Costs eat into tasty Tack Hsin profits

TACK Hsin Holdings, the hotpot restaurant chain, gave its shareholders a tasty profit of 64.1 per cent on its first day of trade.

But the figure will have been cut substantially for those who borrowed cash to make a short-term gain.

The shares opened at $2.10 but slid all day, ending at $1.51, and the one-for-five bonus warrants closed at 82 cents, giving a package price of $1.674 per share. This compares to an issue price of $1.02 a share.

Chun Wo Holdings, a construction company, also gave its shareholders a first-day profit, at a much more modest level of 13.8 per cent.

For Tack Hsin, the record oversubscription level of 552.2 times will have slashed the profit for those intent on selling the shares on the first day, known as stags.

One stag said that their interest costs and arrangement fees had worked out at 50 cents a share because of the massive oversubscription.

Tack Hsin's shares were the day's heaviest traded, after discounting the placement by UDL, with turnover of $124.6 million, against the $76.5 million issue.

Chun Wo, which was 8.6 times oversubscribed, had trades as high as $1.19 but closed at $1.05, with the one-for-five bonus warrants closing at 44 cents.

This gives a package price of $1.138, against an issue price of $1 a share.

Volume was moderate by the standards of recent new issues, at $25.7 million, against the issue size of $77 million.

Mr Ivan Au Yee-ming, Tack Hsin's executive vice-chairman, said he was happy with the first day's trade and added: ''In the future I hope trading will steady up.'' Despite the heavy stagging of the issue, he said he was confident that a long-term shareholding base was being built.