Two local technology companies and one based in Singapore plan spin-offs on stock exchanges in Hong Kong and Singapore in the next few months. The local listing candidates are aiming to raise more than HK$156 million. Singapore-based computer company IPC Corp plans to spin off its software business, Thinsoft (Holdings), on the Growth Enterprise Market (GEM) as a springboard to the mainland market. Under the listing plan, which is sponsored by ICEA Capital, Thinsoft would offer 125 million shares - 25 per cent of its share capital - at 40 HK cents each, to raise about HK$50 million, market sources said. The company, formed in 1998, is engaged in computer hardware and software business but has recently shifted its focus solely on software development. During the first nine months of last year, the company had turnover of HK$20 million. In that period, it recorded a net profit of nearly HK$2 million. Thinsoft president Bernard Ngiam said proceeds from the listing would be used partly for marketing the company's two recently launched software products, which aim to lower computer maintenance costs. 'The costs of maintaining a PC are pretty high, it can be regarded as 'fat' for clients, and our solutions aim to trim that fat,' Mr Ngiam said. A Hong Kong listing would give the Singapore-based company the advantage of being close to the mainland, a key target market. Online merchandise trading platform operator Tradeeasy Holdings has also been approved for listing. It is aiming to debut on the second board next month. The company is more than 30 per cent held by telecommunications equipment-maker CCT Telecom, which is listed on the main board. Tradeeasy was set up in 1993 as a provider to overseas buyers of merchandise and factory information on Hong Kong and mainland manufacturers. It set up an online platform in 1997, providing similar services as well as Web-site and online catalogue-design services. The company recently introduced software to help customers manage their sales and marketing operations. Chief executive Danny Yip Kwok-cheung said the company had been profitable in the four months to July 31 last year, for the first time in its history. Turnover rose to about HK$20 million in the year to March 31 last year from HK$8 million in 2000. In the four months to July 31 last year, turnover was about HK$20 million. Mr Yip said the main reason for the sharp turnover growth was the inclusion of its mainland customers previously served by agents. These customers are now served by newly created subsidiaries whose revenues are consolidated into Tradeeasy's accounts. Analysts said Tradeeasy faced stiff competition as the industry had low barriers to entry. Competitors include Nasdaq-listed Global Sources and GEM-listed E-silkrod Holdings. Meanwhile, Renren Holdings' hopes to raise up to S$25 million (about HK$106.25 million) through a listing for its newly acquired short message service (SMS) games operator Imoeba on the Singapore stock exchange in May. Imoeba is one of three Renren companies planning to seek flotations this year. Renren chairman Mak Chi-yeung said the group preferred to list Imoeba in Singapore because of the popularity of SMS in the ciy-state. 'SMS is commonly used by Singaporeans because it is cheaper than using IDD services,' he said. However, SMS was still in an infancy stage of development in Hong Kong, he said. The group would meet investment bankers in Singapore next week. Renren's other two listing candidates would target either Hong Kong's main board or the Growth Enterprise Market after the completion of their acquisition expected this month, he said. He said the acquisitions would be satisfied with share placements instead of cash.