It will draw on $124 million from banking division spin-off Dah Sing Financial Holdings plans to use $124 million of the proceeds from a spin-off of its banking businesses to pay its existing shareholders a special dividend of 80 cents per share. It will also set aside 15 per cent of the upcoming global offering for its current shareholders who will be able to apply for one share in the new company for every five shares they hold in Dah Sing Financial, according to a company statement. The company yesterday said 27.3 million shares would be available for this purpose, indicating that the company intended to issue a total of 182 million shares before the planned listing of Dah Sing Banking Group (DSBG) on the Hong Kong stock exchange. The spin-off plan took the market by surprise when it was first announced in March, particularly since the banking operations already account for about 90 per cent of total operations. According to the statement the banking operations, including Dah Sing Bank and Mevas Bank, contributed $880 million to the group's net profit of $993 million last year. The share price fell 12.12 per cent immediately after the March announcement and has lost a further 12 per cent since then. The prospect of a special dividend sparked some early buying, taking the stock 2.8 per cent higher at one point, but at the end of the day it was down 1.44 per cent at $51. The share offer will comprise new and existing shares, and is estimated to bring in between $2.22 billion and $3.1 billion in net proceeds, according to the statement. Dah Sing Financial has obtained a waiver from the stock exchange allowing it to offer only 20 per cent of DSBG's enlarged issued share capital to investors, compared with the otherwise mandatory 25 per cent. However, it vows to increase the public float to 25 per cent within 18 months of the listing. The size of the original offer may also be raised by 15 per cent if an over-allotment option is exercised. No timetable for the listing was revealed, but shareholders will need to give their approval for the transaction at an extraordinary general meeting on June 12, which suggests the original target to complete the spin-off by the end of next month may still be met. HSBC will sponsor the listing and act as global co-ordinator. It will be joint bookrunner with CLSA.