Good Fellow branches out in $560m forest stake deal

Andy Chen

Hong Kong-listed Good Fellow Group expects its newly acquired ecological forestry business to contribute 80 per cent of the company's net profit and half of its revenue in two years.

Shareholders yesterday approved the $560 million acquisition of Strong Lead Investment, 60 per cent owned by Leading Power International and 40 per cent by Total Victory Investments.

The deal involved a cash payment of $50 million and the issue of 580 million new shares in Good Fellow valued at $69.6 million, $210.4 million in convertible notes (with a conversion price of 12 cents) and $230 million in non-interest-bearing promissory loan notes.

Strong Lead Investment's sole asset is a 70 per cent stake in Beijing Wan Fu Chun Forest Resources Development, which is involved in tree planting and management and forest products.

A condition of the acquisition is that net profit for the Beijing company will be at least $200 million over two years.

If all the convertible notes are exercised, chairman Ng Leung-ho's 34.8 per cent stake in Good Fellow would be diluted to 19.4 per cent, leaving him still the single biggest shareholder.

Good Fellow posted a net profit of $2.4 million last year on a turnover of $72.4 million.