Malaysian Bulk Carrier, Berhad (MAYBULK) has entered into a conditional agreement with leading retail group Tunas Manja Sdn Bhd (TMSB) to explore opportunities in the grocery retail business. It is part of an effort to diversify Malaysian Bulk carriers’ revenue stream to mitigate the risks associated with the international shipping business. MAYBULK currently owns two Kamsarmax dry bulk carriers and also operates a Supramax and Handysize bulker on charter. The company is also involved in ship management and used to be in tanker operations before selling many of its aging assets in recent years.
TMSB is principally involved in the management of supermarket chain stores, including general trading of daily necessities and food products to consumers. It operates a chain of 85 supermarkets and grocery stores under the ‘TMG’ brand throughout Malaysia, with the majority of the stores located on the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia. Through the conditional agreement, MAYBULK will appoint TMSB as a service provider for the supply and provision of products, as well as using the company’s expertise and vast network to set up the stores. MAYBULK will license the grocery store brand names and have the right to open stores in Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya as well as other parts of Malaysia.
MAYBULK reportedly plans to invest MYR 54.38 million (USD 12 million) to open 15 TMG Mart-branded supermarkets and 15 TMG Express-branded convenience stores in the next 12 months in Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya, Selangor, Melaka, and Negeri Sembilan. The company foresees that the grocery business will contribute 25% or more of the company’s net profits in the future. MAYBULK must obtain shareholder approval to proceed according to plan and is expected to get the support at an EGM that will be convened.
(Sources: The Sun Daily; The Maritime Executive)