http://www.ceylontoday.lk/print20170401 ... p?id=42345
East-West Properties PLC yesterday announced that the Company had signed a Letter of Intent to sell the Wijesuriya family-held 71.82 per cent stake in the first international Marriott-managed Sri Lankan entity; Weligama Bay Marriott Resort & Spa to HPL Hotels and Resorts Pte Ltd, to a unit of a Singapore main-board listed company, Hotel Properties Limited (HPL).
A subsidiary of East-West Properties PLC, Weligama Hotel Properties Limited owns the Weligama Bay Marriott Resort & Spa.
According to sources, the negotiating amount is between $60-65 million. Due to speculation of the deal, the share prices of this company sky-rocketed during the past few weeks. However, the official announcement was only made yesterday.
Speaking to Ceylon FT, market participants welcomed the deal and said, "This is a significant deal considering the deteriorating political environment of the country."
The Weligama Hotel Properties Limited has over US$ 50m assets and capitalized Rs 2 billion of interest in loans in the year upto March 2017. Furthermore, it has already issued 10 million ordinary shares by way of private placement. About half the costs incurred in the construction of Weligama Bay Marriott Resort & Spa had been borrowed from the Bank Of Ceylon, according to Company officials.
Ceylon FT earlier exclusively reported that veteran businessman, Nahil Wijesuriya-led, family plans to reduce their stake in the said Company, with a separate listing in the Colombo Stock Exchange listing. Wijesuriya had given a majority of his local businesses, while being heavily involved in businesses in Singapore.
During the post-war period, Wijesuriya sold his Inter-Contiental Hotel which is now known as Kingsbury Hotel to Hayleys, with a massive capital gain.
Consequent to this deal, the Managing Director of East-West Properties PLC , Vijitha Wijesuriya resigned on 20 February.
Company officers said Vijitha Wijesuriya was married to a British citizen and has been living in the UK for the past three months, with a new business assignment.
When CSE market regulators were contacted, an official said they might consider ordering East-West Properties PLC to conduct an internal inquiry regarding the recent unusual share price hike.
HPL Hotels & Resorts recently signed an agreement with BOC to refurbish the original Grand Oriental Hotel (GOH) building to manage it under the Four Seasons Hotel Chain. HPL Hotels & Resorts has 12 properties in the Asia-Pacific and the Indian Ocean, which includes a total of 2,886 rooms.