Hyflux files suit against now jilted investor SM Investment

Singapore five-dollar note Photo by Leslie Shaffer

Hyflux said on Monday that it filed a writ of summons in Singapore’s High Court against SM Investments, claiming its now jilted white-knight investor repudiated the restructuring deal.

In October, SM Investments, which is a consortium of the Salim Group and the Medco Group, entered a binding agreement to invest S$530 million for a 60 percent stake in Hyflux, which had filed for court protection in May. The Singapore water company had said the oversupply of gas in Singapore’s market had resulted in depressed electricity prices, which hit earnings in 2017 and drove losses in the first quarter of 2018.

Earlier this month, Hyflux terminated the deal with SMI, saying it had sought a “final, clear and unequivocal written confirmation” that the consortium would proceed with the deal, and that it “regrettably” declined to do so.

On Monday, Hyflux said SMI was denying it had repudiated the restructuring agreement. That followed a series of testy exchanges made via local media, with SMI alleging Hyflux withheld information, while Hyflux stated dates it believed the information was delivered.

Hyflux’s court action is aimed at claiming the S$38.9 million deposit that was placed into escrow shortly after the restructuring agreement began, the Singapore company said in a filing to SGX on Monday.


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