Savico (SVC) appoints new management board amid foreign divestment

Saigon General Services Joint Stock Company (Savico) has appointed a new board of directors for the next five years with seven Vietnamese members, while the only foreign member was removed from the new board.

 

The move won 99.53 per cent of shareholders’ votes in its annual shareholders’ meeting on Friday in HCM City.

Savico’s management team is in a transition period for the 2020-25 term and any changes to the management board have received a great deal of attention, especially after its major foreign shareholders sold more than 44 per cent of their stakes before the shareholders’ meeting.

Mai Viet Ha, chairman of Savico Da Nang, was appointed the new chairman, replacing Nguyen Binh Minh who resigned last October. Phan Duong Cuu Long will be the general director and the company’s legal representative.

The management board has three new faces – two members from the parent company Ben Thanh Trading & Service Joint Stock Company and one from DNP Corporation (under Dong Nai Plastics Co).

With the entire divestment, the representative of the Endurance fund, board member Lars Johan Gerard De Geer, was removed from the new board.

In April, Savico’s foreign shareholders sold almost their entire stakes, reducing their holdings in Savico from 47.4 per cent to more than 3 per cent.

In a recent report, Pyn Elite Fund said “an ownership tussle in the company opened a window of opportunity for our sell-out”. With about 3.6 million euro (US$4 million) in cash from the deal, the fund said it booked a slight loss from the deal.

Savico is Viet Nam’s biggest car dealership chain, selling many different brands such as Toyota, Ford and Huyndai. The number of vehicles sold by its dealer network in 2019 hit 40,500, up 28 per cent year-on-year, equivalent to more than 10 per cent of all cars sold by Viet Nam Automobile Manufacturers Association (VAMA) and Huyndai Thanh Cong.

Responding to concerns over the foreign divestment, chairman Mai Viet Ha on Friday said Savico is a listed company so share selling/purchasing or changes in shareholders was normal based on market demand.

According to Ha, all major foreign shareholders divested due to their own needs and strategies and were replaced by a group of domestic investors.

At the meeting, the firm also amended its charter to mean large shareholders will not be able to make use of their advantages to affect the rights and interests of the company and other shareholders while at the same time, they must disclose information as prescribed by law.

In addition, it also made changes in regulations related to providing personal information of board members and responsibilities of the Board of Directors and the Supervisory Board when not convening general meetings of shareholders.

Due to unstable developments in the global market, Savico lowered its revenue target for 2020 by 19 per cent to nearly VND14.8 trillion ($635.2 million) and halved the net profit goal to VND108 billion ($4.6 million).

The dividend payout will also be slashed to 7 per cent.

This year, the company also plans to issue more than 8 million shares to raise charter capital at the ratio of 1:3.

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