KUALA LUMPUR, July 17 (Bernama) -- Specialised automation machine manufacturer, i-Stone Group Bhd made a strong debut on the Bursa Malaysia's ACE Market today, backed by an increase in demand for automation and Industrial 4.0 adaptation.
The company opened at 25 sen, a nine sen premium over its issue price of 16 sen per share, with 732,439 units traded. The company has a market capitalisation of RM195.4 million.
Its managing director Rebecca Tee Sook Sing said the company viewed the ongoing US-China trade war positively as they expect more companies to shift their production base to Malaysia to avoid the lingering effect of the trade crisis.
"There will be a higher demand for our products and we are optimistic of our prospects," she told the media after the listing ceremony today.
Gross proceeds from the initial public offering totalling RM39.1 million will be utilized for product development, repayment of bank borrowings, construction of a new design and development centre of its new operations centre in Taman Technology Johor and purchase of new robotic arms.
"We have earmarked RM6.8 million for the construction of our new design and development centre. Our manufacturing capabilities would also be boosted by the acquisition of new machineries," she said.
Among i-Stone’s major customers are Dyson Group of Companies which contributed 65.5 per cent of its total sales, V.S Group of Companies (2.3 per cent) and ATA Industrial (M) Sdn Bhd (three per cent).
For the financial year 2018, 83.6 per cent of its revenue was derived from manufacturing automation while the remainder was for complementary products and services.
Seventy-eight per cent of their total revenue came from the local market while the rest from export market.
"In the next one to two years, we would focus on our local market to create better products for our customers," she said.
As for their workforce, Rebecca said i-Stone has an ongoing collaboration with Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) for talent tapping.
"Our collaboration with UTM is to ensure that the graduates are trained according to the latest market demand. We have also secured engineering graduates to work with us before they leave the university," she said.