Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Surviving 2012

Don't fret, the announcement on 12 December 2012 about Singapore Airlines (SIA), 56 per cent owned by Temasek Holding, selling it's 49 per cent stake in Virgin Atlantic for US$360 million (S$436 million), is in line with the state investor's trading practice. 12 years ago on 30 March 2000, it paid 600 million pounds in cash (S$1.06 billion) in the hope of leveraging on the purchase for the lucrative transatlantic market. Buy high sell low. Like the Like the 3.8 percent stake in Bank of America Corp. that was disposed off at a loss of US$4.6 billion in May 2009.

There was a lot of hoopla then, about how the deal with Sir Richard Branson was sealed with a handshake and a number scratched on a napkin (signed off by Cheong Choong Kong, thanks, anon@12/12/2012 10:11 AM). Chew Choon Seng, who paid a huge price for a pittance of the profits, relinquished his position as Chief Executive Officer of SIA at the end of 2010 and assumed the post of Chairman at Singapore Exchange (SGX) and board member of Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC). It is a tragic tale not to be regaled any time soon, at least not in the mainstream media.

Barely 3 months ago in October 2012, SIA announced it will buy a 10 percent stake in Virgin Australia Holdings Ltd for A$105 million (S$109 million) to compete with Qantas Airways Ltd in the lucrative Australian market, an effort also interpreted by some to deal with its troubled budget associate, Tiger Airways Holdings Ltd. Shares in Tiger Airways, 33 percent owned by SIA, were suspended after the carrier reported a S$18 million second-quarter net loss. The troubled airline had just won back a full operating license that particular month after fixing safety faults that had caused Australian regulators to ground the carrier last year. Chew was fingered for not intervening in the operations of Tiger Airways, which led to the carrier's grounding in 2011.

Well, we might still survive the prediction of doom for 21/12/2012 yet, the supposed end of the Mayan calendar. Jose Manrique Esquivel, a descendant of the Maya, said his community in Mexico's Yucatan peninsula sees the date as a celebration of their survival despite centuries of genocide and oppression. Our own worries are surviving wildcat strikes by Chinese nationals, insults by Pinoys working at Seagate, bus fare increases foretold by the transport minister. Don't pop the champagne too soon, doomsday may just have been postponed.

25 comments:

  1. Err... The date is 21/12 not 12/12. You got it wrong Tattler.

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    1. Oopsy, thanks for the correction.

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    2. the Dday may be 21.12 but 12.12 also has its significance. It is entering into the vortex of change and new era.

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  2. It is Cheong Choong Kong, not Chew Choon Seng who stuck the $1.06 billion deal with Richard Branson

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  3. The way they lost the money is more scarier than 21.12.12....eeeekk i'm going to find a rock to hide...

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  4. The Story of a school drop out and the scholars.

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    1. Not a fair fight lah.
      The school dropout wins.

      Scholars only good enough to wash test tubes for the school dropout.

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  5. PAP guiding principles:
    Privatize the profits, socialize the losses.
    Cronies write the checks, taxpayers pick up the tab.
    If it weren't for the 100% regularity of the losses and that you and I are the taxpayers, all these principles would almost be funny!

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  6. what is it that you are trying to say. very hard to understand.

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    1. ARe you Gan Thian Poh?

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    2. Use your brain to think lah.
      A loss of nearly $600 million is reported as a gain by the nation building MSM, ignoring the writedown to a low book value.Why the need to sell the 3 power generation companies for $13 billions? What is the book value? Why is Temasek able to report an annual return of 17% .Where does the money from the government bond sales to CPF goes to? Start to ask yourslf questions and be enlightened.

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    3. It get you to think that Yale university is so low in wanting money in yale-nus as to want to associate with a regime that can publicly masquerade a loss as a gain and using creative accounting to cover loss as reported by Christoper Baldings...

      It is insult to university of the world that such nonsense can happen.

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    4. Thats ok friend, 60.1% are like you too. Next time you read a blog, just enjoy the words. Then when numbers appear, try to concentrate a little more. Its not very hard. Buy at $1.06 billion, sell at $436m. You just lost your share of that $600m thru your CPF fund now lent to temasek, who owns SIA. If you still have problem, feel free to join me at My First Skool :)

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  7. PAP can afford to make mistakes...cos the rest of us pay for their mistakes...

    so much for PAP scholars...only can survive in PAP singapore...and living off the blood, sweat & tears of others toil...

    Well...like the dinosaur LKY states...scholars are the best...he is right..only in PAP singapore...anywhere else...PAP scholars are a joke...and a dime a dozen...maybe 1 in 100 PAP scholars are original thinkers...the rest just conform and slowly de-evolve backwards into a parasitical lifeform instead of a symbiote...

    Nuts lahhhh...

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    1. If it is as many as 1 in 100, why did they choose an idiot to be their party's General Secretary?

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  8. Bloody hell, purchase price in year 2000 is 600m pounds, sell price today is USD 360m and the fawning mass media can proclaim it's a profit for SIA because of good-will writedown of 90%? Losses, like strikes, are never in the vocabulary of the msm and glcs.

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  9. Well..so 12.12.12 will go down in history for PAP first MP to admit its affair publicly...how come nobody caught it until their own admission huh...looks like SG these days are very into catching affairs/blowjobs/sexexchange etc...about time we up the ante...go for the serious meat crime like those committed by Temasek and our GLCs...or we have to wait till 2016...also can lah..

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    1. Christmas came early this year?

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    2. Goes to show, PA is literally and figuratively in bed with PAP.
      Rest our case.
      Call for by-election and SDP Chee should go for a run!

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    3. "Mr Khaw Boon Wan said the Workers' Party (WP) should come clean with the people on expelled WP member Yaw Shin Leong's alleged extramarital affair."

      How now, boonwan khaw (puns intended). The shoe's on the other foot now. Wonder if there'll be a by-election in Punggol East, or another Madam Vellama to take the PM to court. No doomsday yet, but 2012 is sure ending with a bang - for the PAP.

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    4. 12.12.12 turned out to be 21.12.12 for Michael Palmer.

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  10. They need to sell off the stake in order to show a profit on the books for SIA this quarter ? They must be really desperate to cut loss.

    Didn't someone once gave us the excuse that they go for long term investment ?

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    1. They have a perfect answer for you - Long term doesnt mean they dont buy and sell.A slap on the face of the old wise one by Temasek.

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  11. I think it is not just going to bed...probably some rewarding of budgets to some companies need to be investigated. People who joined PA all has some sort of lobangs from PAP.

    They have 60% of the vote, 93% of the seats, the mandate, they can say what they want, do what they want, they can even lose all the monies in the reserves and blame it on the weather - thanks to the serfs that voted the pigs.

    Having a few alternative parties is the only way for any regime bearing in mind that no regime is perfect.

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  12. The original purchase price at £600 millions is actually s$1.5 billions based on a conservative forex £/S$ at 2.5 So actual loss is more than S$1 billions if u include forex losses That is why all the sex scandals are unveiling to dustract attention

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