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Hong Kong’s Citybus, New World First Bus sold for HK$3.2 billion to consortium led by private equity fund

Saturday, August 22, 2020

(SCMP by Katheleen Magramo) - Infrastructure firm NWS Holdings has agreed to sell one of Hong Kong’s largest franchised bus operations – Citybus and New World First Bus – for HK$3.2 billion (US$410.2 million), saying the objective of the deal is to save jobs in a coronavirus-hit business environment.

NWS, a unit of Hong Kong property developer New World Development, sold the firms to a consortium led by private equity fund Templewater Bravo in a cash deal, according to a filing with the Hong Kong stock exchange after trading hours on Friday.

Templewater Bravo will own more than 90 per cent of Citybus and New World First Bus after the acquisition.

Last year, the bus companies suffered a 95 per cent plunge in profit after tax, to HK$8.9 million, even before the Covid-19 pandemic dragged down ridership. In 2018, its profit was HK$162.8 million (US$21 million).


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