Media Prima's subsidiary the New Straits Times Press Malaysia (NSTP) and Hong Leong Industries (HLI) are selling their entire stakes in Malaysian Newsprint Industries (MNI), which is primarily engaged in the manufacture and sale of newsprint, to Asia Honour Hong Kong.
NSTP is selling its 21.36% stake in MNI for RM14.15 million, while HLI which owns 33.65% of the company is selling its stake for RM22.3 million. According to the bursa filings, the sale will allow Media Prima and HLI Group to recoup part of their investments in MNI.
Last August, news of MNI winding up broke, with Media Prima and HLI announcing that MNI could not continue its business as it had been operating under “very difficult market conditions, especially declining newsprint demand, and has incurred losses for the past three years".
Incorporated in Malaysia on 4 August 1976, MNI has two other shareholders, namely the Rimbunan Hijau Group, one of Malaysia’s largest multi-industry companies which owns an 11.34% stake and Norske Skog, one of the world’s largest producer of publication paper owning 33.65% stake. Rimbunan Hijau Group is controlled by Sarawak billionaire Tan Sri Tiong Hiew King.
MNI which operates a newsprint mill in Pahang’s Mentakab, is also the largest supplier for Media Chinese International, which published the Chinese newspapers such as Sin Chew Daily and Nanyang Siang Pau.