Nexgram unit to partner Protasco for RM400mil Cyberjaya project [The Star 23 May 14]

PETALING JAYA: Nexgram Holdings Bhd is set to make its foray into property development by partnering Protasco Bhd for an estimated RM400mil proposed mixed development project in Cyberjaya.

A source familiar with the proposed development said that the project, sited on 2.4ha, would comprise residential, office and retail units as well as a data centre, subject to the approval of the relevant authorities.

An announcement on the joint venture between the companies’ subsidiaries – Nextnation Datacity Sdn Bhd and Protasco Development Sdn Bhd – is expected earliest by today.

Nexgram, formerly known as Nextnation Communication Bhd, is essentially a mobile applications and platform provider.

In March 2012 the company said it had purchased the piece of land in Cyberjaya for RM18.52mil cash and that it was to cater for the development of office space and facilities such as a data centre as well as research and development labs.

Protasco, meanwhile, is a mid-sized construction and property outfit that is currently in the initial stage of its Bangi De Centrum City project, which has a gross development value of up to RM10bil and spans some 40.5ha.

Notably, both companies have a common shareholder in Tey Por Yee, the founder of Nexgram.

Tey emerged in Protasco in late 2012 and is currently its second largest shareholder with a 17.69% stake.

The proposed mixed development follows the intention of Nexgram to divest its core business activities, as had been previously announced, while also enabling it to expand its current IT business via the proposed data centre and research labs, a source said.

For Protasco, the proposed development will enable it to extend its current property portfolio.

Protasco is also involved in the construction industry, where its order-book now stands at around RM700mil.

It is reported that the company, which is largely involved in road construction, expects the figure to cross the RM1bil mark by the end of the year.

Meanwhile, if all goes as planned, the Nexgram-Protasco venture is expected to be completed in not more than five years from the date of commencement, which has yet to be determined.

Besides the necessary approvals, both companies would also need to seek independent advice for their minorities with regard to the proposed project, the source said.

Nexgram and Protasco shares finished flat yesterday, closing at 12 sen and RM1.95, respectively.