In the first ten months of 2023, Khazanah Nasional Bhd, the sovereign wealth fund, has amassed over RM5.44 billion from dividends and stake sales in 10 public-listed companies (PLCs) where it holds a 20% stake or more. A rough estimate based on the companies’ filings indicates that Khazanah received RM3 billion in dividends from these PLCs this year.
Among the major contributors, CIMB Group Holdings Bhd, Tenaga Nasional Bhd, TIME dotCom Bhd, IHH Healthcare Bhd, and Axiata Group Bhd stand out. Notably, CIMB, with a 23.01% stake held by Khazanah, led the pack with a substantial payout of RM763.12 million.
Khazanah’s stakes in Tenaga and TIME dotCom led to receipts of RM620.67 million and RM620.78 million respectively, owing to its 22.56% ownership in Tenaga and 35.73% in TIME dotCom.
A noteworthy portion of TIME dotCom’s generous dividend was attributed to the partial stake sales in its data center business, which fetched RM2 billion in cash earlier this year. This move resulted in Khazanah holding a reduced 25.1% stake, down from 28.8%.
Khazanah’s recent divestments in these companies, along with potential rumors of a stake sale in IHH Healthcare, have garnered attention. However, Khazanah refuted these rumors. Currently, it owns a 25.94% stake in IHH Healthcare.
Since March, Khazanah has sold approximately 159.81 million shares in Tenaga, equivalent to a 2.76% stake, for around RM1.49 billion. Similarly, in CIMB, Khazanah has disposed of 112 million shares, valued at RM599.59 million.
Additionally, Khazanah has sold 67.5 million shares (3.65% stake) in TIME dotCom for RM357.08 million. These strategic moves have been well-timed, considering TIME dotCom’s share price reached an all-time high of RM5.56 earlier this month.
Beyond these key holdings, Khazanah’s portfolio includes substantial stakes in companies like UEM Sunrise Bhd, UEM Edgenta Bhd, Axiata Group Bhd, Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd, Astro Malaysia Holdings Bhd, and Telekom Malaysia Bhd.
Looking at Khazanah’s latest financial statement from end-2022, their cash and cash equivalent totaled RM12.33 billion, a 2.86% increase from the previous year. The fund has made substantial dividend payouts to the federal government in 2023, with further obligations set for 2024. These payouts represent a doubling of the 2022 dividend amount.
It’s worth noting that Astro, in response to market conditions, has announced a shift in its dividend policy, introducing an annual calculation based on consolidated profit after tax, amortization, and minority interest (Patami), potentially introducing some uncertainty regarding future dividend payouts.