Malaysian bunker supplier Straits Inter Logistics is moving into the marine fuel market in Hong Kong by acquiring a 38% stake in Banle Energy International. The publicly listed Straits Inter Logistics explained that the MYR15 million (USD3.6 million) acquisition would enable it to grow profits, based on Banle’s financial statements.
Formerly known as Raya International Bhd, Straits Inter Logistics was involved in water filtration until it was rebranded in 2017, after switching its focus to marine fuel trading.
The company commenced marine fuel trading through a subsidiary, Selatan Bunker (M) Sdn Bhd, which has a collaboration agreement with Malaysian physical bunker supplier Tumpuan Megah Development Sdn Bhd.
Selatan Bunker operates in Pasir Gudang and Tanjung Pelepas ports, using two bunker tankers.
Hong Kong is among the world’s five largest bunkering ports by sales volume, behind Singapore, Fujairah, and Rotterdam. This could explain Straits Inter Logistics’ investment.
Justifying its investment, Straits Inter Logistics said in a Bursa Malaysia filing that Banle recorded revenue of USD84,842,939 in the 12 months ended 31 July 2017, representing an increase of approximately 138%.
Banle’s net profit also grew by 51% over the same period to USD365,238.
One of Banle’s directors, Chia Teck Lim, was a director with Hong Kong-listed bunkering group Brightoil Petroleum, before founding the company with Liu Xiaoling in 2015.