KUB plans to relinquish 40 per cent stake in A&W


PETALING JAYA: KUB Malaysia Bhd (KUB) plans to relinquish a 40 per cent stake in A&W Malaysia to a suitable single investor, while holding on the majority 60 per cent.

Group managing director Datuk Wan Mohd Nor Wan Ahmad said the plan is a strategic move taken to ensure A&W’s fast food operation continues to recover and develops quickly.

“We still want an equity injection of our own to expand quickly. But it will be late. For example, on our own, we may only be able to open two to three outlets a year. But with an equity partner, we can open 10. That is the difference,” he told reporters at a Hari Raya open house with orphans here.

Wan Mohd Nor said however, the plan also depends on the needs of A&W’s model and at present negotiations were ongoing with just one party for the equity injection.

“But we are still looking for any company that has the suitable criteria such as expertise in the fast food business,” he added.

Apart from this, Wan Mohd Nor said KUB will have discussions in January with A&W in the United States on the issue of making A&W Malaysia a franchise business in a move to further strengthen its operations. He drew attention to the fact that as of July this year, the A&W fast food business had posted a profit of about RM1 million.

“The profit is the result of having taken steps to consolidate the A&W management operations and enhance the skills of workers, alongside closing down non-performing outlets in Malaysia,” he said.

He said KUB plans to open between three to four outlets next year at strategic locations. He added the focus will also be on stand alone outlets such as the drive-in at Petaling Jaya.

Meanwhile, Wan Mohd Nor announced the appointment of Samad Mohd Shariff as the new Chief Executive Officer to head the A&W operations.

He said Samad had vast experience in the fast food industry and the means to bring about positive developments in the A&W business. In another development, Wan Mohd Nor said KUB had completed about 95 per cent of the KLIA2 runway works and tests on the landing of aircraft on it will be held on Aug 30.

KUB Builders, a unit of KUB Malaysia, was awarded a RM268.8 million contract in October 2011 to build the 3.96 km third runway, parallel to connecting taxiways and other associated works at the new low-cost carrier terminal. — Bernama