MR DESMOND Woon Choon Leng, executive director at Ho Bee Investment, has been snapping up shares in the property developer this week.


On Tuesday, he bought 150,000 shares on the open market at 95.8 cents apiece.


Then on Wednesday, he bought another 250,000 shares on the open market at 93.7 cents apiece.


Ho Bee’s share price fell nine cents, or more than 9 per cent, during five straight days of losses that ended on Wednesday. The counter rose one cent to close at 93 cents yesterday.


These two transactions raised Mr Woon’s direct stake to 1.55 million shares, or 0.21 per cent, of the firm’s issued share capital.


In March, Ho Bee chairman and chief executive Chua Thian Poh bought 300,000 shares at 89.5 cents apiece through Ho Bee Holdings, further raising his deemed stake to 476.4 million shares, or 64.61 per cent, of issued share capital.


Ho Bee’s first-quarter results, announced earlier this month, were hurt by a drop in home sales. It reported a 62 per cent plunge in its net earnings to $26.1 million for the quarter ended March 31.


Revenue also fell 62 per cent to $94.2 million, mainly due to the lower recognition of revenue from its property development project, The Coast, at Sentosa Cove.


While it warned that the property market is expected to remain soft in the near term, it expects earnings to be supported by recognition of income from the sale of its residential projects, which include Vertis at Amber Gardens and Quinterra in Holland Road, in the next few years.


Source: Straits Times

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