Saturday, October 3, 2015

Yoma Strategic Holdings back on the watchlist

I am placing Yoma Strategic Holdings back on my watchlist for possible addition to my portfolio. To refresh memories Yoma is the Serge Pun controlled Singapore based vehicle that is investing in Myanmar. We made money in Yoma a couple of years ago when the US lifted economic sanctions on Myanmar as the military junta there began to loosen its grip on power. Since then the government has continued to liberalize the economy and this has resulted in economic growth in the 7% plus range. The price of the stock has come down quite a bit in the last year as emerging and frontier markets have been hit by the strong US dollar. Nevertheless, the economy in Myanmar continues to grow and the country has tremendous economic potential.

I am intrigued by Yoma's strategy. They are primarily engaged in real estate devlopment but I have noticed that they are expanding into all types of businesses. They are doing this by joint venturing with foreign partners which helps diversify risk. They are basically the Jardine Matheson of Myanmar. An example is the first KFC in Myanmar which has Yoma partnering with Yum Brands. Putting aside the nutritional debates people in developing markets like this stuff.

Here is Yoma's most recent presentation which gives more info on the company. I am still taking a look at Yoma and have it on my watch list.

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