Blast from the past with Natsteel Electronics

Over breakfast yesterday, Chay Yee Meng reminded me that we last met up for coffee before I got married. That’s almost 15 years ago. We first met when he was the CFO of Natsteel Electronics, the largest contract manufacturer in Singapore and the sixth largest in the world. Apple was its top client, accounting for…

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Azure Capital Fund Management Singapore Private Debt Fund Singapore Hedge Funds Lyte Fund Terence Wong Blue Suit

Terence Wong, CFA

CEO and Executive Director
Azure Capital

Mar 13, 2022

Over breakfast yesterday, Chay Yee Meng reminded me that we last met up for coffee before I got married. That’s almost 15 years ago.

We first met when he was the CFO of Natsteel Electronics, the largest contract manufacturer in Singapore and the sixth largest in the world. Apple was its top client, accounting for over half its business. Shortly after I covered the stock as an analyst, it was acquired by US-based Solectron in October 2000 for S$7.95 per share, valuing the company at S$3.5 billion. It was a huge premium over its share price of ~S$3 per share.

NatElec was not alone. It’s competitors JIT and Omni Industries were acquired by Flextronics and Celestica respectively. However, their deals were nowhere as sweet as NatElec’s. Venture Manufacturing (now know as Venture Corp) was the only one of the Big 4 which resisted a sale and stayed independent till today.