KUALA LUMPUR – Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) is understood to be in talks with two companies — one linked to businessman Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Albukhary and the other China-based China National Cereals, Oils and Foodstuffs Corporation (Cofco) — to take a strategic stake in the ailing plantation company.

The Edge Malaysia business and investment weekly (Edge Weekly) for the week of March 20 — 26, 2017 reported two separate sources The Edge spoke to, had confirmed there have been talks with these two companies.

“I am sure a proposal by Syed Mokhtar is on the table,” the Edge Weekly quoted one source as saying.

Meanwhile, FGV CEO and president Datuk Zakaria Arshad was reported to have created quite a stir on the sidelines of the Palm and Lauric Oils Price Outlook Conference & Exhibition, when he brushed aside talk of Syed Mokhtar and the Tradewinds group being potential strategic long term shareholders in FGV.

“No, not with that group,” Zakaria responded when asked.

Zakaria said the new strategic shareholder would be one that would complement FGV.

“What we want now are investors that are also in the business, so they too will be looking for long-term growth. We want to grow together with them.”

Zakaria, however, declined to comment on the identities of the candidates when contacted by The Edge.