KUALA LUMPUR: QES Group Bhd made a pleasant debut on Bursa Malaysia's ACE market, opening at a 5.5 sen or 28.95% premium against its issue price of 19 sen. At the noon break, it rose 3 sen or 15.8% to 22 sen on some 115.54 million shares done, being the most actively traded stock. QES managing director and president Chew Ne Weng said in a statement that the group is optimistic on the outlook of the semiconductor industry as more multinational companies are increasing their investments in automated handling equipment, which the company is looking to ride on, particularly for its manufacturing division's automatic vision inspection and automated handling equipment. "We believe the semiconductor industry is still riding on the upcycle. Hence, we do not foresee any let down in global semiconductor sales in the immediate term," he added. QES is principally involved in the distribution of inspection, test and measurement equipment, materials and engineering solutions. It also manufactures optical inspection equipment and automated handling equipment. It is also looking to expand its recurring income segment by diversifying its market segments and products into the higher education, petrochemical and pharmaceutical areas. The group has raised RM28.82 million from its public issue of 151.66 million new shares. It will be deploying 37% or RM10.72 million of its proceeds as capital expenditure to purchase demonstration equipment for its distribution division, increase its production capacity and upgrade its information technology equipment for operational use. It will also be utilising 24% or RM7 million to repay bank borrowings, RM4.85 million (17%) for development of its three key products under its manufacturing division and 11% or RM3.25 million for general working capital requirements. The remaining RM3 million will be used to defray its listing expenses.