20160608 Non transparent MP’s company should delist from SGX

Hai Leck Holdings Limited, a public-listed company, reads like a PAP-affiliated company; it has 2 ‘BBM’ directors and 2 ‘PBM’ directors. This is because the recipients of National Day awards are 99.99% PAP grassroots members.

Source: 2014 Annual Report

On 13 October last year, SGX queried Hai Leck on its non transparency, ie non disclosure on the remuneration of the 3 children of Hai Leck’s Executive Chairman and founder Mr Cheng Buck Poh.

SGX: “As required by Rule 1207(12) of the Listing Manual, please make disclosures as recommended in paragraph 9.4 of the Code or otherwise explain the reason(s) for the deviation from the following Code recommendations.”

The following day, Hai Leck responded by telling SGX off: “The Board believes that it is for the benefit of the Company and the Group that the remuneration of the employees who are immediate family members of a director or the CEO to be kept confidential, due to its sensitive nature and the Company’s concern over poaching of the employees by competitors.” Wa lau eh, like dat every company no need to disclose anything leow.

So Hai Leck can own self decide the rule is not applicable to own self and all SGX did was remain silent?

To simplify Hai Leck’s utterly stupid statement – the disclosure of the remuneration of Cheng Buck Poh’s children would enable other companies to offer them a better deal and they are likely to leave. Coincidentally, MP Cheng Li Hui is one of the children.

How many Singaporeans believe the founder’s children will leave and work for another company, keechiu! Hmm.. no show of hands.

Back in 2012, Hai Leck disclosed the remuneration of ALL its directors (and key management) including Buck Poh’s children.

Question for SGX:

Since there was obviously a rule on remuneration disclosure in incremental bands of S$50,000, why was this rule not applicable to Hai Leck?

Will SGX be willing to raise this issue now that one of Hai Leck’s directors is a PAP MP?

The ball is in SGX’s court and it should not pay lip service to the Code of Corporate Governance (para 9.4) on the proper disclosure on remuneration.

As a public listed company, Hai Leck shouldn’t insist on keeping information confidential, within the family. Since the Cheng family effectively controls 83% of Hai Leck (pg 111), it really defeats the purpose of listing on the exchange. Time to delist?

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2 Responses to 20160608 Non transparent MP’s company should delist from SGX

  1. Xmen says:

    Such exemption would not be allowed by the SEC in the U.S.. So much for corporate governance in a one-party country.

  2. sinkie says:

    That’s why I buy only US stocks, particularly those in the Dividends Aristocrats & Dividends Achievers indices. They have proven over the past few decades to be very pro-shareholder. Some of them have been increasing their dividends every year for the past 50-60 years liao. Even during all the past major recessions and stock crashes such as during WW2 and in 2008/2009. Unfortunately these companies have become very expensive over the past 3 years.

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