Friday, 17 March 2017

Stock Market Today:USP seeking advice on EGM requisition letter advised to obtain documentary evidence of shareholders stake

USP Group says it is still seeking legal advice on the validity of an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) request made by substantial minority shareholders Joshua Huang Thien En and Teng Choon Fong, from over a month ago.

In a Thursday evening filing to the SGX, USP says it has also been advised to obtain "documentary evidence" of their shareholding in the company from the two parties concerned.

To recap, Huang and Teng, who collectively own more than 11% of the company, last month via a Feb 10 letter called for an EGM to oust USP's chairman Li Hua and executive director Raphael Tham.

The pair has accused USP's board of not acting soundly in relation to the company's investment in loss-making contract manufacturer Huan Hsin Holdings as well as privately held company SG Support Services.

Additionally, they questioned the divestment of two Chinese subsidiaries at less than their book value and queried the independence of one of USP's two independent directors.

USP had previously acknowledged the receipt of the requisition letter in a Feb 13 filing to the SGX, and said it was verifying the shareholdings of the two men, while also seeking legal advice on the validity of the request.

The counter last traded at 18 cents on March 14.

This week in print, we detail how Huang and Teng were preparing to organise the EGM themselves after having received no response from the company. As of late, lawyers for Huang and Teng sent a letter dated March 15 which presented several questions, including on USP's provisional appointment of auditors, as well as the possible relations between a director at USP and Chairman Li.

For more background on Huang and Teng's dissent against USP, pick up the latest copy of The Edge Singapore (Issue 771, week of March 20), available at newsstands today.

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