False announcement to Bursa Malaysia or ‘BoD Assassination’?

Website of Bursa Malaysia

Screenshot of FGV announcement in Bursa Malaysia website on the last change in FGV BoD

As part of their statutory duty, FELDA Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) made an announcement to Bursa Malaysia that recently retired President of the Group and CEO Tan Sri Sabri Ahmad resigned from FGV BoD dated 29 August 2013.

As far as we know, Tan Sri Sabri at the time was incapacitated and hospitalised for a very major ailment in Kuala Lumpur.

He was not allowed visitors and definitely no work ever made its way to his hospital bed. Which include any papers that he is supposed to sign, to finalise if ever he actually wants to leave FGV BoD by his own device.

Sabri was Prime Minister Dato’ Seri Mohd. Najib Tun Razak’s personal pick three and a half years ago to carry his ‘Transformation Plan’ for the FELDA community, via their business arm FELDA Global Ventures and FELDA Holdings Bhd. Sabri was supposed to merge the two under FGVH and listed it.

Sabri started the ball rolling and made the necessary work to merge, restructure and organise the plan for IPO. On 7 October 2011, Prime Minister Najib announced in his Bajet 2012 speech that the exercise would happen and by April 2012, FGVH would be listed as a plc.

He successfully did the first one, Malaysian Sugar Malaysia (MSM). MSM was listed in mid 2011 and cash was realised for FGV, on top increasing value to the shareholders.

Part of the listing exercise of FGV was supposed to realise the full potential and ‘unlocking of values’, designed for the benefits of  the 112,635 FELDA settlers. It did happen when Prime Minister Najib announced the ‘Durian Runtuh’ of RM15,000 in agggregate to all FELDA settler families for the hardwork and sacrifice all these years.

'Bumiputra Agenda' steadfast post FGVH IPO

The market was bullish. The IPO of FGV in June 2012 was second most globally successful IPO for the whole year, after Facebook. FGV realised RM4.5 billion in cash, from the IPO exercise. Sabri carved out a large portion of the gains realised from the IPO, for the purpose of continuous development of FELDA community.

In January, FGV Chairman Tan Sri Isa Samad announced the designated CEO Emir Mavani to replace Sabri. Then the final ouster of Sabri as CEO came on 15 July.

It is no mystery why there are personalities who wanted Sabri out the way from FGV BoD. FGV is sitting on a huge pile of cash and any successor to the wealth planned and created from Sabri’s hard work could easily do spending spree.

Proposals like the acquisition of New Britain Plantations off Papua New Guinea, almost double what Kulim Bhd paid for a similar acquisition two years earlier. Now, the more recent one is the Pontian Plantations which was acquired for RM1.204b and paid in cash.

What is interesting about the Pontian Plantations acquisition is that the speed that the deal was was made and concluded since the year before, one of its own shareholders TSH Resources failed.

They had to push Sabri out of the way very quickly for obvious reasons. Had Sabri is still around, he would have not allowed nor condone the acquisition of Pontian Plantations to be exercised without proper good governance and necessary due diligence.

After all, Sabri is an experienced planter and very well respected in the industry. He could smell a rat or fish, in any proposition.

As far as we know, Sabri did not sign any documents that he agreed to resign from FGV BoD. In fact, Prime Minister Najib also wanted Sabri to remain in the FGV BoD after he retired as Group President and CEO. Sabri would only leave when Prime Minister Najib tells him to. So if Sabri did not sign anything or even verbally agreed to resign from FGV BoD, how could FGV make such an announcement to Bursa Malaysia?

Is this not an attempt to commit corporate fraud by deception?

Published in: on October 4, 2013 at 14:00  Comments (12)  

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12 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Ada kemungkinan Sabri Sudah Sign Borang yang Haribulannya ditinggal kosong. Jadi Isa Bolih isi haribulan yang sesuai untuk dia buat Announcement. Cuma Sabri sahaja bolih bantah kalau dia mahu. Dalam keadaan dia sekarang ini tak mungkin berlaku. Big Dog adalah persona Non Grata dan tak berhak mengambil tindakan apa pun terhadap Isa and Co.

  2. If he had handpicked Sabri and then wanted him to stay on after retirement, why didn’t Najib do anything about it when Isa did the butchering? Or is Isa a stronger contender than Sabri? After all, just like Sharizat was handpicked to be his special advisor, wasn’t Isa also handpicked by Najib too? What the hell is going on? So much high-handed actions done without respect for anybody at all.

    • Same mystery why PM Najib appointed Shahrizat as PM’s adviser on women’s issues with ministerial status.

      Or Hassan Malek as minister in charge of consumer affairs.

      Better still, P Wathyamoorty!

      • Not much mystery on Shahrizat. Najib just believes that Shahrizat wull be Wanita Chief and could get Wanita members to dissuade anyone from contesting him at the UMNO party elections.

        Najib was returned unopposed. Now we just see whether Shahrizat can get elected as Wanita Chief.

  3. This what we called ” freezing room”. Simple and self explanations.

  4. If Sabri Ahmad did not resign but instead removed from board so quickly from his retirement as CEO, then the Chairman must be responsible for it.

    I think the Chairman is obliged to explain why the immediate past CEO was removed barely 45 days from his last day,

    Did he do something detrimental to the company?

    Otherwise, a man with vast experience like that as a planter is a valuable asset elsewhere. Even competitors.

    Unless Isa removed Sabri becoz of something else.

    Never the less, lets pray this blogger is right about Sabri’s ‘resignation’. Otherwise the board is answerable for making a false announcement.

  5. Isa must go. Bertahun jadi mb negeri sembilan tak de apa perubahan dilakukan di n.s. and what do we expect from the same guy to membangunkan felda.

  6. Er BD,

    The RM 4 billion cash pile came about by an asset injection of 300,000 ha of palm oil plantations that was owned by LKTP through a 99 year lease at a price well below the market rate, or in the words of the IPO – a “carveout”. Previously, most of the returns accrued first to LKTP who used it in their programmes.

    Now there is even a question on what basis did the Govt have access to the 300k Ha land. It was acquired as part of the Group Settlement Act 1956 and then 50 plus years later, it was injected into a corporate entity.

    Of course, the question that still needs to be asked is why was FGVH chosen over FHB. FGVH for all intents and purposes was, and still is, an investment holding company. FGVH was, and still owns 0 supporting infrastructure and the supply chain. R&D into seedlings are done by FHB. Mills owned by FHB. Downstream production owned by FHB or by FHB JVs. Road Tankers and vessels owned by FHB. Marketing expertise owned by FHB, so it remains a question why FGVH was given the leasehold rights when it should have been FHB – which is 51% owned by KPF, the natural ownership entity for the settlers.

    FGVH only wholly owned assets are its facilities in North America, which has been making losses. Like why on earth is TRT ETGO making losses when the facility is brand new and they have access to the cheapest power source in North America? Questions and more questions.

    Bottom line is this and this is the reason why most of these businesses fails. Govt never gives assets to the natural owner. They give it to “wheeler dealers” entities which do not have the supply chain or the expertise to make the thing work.

    Value is not created by Excel models and pitch books. Its created by running a lean business and doing things better than you used to do it previously.

    Sabri did make a good deal in the acquisition of Perlis Plantation Berhad and MSM. Flipped it in about a year and made a billion for FGV. (Of course Robert Kuok did not want to sell, but I’m not shedding a tear for him.)

    By the way, the way how things are run, FGV will end up destroying value rather than creating it. The mistake was for the Govt to interfere in an operation that was run reasonably well by FHB. PS: Anybody who invested in FGV on the opening day is currently losing money. This is not value creation. Period.

    PS: Are the good state govts happy with their tombstone stake in FGV? And why on earth is EPF continuing to buy. Questions and more questions – see you at RM 3.50

  7. Bursa Malaysia, Securities Commission and MACC must do a thorough investigation on this.

    Probably other CEOs of GLCs would like to observe how immediate past CEOs are treated, when they leave after completing national service.

    The severity of the penalty of Sect 122B of the Securities Industry Act demonstrate that how serious the govt takes “False disclosure to Commission, stock exchange or recognised clearing house”.

    FGV is a very important GLC. It is PM Najib’s baby.

    For FGV to commit false disclosure to Bursa is shameful for PM Najib’s leadership. Esp three weeks ago he confidently announced the Bumiputera Economic Agenda.

  8. ini semua actions yang very shameful not only to the government but also to the human race no integrity at all.

  9. I agreed SC and MACC to investigate the Felda and business wing FGV. Everybody on the top gelap mata with the IPO gain more than RM 10 billion. At the same time most of the staff are stressed and unhappy with the management. Why PM just keep his mouth shut. MACC’s representative in FGV just zip the mine because of good perks from FGV.

  10. […] has come to our attention that FELDA Global Ventures Holdings Bhd. (FGV) announced on 29 August 2013 to Bursa Malaysia of the resi…from the Board of Directors (BoD). The reason for resignation is stated as “Due to other […]

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