SPBG operations halted to facilitate drug probe into former executive chairman

KUALA LUMPUR Feb 18 — ATTA Global Group Bhd has ceased the operations of Syarikat Perkilangan Besi Gaya Sdn Bhd (SPBG) to facilitate the ongoing police investigations following the remand of its ex-executive chairman Ooi Chieng Sim for drug charges.

In a filing with Bursa Malaysia today, the manufacturer and distributor of steel products said while group’s business operation continues, the business conditions of other subsidiaries have become more difficult as some suppliers and customers have adopted a more cautious stand.

"But every effort is being made by the executive directors and management staff to explain (the situation) to them in order to secure business deals," it said, adding that the group is also able to service its loan facilities with net gearing ratio of 1.99 per cent.

ATTA Global has appointed Chiok Kian Chau as the new executive chairman in place of Ooi, whose directorship was suspended by the board on Jan 31.

It has also re-designated Chiok from independent non-executive director to executive director, while major shareholder Tan Kim Hee (21.8 per cent) was appointed executive director from non-independent non-executive director.

After the re-designation, the board comprises eight members — five executive directors and three independent non-executive directors.

The board has appointed an independent expert to conduct a full review of risk management and corporate liability of its subsidiaries, namely SPBG, Progerex Sdn Bhd and SMPC Industries Sdn Bhd

A legal firm would also advice the board on all civil and criminal matters to protect the company and its shareholders.

"Hence, the board foresees a tight schedule in finalising accounts for the financial year ending March 31, 2020. 

"In view of this, the board has resolved and concluded to extend the financial year-end from 12 months to 15 months, i.e. March 31, 2020 to June 31, 2020," it added.

On Jan 16, the company’s premises in the Prai Industrial Estate, which is tenanted by a third party was raided by the police for investigations into an alleged offence under the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952. 

Nine banking accounts of the company and its subsidiaries, namely Duro Metal Industrial (M) Sdn Bhd, SMPC Industries, SPBG and Progerex have been frozen.

The personal banking accounts of Ooi and executive director Ng Chin Nam have also been frozen. — Bernama

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