A brief update, Global Sources held a press conference yesterday in Hong Kong in which it issued an open letter to Sage International's (formerly Info Communication) shareholders. It is a 4-page letter, but in short, Global Sources aims to drive a few key points home to Sage's shareholders:
- Global Sources is willing to buy Sage's exhibition business for HK$6 million - double the amount Sage's board agreed to sell to Eddie Leung who is a connected party (i.e. he founded those exhibitions).
- Eddie Leung sold his stake in Info Communication in 2007 for HK$53 million and he is now buying essentially the same business back for HK$3 million.
- Global Sources expressed an interest in buying Sage's exhibition assets as early as May 2010 and Global Sources continues to be interested in the acquisition at the higher price.
- The Global Sources' letter also notes that Chan Chao International Company Limited ceased to be listed as an Infosky subsidiary as of 31 March 2010 and Global Sources asks why this is the case.
Separately, Global Sources also capitalized on Alibaba.com's troubles by issuing a letter from chairman and co-CEO Merle Hinrichs highlighting the importance of having "adequate systems, processes, and internal controls in place" to protect buyers. The letter went on to state:
"We verify and validate suppliers by personal visits as well as independent third party checks on business registration, credit status and supplier capability. We also provide a star ranking system which reflects the extent of verification we complete for our suppliers. To further safe-guard buyers and minimize fraudulent activity, we have a clear separation of the sales team and supplier review processes, reputable third party services to confirm and validate each supplier, and clear policies to address complaints received about suppliers."
It has been a busy week for Global Sources...