Friday, June 22, 2018
Martin Hennecke

Lawyers set to vet TVB shares
The Office of the Communications Authority says counsel has been hired to look into whether the share structure of Television Broadcasts Limited (0511) complies with the Broadcasting Ordinance.

It said its legal advisers will investigate TVB's application to change the shareholding structure and see if organizations or people did not hand in full information.

Meanwhile, the counsel will also check whether TVB fulfilled the statutory declaration and legal commitment previously submitted to the authority.

It has already sent a letter to TVB informing it of its move and inviting a response as well as additional information. TVB replied that it will provide any suitable information.

The storm began when the Securities and Futures Commission revealed TVB's vice chairman Li Ruigang is the major shareholder after TVB applied for changing the shareholding structure by repurchasing some stakes.

It triggered questions about violating the Broadcasting Ordinance, which requires the broadcasting licensee to be a Hong Kong local.

The repurchasing plan was also considered as another way to strengthen the position of Li Ruigang as well as his investment company, Young Lion.

TVB said on Wednesday it has applied for a judicial review of the judgment earlier announced by the SFC. The commission has listed some requests, including disclosing the stake holding of Young Lion and all details of the stake structure, for approving its repurchasing plan.

TVB chief executive Mark Lee Po- on said the company cannot fulfill all the requests, which involve huge legal proceedings.

Lee also said it did not conceal any information about the shareholding of Li. He also noted it cannot expect the legal proceedings to hold up the repurchasing for a long time.

In other news, i-Cable Communication (1097) is to hold a meeting to vote on a plan to inject capital. Its chairman, Stephen Ng Tin-hoi, expects most shareholders to accept the plan. He hopes to see a high vote rate.

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