Boardroom tussle intensifies at Stone Master

Koh: ‘Everything went well at first, but at the eleventh hour they did not agree.’

Company says it will not recognise EGM held to remove Koh

KUALA LUMPUR: The boardroom tussle at PN17 company STONE MASTER CORP BHD is heating up with the current board of directors serving its two largest shareholders with a claim totalling RM1.38bil for allegedly breaching their fiduciary duties.

According to its managing director Datuk Koh Mui Tee, the two are Datuk Karen Lee Fong Yin @ Lee Vun Ya and Datuk Eii Ching Siew, who holds a 22.29% and 9.45% stake in the company respectively, Koh claimed that they had rejected a business turnaround plan and it had allegedly derailed the revival of the loss-making marble and granite product manufacturer.

“To turn around the company, we have about 23 vendors from China to come on board with a total of RM3.05bil agency fees. We paid RM11.59mil as non-refundable deposit and the balance RM3.038bil was supposed to be paid by the special issuance of shares that needed shareholders approval.

“Everything went well at first, but at the eleventh hour they did not agree,” he told reporters after walking out of an EGM that sought to remove him as director here yesterday.

Lee had called for an EGM to remove Koh, executive director Datuk Lee Hwa Cheng and the remaining eight directors from Stone Master’s board.

Reporters could not gain access into the EGM but loud arguments were audible from the meeting room.

Stone Master has filed an injunction to stop the meeting following an allegation that Lee might have tampered with the EGM’s proxy forms last week.

The company, in a filing with Bursa Malaysia, said it would not recognise the EGM.

It said the meeting was not in accordance with the articles of association of the company. It also said Low Eng Tack, a proposed independent director suggested by Lee, had acted as chairman of the meeting which Stome Master had objected.

The statement said Low had asked the company secretary if there was a quorum at yesterday’s meeting.

However, the company secretary could not confirm if there was one because he did not receive details about accounts and identity card numbers of the shareholders.

It also claimed that the scrutineers appointed by the company were not allowed to perform their duties.

Stone Master also told Bursa that it had received a writ and statement of claim from Starfield Capital Sdn Bhd demanding RM18mil from the company. Stone Master said Starfield Capital filed the claim dated May 26 via Messrs Tan Norizan & Associates.

The Starfield suit is expected to have material financial and operational impact on Stone Master.

Stone Master said Starfield Capital was also seeking other legal remedies including interest and cost.

Koh said the company would discuss the matter with Starfield.



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