Boon Tat Street stabbing victim was previously nominated for entrepreurship award

TNS Ocean Lines where Spencer Tuppani used to work at. ST PHOTO: SEAN LIM

SINGAPORE - The victim in the Boon Tat Street stabbing incident, Mr Spencer Sanjay s/o Shamlal Tuppani, had been lauded as a notable entrepreneur.

Mr Tuppani had been the chief executive officer of port operations and logistics service provider TNS Ocean Lines and had been appointed as a director of the company in July 2006.

In 2014, he was nominated as a finalist for the Outstanding Entrepreneur Award at the Singapore Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry-DBS Singapore Indian Entrepreneur Awards. He was credited with steering the company back to profitability in 2014, after weathering the 2007 global economic crisis.

One source in the industry who did not want to be named, said that he spoke Hokkien and Mandarin and had been in the industry for years.

Last year, TNS was acquired by SGX-listed company GKE for S$9 million, in a mix of S$2.7 million cash and GKE shares. The deal was completed on Nov 30.

Mr Tuppani was one of the five TNS shareholders. The other four were listed as Tan Cheng Cheng, Tan Meng Chuan, Tan Nam Seng and Sern Chia Lung.

As part of the deal, the first three shareholders had to guarantee to GKE that TNS would achieve a net profit before tax of at least S$3.5 million for three years, from the period between Dec 1, 2016 and Nov 30, 2019.

If they did not achieve the profit, they would have to cough up, in cash, the difference between the profit target and the actual number.

The agreement also included the three having to sign a moratorium undertaking which meant that they could not sell the shares they had received for a period of time, subject to certain conditions.

Mr Tan Nam Seng and Chia Sern Lung did not have to sign the profit guarantee.

GKE said acquiring TNS would broaden the firm's existing logistics services platform, particularly in port operations.

TNS had posted a net profit for the quarter ended Sept 30, 2016, of S$229,000.

A GKE Corp spokesman said it was unable to comment as investigations are ongoing.

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