Allied Tech gets another time extension for AGM, Q1 results

Catalist-listed Allied Technologies has received another time extension from the Singapore Exchange (SGX) to hold its annual general meeting (AGM), release its financial statements for the first quarter ended March 31, and issue its sustainability report for fiscal 2018.

The precision engineering firm will hold its AGM and announce its first-quarter results by July 25, and issue the report by July 10, it said in a filing late on Sunday night.

The company had requested a further extension of 31/2 weeks on June 12.

In the filing, Allied Tech said that its auditors Ernst & Young would need more time to complete the audit for last year, as they were still reviewing management's responses and waiting for the group to provide certain documents, especially in the light of the $33 million in missing funds held in an escrow account with law firm JLC Advisors.

Allied Tech made headlines last month when news broke that some $33 million of its funds parked with JLC Advisors reportedly went missing while JLC managing partner Jeffrey Ong's whereabouts were unknown. He had fled to Malaysia but has been arrested, repatriated and charged in Singapore with 22 cheating offences, none yet related to Allied Tech. Ong's case will come up for mention on July 11.

Allied Tech in its Sunday filing said that since the auditors' last review, there have been developments that require reassessment and additional audit procedures.

The auditors need to look again at the forecast and impairment issues for both the Asia Box Office acquisition and the Activpass acquisition, given that the escrow funds have not been recovered.

They will also have to conduct a going concern assessment for all subsidiaries, and review the treatment of the escrow funds.

The financial statements for last year and certain key sections of the annual report will need to be updated, the company said.

On June 14, Allied Tech appointed PwC as an independent special auditor, as directed by SGX's regulatory arm, to investigate the circumstances surrounding certain transactions, including the placing of the missing funds with JLC Advisors.

PwC will also look into whether there was any potential breach of the Companies Act, Catalist rules, Securities and Futures Act and other laws and regulations, and review Allied Tech's corporate governance and internal controls and propose remediation actions and areas of improvement.

Allied Tech has also adjourned its extraordinary general meeting (EGM) - originally convened on June 4 - to take place only after the completion of the special audit. The date, time and place for the EGM will be announced in due course.

SGX had earlier granted the company a time extension to hold its AGM and announce its first quarter results by July 1, as well as to issue its sustainability report together with the annual report by June 14.

According to Catalist rules, Allied Tech was originally supposed to convene its AGM by April 30. It was also required to release its first quarter results by May 15 and issue the sustainability report by May 31.

Trading in Allied Tech shares has been suspended since early last month. The firm recommended on May 8 that its trading halt be converted to a voluntary trading suspension until the concerns raised by its auditors have been resolved and a special audit undertaken.

Its shares last traded at 1.1 cents on May 2, before it requested for the halt on May 3.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 25, 2019, with the headline 'Allied Tech gets another time extension for AGM, Q1 results'. Subscribe