Creative co-founder nets $1.8m from share sales

Ex-chief technical officer capitalises on recent price rally

Creative Technology co-founder Ng Kai Wa has cashed out on a small fraction of his holdings in the home-grown technology company, capitalising on a recent price rally that has risen multiple folds in the space of a week. He netted a cool $1.8 million from selling 200,000 shares from his extensive holding.

On Monday, he earned $939,150 from selling 104,350 shares. That was the day the shares hit heights not seen in a decade after bullish reports emerged about its "3D audio" technology.

They soared to as high as $9.77 in intra-day trade, before closing up $3.62 at $8.75.

The next day, he cashed out on another 95,650 shares, which netted him $868,799, according to Singapore Exchange filings posted yesterday after trading hours.

Altogether, he sold the shares at an average price of $9.04 apiece.

Mr Ng, who resigned from Creative in July 1995 as chief technical officer (CTO), still owns 2.14 million shares of the company, or 3.055 per cent of the issued capital.

He remains an independent, non-executive director of Creative.

In the same year he quit his CTO post, Mr Ng co-founded broadband access IP telephony supplier InnoMedia and is now chairman and chief executive officer.

Creative last week showcased its new Super X-Fi audio product - which can be plugged into devices to deliver a listening experience similar to how people hear in real life - to analysts' cheer.

DBS analyst Sachin Mittal said in a March 1 report that the new technology "could be a much-needed lifeline for the company".

Creative shares began their rally on Feb 23, when they nearly doubled in value, prompting a Singapore Exchange query.

The surge came after The Business Times ran a story about Super X-Fi, following an interview with Creative co-founder and chief executive Sim Wong Hoo, who said it was the culmination of US$100 million (S$131 million) in research spending over more than 20 years.

Creative's dongle is expected to be released in the middle of the year at a price of US$150.

Creative was a former investor darling after storming the market with its Sound Blaster audio processing card, widely used in the 1990s in personal computers.

But its sound products have struggled to stay ahead due to competition from the likes of Apple and, at the low end, cheaper China-made alternatives.

Creative recorded a second-quarter net loss of US$4.2 million for the three months to Dec 31, as revenues sagged 6 per cent year-on-year to US$20.9 million.

Creative shares yesterday fell $1.22 to $7.08 as traders took profit following the steep price run-up.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 08, 2018, with the headline 'Creative co-founder nets $1.8m from share sales'. Print Edition | Subscribe