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8Telecom reshuffles board after directors quit; reveals changes among major shareholders

INFORMATION communications company 8Telecom International Holdings has replaced two executive directors on its board with two former staff of Eastern Airlines, according to announcements on Tuesday.

The company separately announced changes in the interests of major shareholders, including executive director Wang Zhejun, that had not previously been disclosed.

Wan Guang, 33, and Liu Lu, 40, resigned as executive directors on March 4 after just a few months to pursue other career opportunities and interests. Mr Wan was appointed to 8Telecom's board on Nov 26, 2018, and Mr Liu on Oct 4, 2018.

The mainboard-listed company also announced on Tuesday that Shan Chuanlong, 35, and Long Hong, 36, were appointed as executive directors. Mr Shan, who joined 8Telecom in May 2018, previously worked in the Hong Kong sales department of Eastern Airlines from Oct 2012 to May 2018. Mr Long was senior engineer at Guangzhou Tianhe Internet from 2009 to 2013, and software engineer in Eastern Airlines from 2013 to July 2018.

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Both have no prior experience as director, and will be briefed on the duties, responsibilities and liabilities of directors of companies in Singapore, as well as the regulatory issues relating to 8Telecom to ensure that they are familiar with the company's governance practices. 

They will oversee general operations and office administrative support, and research and identify relevant prospects of business opportunities, interested investors, potential and key stakeholders, and proposals.

The board also said it is in the process of looking for suitable candidates for an independent director position in Singapore and one who will be able to serve as chairman of the audit committee.

8Telecom announced separately that private company Tian Di Internet has become a substantial shareholder of the company after acquiring 12 million shares, or a 10.67 per cent stake in the company, for S$90,000 or 0.75 Singapore cent per share on Feb 27. The purchase price was a sharp discount to 8Telecom's closing price of 4.6 Singapore cents on Feb 27.

Tian Di Internet did not have any shares before the purchase. 

The announcement stated that the shares were acquired through market transactions, but that appears unlikely given the transaction price and the fact that the announcement also revealed that major 8Telecom shareholder Vok Investment Holdings disposed of 12 million shares on the same day. Vok, which previously held a 21.67 per cent stake in 8Telecom, now holds just an 11 per cent shareholding.

8Telecom further disclosed that one Lan Zhihua now controls 100 per cent of Vok and is therefore deemed to be interested in all the shares held by Vok. Ms Lan had not been previously disclosed as a substantial shareholder of 8Telecom.

In July 2017, 8Telecom had stated that Vok was 50 per cent owned by Ms Wang, which gave her a deemed interest in all of Vok's shares. If Ms Lan now holds all of Vok, that would imply Ms Wang ceasing to be interested in Vok's shareholding. But 8Telecom has not disclosed when Ms Wang sold her shares in Vok and if she has ceased to be a substantial shareholder.