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Datapulse hires Lee & Lee to review internal controls linked to hairy diversification

TROUBLED firm Datapulse Technology on Wednesday said it has appointed Lee & Lee to undertake an internal controls review.

This comes after the disk drive maker's move into the shampoo and hairspray business sparked a board tussle and scrutiny by regulators.

Datapulse had been directed by the Singapore Exchange to reappoint independent professionals to conduct an independent review of the company's internal controls and corporate governance practices.

Datapulse earlier appointed RHTLaw Taylor Wessing (RHTLaw) as the "independent reviewer". But SGX noted that RHT Capital, a company within the RHT Group of companies as is RHTLaw, has been the continuing sponsor of Catalist-listed OEL Holdings since Feb 18, 2012.

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Low Beng Tin, the chairman of the board of OEL Holdings, is also the non-executive chairman of Datapulse, SGX said.

The Datapulse saga unfolded when accountant Ng Siew Hong became Datapulse's majority owner after buying a 29 per cent stake from Ng Cheow Chye at a significant premium last November. A new board was then formed on Dec 11, 2017 and four days later, a quick acquisition of Wayco Manufacturing to diversify into haircare products was completed.

Datapulse said the S$3.5 million buy, which didn't involve shareholders' approval, was part of a diversification plan, lest the company be deemed a cash company and face the risk of trading suspension.

Shares of Datapulse closed at S$0.365, down half a cent, on Wednesday.