Hong Kong Regulator Files Lawsuit Against UBS, Standard Chartered Over 2009 IPO

Josh O'Neill Assistant Editor 19 January 2017


The parties have 14 days to respond to the regulator's allegations.

UBS and Standard Chartered were tight-lipped when contacted by this publication for comment on a lawsuit reportedly filed by a Hong Kong regulator against the banks and four other firms over charges of market misconduct relating to the 2009 initial public offering of a Chinese timber company.

The Securities and Futures Commission is seeking unspecified damages for “market misconduct” over the IPO prospectus of China Forestry Holdings, in addition to the firm's 2009 annual report, its annual results in the same year and the results for the first six months of 2010, according to Reuters, which cited court documents filed with Hong Kong's High Court earlier this week.

The SFC also sued China Forestry Holdings itself, the firm's co-founders Li Kwok Cheong and Li Han Chun, and KPMG, the company's auditor, court documents reportedly showed.

Both UBS and Standard Chartered declined to comment when contacted by WealthBriefingAsia, with the latter party citing “legality issues”.

The parties have 14 days to respond to the regulator's allegations.

China Forestry Holdings raised $216 million in its 2009 IPO, but its shares have been suspended since January 2011 and the company is in liquidation and in the process of being delisted after its auditor said it had found potential accounting irregularities. 

Register for WealthBriefing today

Gain access to regular and exclusive research on the global wealth management sector along with the opportunity to attend industry events such as exclusive invites to Breakfast Briefings and Summits in the major wealth management centres and industry leading awards programmes