SEC orders Okada Manila owner to file amended tender offer for Asiabest, the company through which it seeks to secure backdoor listing
The Philippine Securities and Exchange Commission has ordered Tiger Resort Asia Ltd., owner of the operator of the Okada Manila integrated resort, to file a revised tender offer for the purchase of Asiabest Group International Inc.
Tiger Resort Asia seeks backdoor listing on the Philippine Stock Exchange through the acquisition of Asiabest. SEC has directed the company to file a revised tender offer that includes information about the ongoing legal dispute between Japanese gaming tycoon Kazuo Okada and the people he claims have ousted him illegally as Chairman of Okada Holdings, Universal Entertainment Corp., and Tiger Resort.
The legal proceedings are taking place in a Hong Kong court. Mr. Okada is trying to regain control of Okada Holdings and is suing those responsible for his ouster for fraud and financial crimes. Mr.
Okada was removed from his posts at Okada Holdings and Universal Entertainment, a company he found himself more than five decades ago, in 2017 after reports emerged that he had made improper money transfers without seeking shareholder approval.
Okada Holdings is the owner of Universal Entertainment, which in turn owns Tiger Resort Asia. The latter company is in turn the owner of Tiger Resort Leisure and Entertainment, the company that operates the $2-plus-billion Okada Manila casino resort. The property is located in the heart of the Philippine capital, Manila, and is part of the larger development project known as Entertainment City.
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Revised Tender Offer
The SEC Market and Securities and Regulation Departments Director, Vicente Graciano Felizmenio, has directed Tiger Resort Asia to file an amended tender offer that would include information about the ongoing legal dispute involving Mr. Okada. The move has been requested to “prevent any grave and irreparable damage to shareholders of Asiabest and the investing public.”
Tiger Resort Asia seeks to implement a backdoor listing on the Philippine Stock Exchange for about PHP646.5 million. According to information from local news outlets, several controlling shareholders of Asiabest have sold their ownership, which comprises approximately 200 million shares, for PHP3.23 per share. Tiger Resort Asia thus had to offer to buy the remaining shares of the Philippine-listed company.
The tender offer for all remaining shares of Asiabest began on November 12 and ended on December 12. The closing of the tender offer for the shares by way of block sale through the Philippine Stock Exchange was originally scheduled for December 14, but did not push through.
SEC has instructed Tiger Resort Asia to publish its amended tender offer in two newspapers of general circulation and extend the tender offer period by ten days starting from the issuance of the public notice.
The commission has issued its order after a minority Asiabest shareholder filed a complaint with SEC, seeking a cease and desist order against the casino operator as it had failed to disclose information about the ongoing dispute involving Mr. Okada.
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