Ashmore denies Ongpin-led Alphaland's allegations

Posted at 02/05/14 6:19 PM

MANILA, Philippines - The Ashmore group on Wednesday fired back at Roberto Ongpin-led Alphaland Corp., which had accused the UK-based fund of misrepresenting a share sale.

In a statement, Ashmore denied Alphaland's allegations, saying its sale of 49.6 million Alphaland shares to Credit Suisse (Singapore) Limited in December 2012 was
"executed in compliance with Philippine law". The transaction was also disclosed at the Philippine Stock Exchange, and all taxes were paid, it added.

"Credit Suisse (Singapore) Limited is the full legal and beneficial owner of the shares and Alphaland Corporation issued a new share certificate in the name of Credit Suisse (Singapore) Limited having been informed of the transaction. There is nothing preventing or requiring a sale of the shares by Credit Suisse (Singapore) Limited at any time and any suggestion to the contrary is inaccurate," Ashmore said.

Alphaland had earlier filed a criminal complaint before the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) against two executives of Ashmore group for misrepresenting a share sale to meet the PSE's public float requirement.

Alphaland alleged that Ashmore simulated the share sale, and continued to own the 2.5% stake.

"Ashmore and its executives categorically deny all allegations of misrepresentation as contained in these media reports, and maintain that their actions in relation to the transaction were executed in compliance with Philippine law," the UK fund said.

Ongpin and the Ashmore group have been embroiled in a legal battle since last year. Ongpin and Ashmore clashed over the latter's refusal to inject more funds into Alphaland.