A recent sale of a 6 percent stake in Hanergy Thin Film Power Group Ltd. by its founder was not a sell-off, its parent says.
Hanergy Holding Group Ltd., the Chinese parent of the solar technology company, made the announcement on its website two days after a filing to the Hong Kong stock exchange showed that Li Hejun, founder and majority owner of the beleaguered unit, had agreed to reduce his stake by about 6 percent.
The filing provided an event code that designated the change as “entering into a contract to sell shares of the listed corporation”, the Wall Street Journal reports.
The closely held parent said in the statement that the share sale was part of a “debt financing arrangement related to cooperation with a financial institution” but did not elaborate.
A Hanergy Holding spokesman said the company sought to clarify “misunderstanding in the market” but declined to comment further.
Regulatory filings Monday showed Li has agreed to sell about 2.5 billion of his shares at 18 fen (3 US cents) a share to unidentified parties.
That would put the company’s market value at approximately US$1.16 billion, down from US$21.06 billion when the shares were suspended in Hong Kong.
Hanergy Thin Film’s shares — at least two-thirds of which were owned by Li as of December — skyrocketed between November 2014 and May 2015, temporarily making him the richest man in China.
Its stock price plummeted 47 percent on May 20 in just minutes before trading was halted at its request and the shares have remained frozen since then.
Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission in May said it was investigating Hanergy Thin Film, although it did not say why.
The company in July said the SFC was most concerned with the large number of connected transactions between the parent company and the unit.
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