Archive for October, 2008

CIC Energy appoints Financial Advisor for the Mmamabula Energy Project

Friday, October 31st, 2008

On October 29, the BVI company CIC Energy Corp announced the appointment of financial advisors for financing of the Mmamabula Energy Project, located in Botswana. London-based investment bank NM Rothschild and Sons Limited will become the Project Financial Advisors for the planned debt financing of the Project, which will be involved in all aspects of the project financing, will participate in term sheet and loan documentation negotiations. Rothschild’s will also co-ordinate and manage the lender group and the financing process, in order to meet the Mmamabula Energy Project’s timelines.

The expected lending group includes development finance institutions with a mandate to fund projects like the Mmamabula Energy Project, having a high socio-economic development impact in the region. It is also anticipated that certain export credit agencies will participate in the funding in support of the export of goods and services from their host countries for the construction of the Mmamabula Energy Project. The whole financing plan is expected to be completed by a tranche of funding from South African commercial banks, with whom the BVI corporation continues discussions.

Also, CIC Energy announced the changes to the BVI company’s board of directors. Dr. Reuel Khoza and Dr. Mandla Gantsho have decided to resign from the board of directors of the company, due to a potential conflict of interest, which arose from their being also the directors of Sasol Limited. With the advancement of the BVI company’s Coal-to-Hydrocarbons project, this double directorship was the potential source of the conflict of interest. Two new directors will be nominated in due course. Mr. Warren Newfield, who was Co-Chairman of CIC Energy with Dr. Khoza, will become the Chairman of CIC Energy, effective immediately.

BVI Group’s Master Fund ranked third by Bloomberg

Sunday, October 26th, 2008

Venulum Group, multinational private wealth management firm, registered and headquartered in the British Virgin Islands, has reported that its Master Fund is ranked third by Bloomberg among all mortgage backed arbitrage funds in all jurisdictions. Master Fund consists of BVI Group’s subsidiaries Venulum Property Investment Limited, Venulum LLC and Venulum Property Limited.

Venulum Property Investment produced the excellent returns and helped lift the overall performance of the funds. Giles Cadman, Chairman of the Venulum Group, explained that they “have an established team who utilise their skill and experience to create value.” By his words, the group is often criticised for not taking enough risk in the property market, but the last few months have shown that “markets can change and wipe out value very quickly.”

CFO of Venulum Group, Richard Lowden, said that as Venulum is a private company owned by a family trust, and investing on behalf of private individuals, the opportunities to compare its returns with competing funds are limited.

The funds of the BVI Group are privately held, so its listings are not in the public domain, but brokers and independent financial advisors who subscribe to Bloomberg have access to them. The process of registering company’s funds with Bloomberg involves due diligence that is carried out by Bloomberg on Venulum and the Private Placement Memorandums of the funds. Then, it is the responsibility of Group’s BVI administrator Folio Administrators Limited to update the monthly share prices.

Group’s SFO Richard Lowden is sure that the funds will hold up in the dowturn, because the company has taken the risk by focusing on the public sector housing market, and investing cautiously over the past two years, in expectation of the current downturn.

BVI-registered company signs MoU on 600 MW hydropower project in Burma

Thursday, October 23rd, 2008

According to Myanmar state-run newspaper, the officials of Burma on October 9, 2008 signed the latest memorandum of understanding (MoU) on hydropower projects with the Thailand-based Italian-Thai Development Public Co. Ltd and the Singapore-based Windfall Energy Services Ltd, the offshore company which is registered in the British Virgin Islands. The MoU for a reported 600 megawatt hydropower plant is the latest in a series of investment projects in Burma’s hydropower market. The plant will be located in southern Burma on the Tanintharyi River in Tenasserim Division, and reportedly will produce over 35 billion kwh annually. The newspaper report did not provide any further details of this deal.

As of 2008, hydropower projects represent 43% of FDI in military-ruled Burma – twice as much as the oil and gas industry, and six times more than tourism sector. In addition to Thailand and Singapore, other  countries actively engaged in Burma’s hydropower market are China, South Korea, India and Bangladesh. Also, foreign direct investment (FDI) level in Burma, which has now achieved its highest level since 1988, is dominated by hydropower projects.

A-Power Energy announces the dismiss of its Chief Financial Officer

Sunday, October 19th, 2008

The Audit Committee of A-Power Energy Generation Systems, Ltd. has completed an internal review that confirmed assertions made by NASDAQ, relating to the omission of certain biographical information of Edward Meng, which was corrected in BVI company’s filing in July 2008. A letter written to NASDAQ from Mr. Meng’s former employer stated that he had breached that company’s Code of Conduct by being employed by that company on a full-time basis while at the same time being employed by A-Power as its part time CFO. After some deliberations and multiple consultations with NASDAQ, the Board of Directors of the BVI company determined that the appropriate response would be immediate termination of Mr. Meng’s employment.

By words of Jinxiang Lu, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the BVI-based A-Power, company’s internal audit determined that while Mr. Meng’s other position did not present a competitive concern and did not have any effect on his performance in the company, this information should have been disclosed. He noted that Mr. Meng has been an important member of their management team, who played a critical role in A-Power’s transition to a US public company, in the growth of distributed generation business, and in the startup of BVI company’s wind turbine production business.

Meanwhile, John Lin,  A-Power’s Corporate Secretary, Chief Strategy Officer and member of the Board of Directors, has been appointed Interim CFO while the search for Edward Meng’s successor is continuing.