SINGAPORE (Mar 5): IPCO International has sacked Carlson Smith from his post as Chief Financial Officer from Feb 27 on grounds of misconduct.

Smith, 63, will be replaced new substantial shareholder James Moffatt Blythman.

This follows a Jan 19 EGM requisitioned by Blythman to oust Smith as CFO, among others.

To recap, Blythman became a substantial shareholder of IPCO last year on Oct 4 after paying $1.6 million for a 14.24% stake in IPCO.

Removing Smith from his post was among Blythman’s list of resolutions which the latter had submitted in a written requisition to IPCO’s board in the same month.  

See: New IPCO shareholder Blythman calls for EGM to oust leadership

See: IPCO’s board receives written EGM requisition from shareholder Blythman

In a filing last Thursday, the group says its dismissal of Smith is based on several grounds of “misconduct”, the first being his continued absence from IPCO’s office, and failure to conduct on-site visits of the group’s subsidiaries in China and the US, where he was the key officer for the past four years.   

Smith also failed to inform shareholders that his passport had been impounded since 2014 – which affects his ability as executive director and CFO to oversee the company’s US subsidiary, Capri Investments – as well as his decision to surrender Capri’s right to future land development without consulting IPCO’s board.

IPCO on Friday announced the appointment of Blythman saying it had deemed him suitable for CFO after considering his track record, age, working experience and capabilities and other relevant factors for appointment for the post.

Blythman, 33, is a CPA (Australia) and Certified Fraud Examiner.

He has held various positions in China and Australia since 2010, and most recently serves as director of Meridian Equities in Singapore.

IPCO’s former CEO is Quah Su Ling, who, together with John Soh and IPCO’s interim CEO Goh Hin Calm, are now facing charges for their roles in the Oct 2013 penny stock saga.

See: Court denies bail for John Soh; cites flight risk and danger of witness tampering

Shares in IPCO last traded on 1 March at 0.3 cent.

*This article has been updated to reflect a correction. Smith had informed IPCO that his passport was impounded.