SINGAPORE (Jan 14): Kimly, the coffeeshop operator, is seeking the re-election of its executive chairman Lim Hee Liat (main image) who is under investigation, at an annual general meeting (AGM) to be held on Jan 30.

See: Kimly chairman and director under probe; $16 mil acquisition cancelled

On the same day, shareholders will also vote for the renewal of its share buyback mandate and the renewal of shareholders' mandate for interested person transactions.

Lim and Kimly executive director Chia Cher Khiang are under investigation by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) for allegedly flouting the Securities and Futures Act over the aborted purchase of a drinks company, Asian Story Corporation (ASC). Both men were arrested and later released on bail.

On Nov 29, Kimly announced the cancellation of the acquisition of ASC, which was completed only in July 2018.

See also: Kimly acquires seller of Asian Story drinks for $16 mil

Of the $16 million cash already paid to vendor and former Pokka marketing executive Wang Chia Ye, $12 million has been returned to Kimly. The remaining $4 million is to be repaid by Wang over three years.

ASC, which has a book value of $448,000, has an existing deal to outsource the production of its drinks to Pokka. This arrangement was made under Alain Ong, former CEO of Pokka International, the Singapore-based subsidiary of the Japanese drinks maker.

Ong was a former non-executive director of Kimly. He is married to MediaCorp actress Vivian Lai, a long-time celebrity endorser of Pokka here in Singapore. Ong is also being investigated by the authorities.

Kimly was one of the hottest IPOs last year. Its offer for 173.8 million new shares at 25 cents per share was 8.3 times subscribed.

See: Kimly IPO 8.3 times subscribed

See also: Coffeeshop operator Kimly launches IPO; to sell 173.8 million new shares at 25 cents each

Shares in Kimly last traded at 24 cents.