SINGAPORE (June 24): A group of individuals who joined hands to wrest control of Magnus Energy from its former board, has fallen apart in just half a year.

On June 24, the company announced that Anthony Kuek Eng Chye, citing “irreconcilable differences” with executive director and CEO Charles Madhavan, has resigned from his post as independent non-executive director.

The differences were over the entry of certain interested person transactions that took place during the Q3FY2020 ended March 31 2020, and a specific note in the financial statement was cited: “The Group has not obtained a general mandate from shareholders for IPTs. All IPTs during the 3Q2020 were below S$100,000.”

Magnus Energy did not elaborate which are the IPTs that are in dispute between Kuek and Madhavan.

According to the company’s June 24 announcement, the two men have differences over “sustainability concerns” of the company’s finances as well.

Kuek’s resignation came just shortly after another director Ong Chin Yew quit on June 14, also citing “differences of opinion” with Madhavan. Ong, who owns 7.28% of the company, was its non-independent, non-executive director.

Yet another director quit recently: Christopher B. O’Connor, who resigned on May 8 as an independent, non-executive director.

Magnus Energy and O’Connor had tried applying for a so-called “secondary directorship” in view of his employment pass which is held with Golden Rock Capital Advisers, where O’Connor was a partner and chief investment officer.

The applications were rejected twice by the Ministry of Manpower and therefore the board decided O’Connor couldn’t carry on in his role.

With the resignation of Kuek, the board of Magnus Energy is left with just Madhavan and Farooq Ahmad Mann, an independent non-executive director. 

The company will try to find new directors within two months so that it can fulfil requirements of having at least three directors.

At an extraordinary general meeting held on Jan 9, Madhavan, Ong, Kuek and O’Connor were elected into the board of Magnus Energy.

One of their first acts was to terminate Luke Ho Khee Yong from his position as the CEO.

On Feb 29, some two months after Ho left, the company received a letter of demand on behalf of one Thong Soon Seng, asking for the repayment of loans and interest totalling $5,118,572.49, allegedly borrowed by Ho purportedly on behalf of the company.

On March 3, Magnus Energy filed a writ of summons against Ho and six other ousted or former directors. The company claims that they have breached their duties and obligations and want to recover damages for a series of deals that have turned sour under their collective watch.

Madhavan, Ong and Kuek, have a common link other than to Magnus Energy: GSS Energy. Kuek is the non-executive chairman of GSS Energy, while Madhavan and Ong were shareholders of Cepu Sakti Energy (CSE), which GSS Energy acquired in 2014.