Li Ka-shing is the Wirepuller on PCCW sale

September 21, 2006 at 3:29 am (Companies, Hong Kong)

Since Francis Leung, a former senior executive at Citigroup in Hong Kong, bought 23 percent stake of PCCW from Richard Li, son of Li Ka-shing, news has been going around that it’s Li Ka-shing who made loans to Leung for the take-over. Li however, had been constantly denying any connections with the deal.

The truth came out today. Li did wield his power behind the curtain. He loaned Leung 500 million HK dollars to make the first payment.

After China Netcom expressed their disagreement on PCCW’s selling to a consortium led by Macquaire, rumors went out that Li will take over his son’s company. But it was said that Richard Li rejected his father’s olive branch. Richard is in discord with his father not least because his father’s apathy to the death of his ex-wife (Richard Li’s mother) and a later court to Zhou Kaixuan, the second-largest shareholder of Tom.com. It’s no secret that Li played a big role on Zhou’s absolute control of Tom.com.

Then it’s natural that the superman used the name of Leung to play the game. Li didn’t encounter any over-reaction from mainland, with whom Li maintained a cozy relation.

Richard must have known the real wirepuller is his father. The day PCCW announced the sale, Richard spoke to the press that it’s not the best result he expected. At that time few people understood what he really meant. Now it became obvious that he made a concession to accept Leung, to accept his farther to be more accurate. He’s too determined to sell the biggest telephone company in Hong Kong. His next step is still now known to the public. Some said he is talking with Economic Journal, and some said he is eyeing Run-run Shaw’s TV channel.

 

For those who want to know more about the news, here is the link to Bloomberg’s report.

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