Firm punished for Sinovel IPO

CHINA: Essence Securities, a Chinese firm engaged in comprehensive securities business, is to have its operations suspended for three months because of its sponsorship of Sinovel's IPO in 2011.

Sinovel, which recorded the IPO price of CNY 90 ($14) per share on the Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE), the highest wind IPO at the time, was later found to have run inaccuraccies in its performance report for 2013.

As sponsor of the Sinovel IPO, Essence, according to the country's regulatory rules, was expected to continue supervising the listed company's behaviour for at least two complete accounting years.

Essence has currently 32 projects on hand for IPO sponsorship, which constitute 4% of all projects on the national waiting list.

Just a day before this news came out, Sinovel issued a second warning on upcoming temporary suspension of trading of its shares on the SSE. And in another public announcement made on the same day, Sinovel said Su Zipeng, a vice president of the company, had resigned the post "for personal reasons".

On 31 January 2013, Sinovel issued the first warning to investors, citing an SSE's ruling in May 2013 that the company would have its shares suspended temporarily soon after its annual report for 2014 was publicly released. During the period, SSE will decide if it is necessary to remove the company. Sinovel reported negative profits in 2012 and 2013. If result for 2014 are again in the red, the misfortune would be inevitable.

On 31 January 2015, Sinovel posted a preliminary assessment of annual performance, which showed it has achieved a positive net profit of CNY 19 million ($3 million) in 2014. If this can be confirmed by auditing, the company may avoid delisting.