Wondering why you may not have heard of hacking collective Anonymous for a while? Because, as it appears, the ad hoc organization has been busy assembling Anonymous Analytics, a public equity research entity (and we venture to guess focused mostly on the short side) whose motto is "Acquiring information through unconventional means" and follows up with "You should have expected us." Think of them as Muddy Waters on steroids: no regulation, no supervision, no accountability - just pure content, and credibility-driven merit (or, of course, lack thereof): a model which if validated will totally revolutionize the field of public company research. Well, someone who certainly should have expected AnonAnalytics is Chaoda Modern Agriculture, a HK$ 8.5 billion market cap company, or on par with Sino Forest from its pre-fraud days, which as Anon alleges is one of "Hong Kong Exchange’s largest, and longest running frauds." As the below report demonstrates, Anon has presented a serious case to prove just that stunning allegation, and if ultiamtely validated, the outcome for stock longs will be very unpleasant: "Theoretically, Chaoda may be worth HK$0.60 per share (currently Hk$2.50) derived from a blended NAV and DDM approach. However, based on the evidence in this report, as well as information we have decided not to release, we believe Chaoda may face delisting." If proven correct, this report will have an even greater impact on capital markets than Muddy Waters take down of Sino Forest, as it will finally integrate the two formerly completely disparate worlds of hacking and software analysis, opening up a world of very concerning possibilities for the world's public companies.
Chaoda has an extensive history of deceiving investors and shareholders. Since its IPO, there have been several resignations by auditors, executives, and directors. We provide proof that management has consistently lied about the reasons behind these resignations. We further show that management has time after time misled investors about the Company’s capital requirements. To this end, management has assured shareholders that the company was sufficiently capitalized, only to tap the capital markets – often within several weeks.
Rounds of financing are required because Chaoda is overstating its cash balance, exaggerating its revenue, and falsifying its financial statements. We show that reported revenue numbers make no sense and provide statistical proof as to the improbability of Chaoda’s reported margins.
Much of the money that is raised is transferred out of the Company by management and third parties. These transfers are carried out under the cover of grossly inflated capex spending, and related party transactions. We provide proof that payments made to a ‘major supplier’ owned by the CEO are simply being transferred to a shell company with no business operations and de minimis assets.
Furthermore, we show that the CEO has used shareholder money to invest in risky projects without commensurate returns. One of these projects was a poorly operated orange plantation (Asian Citrus) that even Pepsi Co. found too risky. While this project robbed shareholders of high returns, they enriched the CEO through similar related party transactions.
Finally, we show that Chaoda is paying another fraudulent company to provide it with positive marketing exposure. In a bizarre twist worthy of a mystery novel, this saga involves Nobel laureates and some of the Western world’s most renowned academics.
Theoretically, Chaoda may be worth HK$0.60 per share (currently Hk$2.50) derived from a blended NAV and DDM approach. However, based on the evidence in this report, as well as information we have decided not to release, we believe Chaoda may face delisting.
Full report (pdf)