PCCW, SFC to probe into vote-tampering allegations

PCCW has launched a probe into alleged attempts to influence the vote on the proposed privatization of the company.

But the company said the vote on the $2.2 billion buyout plan by chairman Richard Li and mainland operator China Unicom will proceed today.

It said it had no knowledge of any improper share transfers made by shareholders.

Hong Kong's Securities and Futures Commission has also begun an investigation into the claims by corporate activist David Webb that thousands of shares had been transferred to "several hundred" individuals listing their address as the head office of insurance company Fortis.

Webb stated that these transactions were most likely made by a small group or a single individual.

Formerly known as Pacific Century Insurance, Fortis was a subsidiary of Richard Li's company Pacific Century Regional Developments until May 2007.

PCCW said that it never held any shares in Fortis Asia or Pacific Century Insurance.