Antong Holdings, a major domestic container shipping and logistics company in China, has had some assets of the company and the controlling shareholders’ equity interest in the company frozen by courts.
According to Antong Holdings, Southeast Shipbuilding applied with the court to freeze RMB55.7m ($8.06m) worth of assets of Ansheng Shipping due to shipbuilding contract disputes and the court has ruled to freeze several bank accounts of the company and some equity interest in its subsidiaries.
Ansheng Shipping currently has four 640 teu feedermax containerships under construction at Fujian Southeast Shipbuilding. The company didn’t specify the details of the dispute.
Ansheng Shipping revealed a plan in December 2017 to construct a total of twelve 640 teu ships at domestic yards Fujian Southeast Shipbuilding, Fujian Mawei Shipbuilding and Nantong Xiangyu. Each shipyard were to construct four vessels.
The company ordered four ships at Southeast Shipbuilding and Splash understands that orders for the remaining eight have not materialised yet.
In the meantime, the company said a court has frozen a total of 54.32% Antong Holdings shares owned by Guo Dongsheng and Guo Dongze, the two controlling shareholders of the company, and it is still in the process of finding the reason for the action.
The company is now actively making efforts to solve the issues.
Antong Holdings has also been warned by China Securities Regulatory Commission last week for providing RMB2.476bn ($358m) funds to its president Guo Dongze for personal use. Guo has returned all the funds and sent an open letter to all the shareholders and employees to apologise for his behaviour.
The board of Antong has decided to suspend Guo’s salary for two years as punishment.
Alphaliner ranks Antong Holding as the 15th largest container shipping company in the world, controlling a fleet of 123 ships with total capacity of 148,264 teu, which also makes it the largest domestic container shipping company in China.