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May Wang’s company invests in Genesis Research and Development Corp New Zealand

 

The potential investor in the takeover of Crafar dairy farming empire, UBNZ Funds Management, announced that it had bought a controlling stake of 19.9% in Genesis Research.

 

Genesis Research and Development Corp. is an Auckland based biotechnology firm for which it is reported that the May Wang’s company paid an estimated $446,278 for. According to the company’s Chief Executive Officer, Stephen Hall, the investment amount was raised by Genesis from the group of investors represented by UBNZ via the placement of 7.4 million shares at 6c per share and expected to raise more capital from them.

 

Hall said that UBNZ had approached Genesis Research and Development Corp. over the investment and the company would be seeking shareholder approval if it decides to take a bigger stake in Genesis, as it had already signaled through its interest.

 

UBNZ is made up of Chinese investors that are currently on a quest to purchase about $1.5 billion of New Zealand dairy farms, amongst them those belonging to the failed Crafar farming operation.

 

The Chinese investors in UBNZ are led by May Wang, a controversial businesswoman with debt worth $22 million she owes her creditors from her collapsed property development company.  However, Hall said the company saw no problems with May, noting that, whereas she has had her financial woes in the past, Ms May is an intelligent and astute individual and is currently moving forward with her businesses.

 

Hall’s company as well reported that it was evaluating the potential in Dairy industry product development and research, to build on Genesis’ work in immunology and inflammation.

 

Speaking during an interview, Hall noted that such investments are more orienting to shorter term, lower risk projects and are more product centered. Traditionally, Genesis Research and Development has centered its production on human health, but with lots of research into agricultural biotech, out of which it has had some products it considered of economic interest.

 

In May, Genesis announced the closure of operations in New Zealand, resulting in the loss of nine jobs due to financial hiccups after making investments in a high risk sector, experiencing the slump in the global financial markets. Hall was pleased with the UBNZ investment as it allows Genesis to continue its New Zealand operations. Genesis was in discussions with possible investors in its Solirna Biosciences, to allow further development of its genetic technology. Other Genesis assets would be retained until value could be realized for shareholders, he said.

 

29 June 2010.

 

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