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Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Superman Flies to the Rescue, Supposedly...

I'm sure there's not many people out there that bother reading the Guardian's "Clogger" section in the football pages. Its full of silly pictures, an on-going conversation between Pardew and Boothroyd ( which I suppose will now thankfully end ) and other meaningless paragraphs that appear to have wandered over from Private Eye.

So I suppose I shouldn't pass on what is probably either a complete load of nonsense or one of their little jokes about little old Charlton, that yesterday they had one tiny paragraph headed "Money Man Li Ka-shing - Charlton Athletic."

The "report" reads: "The worlds 10th richest human - one place higher than Roman Abramovich - has made a fortune out of electricity so should be able to create another shock by giving a struggling side the power to surge up the table. Should know when to pull the plug."

And that's it, no further explanation is given. Its not April 1st and I can find no other mention in any other paper so I don't know what they mean. But before we throw the story into the rubbish I can tell you that Li Ka-shing is from Hong Kong, is 72 and is called Superman.

And to prove that the report is best ignored, Li Ka-shing is not Mr Electric as stated but is into Ports, Phones and Oil with a few flowers thrown in. His conglomerate, Hutchison Whampoa Ltd, is the world's largest independent port operator, with facilities everywhere from China to Panama to Britain. He has control of Canada's Husky Energy Inc. and has gained from rising oil prices. His decision to sell his stake in the British telecom company Orange PLC in late 1999 sparked a rush into European telecoms. By the time the dealmaking was complete in February, Li and other Hutchison shareholders had netted a $22 billion profit.

Like all good Chinese businessmen, Li, was a refugee from China who started out selling plastic flowers in the 1950s. The very bad news is that he is a renowned and cold-blooded asset swapper. After a hard-won battle for a German telecom license, Li backed out of the deal in August, saying it was too costly. Since then, telecom stocks around the world have tumbled.

Apparently his ability to sniff out good deals and walk away from bad ones has made Hutchison one of Hong Kong's largest companies. He won't think much of the Addicks then.


Graham said...

FYI, he owns the Superdrug and Savers drug store chains in the UK as well as the 3 mobile telephone network. Could easily afford Charlton from what he found down the back of the sofa. But whether he'd be interested is a totally different matter.

Ken J said...

velly intlesting :-)