Thursday, December 07, 2006

Say "Welcome" to Meda Inc Bhd bosses & owners

Tension at Meda Inc Bhd corporate office

For the last one week, there's tension and excitement at Meda Inc Bhd corporate office.

Meda Inc Bhd group managing director Kenneth Teoh has been visiting this blog regularly. So is his brother Teoh Seng Aun. Even CEO OngBS, Datuk Hii (CEO of SEGi and managing director of EcoFirst) and Teoh's in-law VT have been checking out this blog, not to mention others from the group/hotel. I guess all of them would like to find out about the extent of their dirty laundry being aired in public. (But I will be fair, unlike some other people who hutang until mati).

The Teohs' relative, VT

Meda Inc Bhd insiders say Kenneth Teoh is hopping mad and on a "witch-hunt".

Kenneth Teoh should realise that all their dishonourable and unethical ways will come back to haunt him one day. While suppliers' options are limited by way of taking action against corporate bullies such as Meda Inc Bhd, there is now a new avenue of "citizen journalism". How long can Kenneth Teoh and his associates continue to hide behind their lawyers, draggy expensive law suits and nonsensical trumped-up allegations to avoid paying their suppliers? How long do they think they can continue to lie before they are found out? (I will write about this in another post).

My intention is not to defame anyone. Many of the corporate practices at Meda Inc Bhd may be found in other Bursa-listed companies, to a certain degree. But this one is among the worst of the worst. There are countless suppliers who became Meda Inc Bhd's victims. My company is one of them. It's my responsibility to my company because I ignored others' advice. I am also the victim because if they don't pay the bills, I cannot collect my commission to pay my father's hospital bills. Nevertheless, I try to be fair and even-handed in my comments.

I try to ensure my posts have factual basis. Since I demand credibility from Kenneth Teoh and Meda Inc Bhd, I have to do my best to uphold the credibility of my blog.

Who are those VIP gentlemen who have dropped in to view this blog in recent days?

For the curiosity of my readers, let me try to give a brief.

Teoh Seng Aun (TeohSA)
TeohSA is Kenneth Teoh's older second brother. According to sources, TeohSA is actually the driving force behind the Meda Inc Bhd group and associate PLCs - EcoFirst (formerly Kumpulan Emas), and SEGi. Previously they also owned very profitable engineering company Salcon Bhd, and furniture maker SYF Resources. Sources working close with the group say TeohSA is actually the one with the brains and business acumen. TeohSA has substantial shares in all of the brothers' companies in the group.

TeohSA is known to be very loyal to his subordinates. To the extent that he would even tolerate incompetence and even a bit of dirty fingers. Hence, in his power group, his people would serve him loyally for many years. Included in this group are CEO OngBS, and the in-law of the Teoh brothers VT. Let me say clearly that I'm not implying outright that these gentlemen are dirty-fingered or incompetent. However, I have to mention that VT, who was formerly running South City Plaza, was transferred to Summit Complex Subang USJ last year under a big group re-shuffling, but left shortly later under "awkward" circumstances. VT then went to work for Berjaya Group, but it lasted barely a few months. He was then brought back into the Meda Inc Bhd group by TeohSA. Blood is thicker than water. (VT is not the one holding up the payments, so I will avoid telling his tales).

Shouting match
During this time, there was a bitter political struggle among the brothers, especially between Kenneth Teoh and TeohSA who saw his power eroded with the loss of some of his strong kaki. It was so bad, in fact, that both brothers could be heard shouting and quarreling with each other in their corporate HQ at Menara Summit. Even the lowest ranking driver knows about this. This happened early this year.

One outstanding point that was told to me is that those working under TeohSA enjoyed much better salaries and perks than those working under Kenneth Teoh.

Datuk Patrick Teoh
Their eldest brother Datuk Patrick Teoh was an accountant who moved around with MCA people a lot. (I might decide to tell you all about a new "project" that they got from their connection with an MCA government minister). He has major shares in SEGi, EcoFirst Consolidated and Meda Inc Bhd. He was recently forced to step down from his chairman role in EcoFirst because of the huge losses the company suffered under his charge (at that time known as Kumpulan Emas Bhd). As deputy chairman with substantial shares in EcoFirst, people say he is still in control while the new chairman Tan Sri Dr Syed Jalaludin Syed Salim and new managing director Datuk Hii (CEO of SEGi) are just friendly parties acting as "front men" for the Teohs.

Chief Executive Officer OngBS is considered part of the TeohSA group, and has been there for many years. My insiders tell me that OngBS is "generally well-liked, respected but not assertive enough" in the face of corporate management issues with the Teoh brothers, but he is a rational, reasonable and a fair-minded man and a competent CEO. Such a CEO would be an asset to a messy and disreputable company such as Meda Inc Bhd because the owners would tend to be more rash and irrational in the way they do things as they are now guided more by their ego than any good business sense. For example, it's not good business sense to buy a BMW car for family use when cashflow is tight and their supportive suppliers are left unpaid, which caused a breakdown in Summit Hotel service to customers. Still, Kenneth Teoh did that.

BHTan is director sales & marketing for the Meda Inc Bhd group, and probably involved in all the other companies in which the Teoh brothers are involved in. BHTan may also have dropped in to see this blog, though I cannot be 100% sure.

Kenneth Teoh has no loyalties
Contrast TeohSA with Kenneth Teoh, who holds group managing director position in Meda Inc Bhd and who controls the hotel business. the latter runs his show like a kedai mamak - everyone of his managers work according to Kenneth's Teoh's moods. He has no long-serving loyal executives or directors under him.

His most recent executive director RC lasted no more than 2 years. RC, I hear, was an aggressive, results-oriented and demanding executive. To his credit, Summit Hotel did improve in terms of service and quality during his time. He became Kenneth Teoh's right-hand man when he proved that he was able to dramatically raise Summit Hotel's revenue and profit margins and drastically reduce operating costs. Hotel staff enjoyed the highest service points payout ever in their history (2004/2005). Kenneth Teoh removed his previous executive director RChung and promoted RC to that position. Where RChung was respected by his hotel staff, RC was feared. RC was reckless as he went about executing his boss's orders and stepped on many toes. Furthermore, reducing hotel costs meant suppressing workers' salaries and this weakened the support structure in the hotel service.

Earlier this year, Kenneth Teoh initiated another messy purge and pitted different teams against each other amidst rumours and allegations. In the intense politicking, senior hotel and mid-management staff left in droves. RC then left the group recently.

In the Summit Hotel Subang USJ, Kenneth Teoh now manages it through the team comprising hotel financial controller MC and resident manager RS, where previously it was executive director RC and a general manager HTC. What a clever way to slash costs. Without meaning to cast any doubts here on those 2 gentlemen's capabilities, now it's like running an international restaurant with just the head waiter and accounts manager. I wonder if mama lembu can still deliver good milk now?

Coming soon: Semantan Suites

The same operating mode is also happening at Semantan Suites at Semantan Avenue, where they hired someone whose qualification and experience is considered by industry standards as not on par with the demands and requirements in managing such a property. It won't be this gentleman's fault if he fails. Semantan Suites may just become another run-down property after the company has made its money.

What next?

Now, it's up to Kenneth Teoh to decide how this blog goes. What he is going to do about the monies they owe to suppliers? If he pays us suppliers, I would probably lose interest in continuing with this blog. However, everybody knows his bad reputation in this matter is a life-long bad habit.

In the meantime, my friends and I are preparing a thousand emails a week to be sent out to draw top corporate leaders' and businesses' attention to this blog. I have to learn a few tricks from Jeff Ooi on how to achieve 300,000 blog hits a month. lol

The Bursa and SC will also be included. Our Deputy PM should be keen to read this blog, too, since he made that speech about good corporate governance. If he is instrumental in successfully prosecuting a Bursa-listed company, he will look good and gain credibility which will help him alot in stepping into the PM post in future. It shows us Bolehsians and foreign investors that he means business, that he walk the talk.

DPM says good governance is critical to Bolehland.
To read this news article, click on it.

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