Article in the Business Times (Singapore): "SIAS says it will take errant companies to court if need be".
SIAS president and chief executive David Gerald told The Business Times: "We will take legal action if the company doesn't want to come to the table, refuses to see reason and continues to do wrong."
.... the SIAS chief said he felt it was important to let SIAS members and retail investors know that they have the option of joining the association in a representative action - similar in vein to class-action suits filed in other jurisdictions - as not many investors are aware that such actions can be pursued here. "Investors must know they are protected," he said. "And I have been advised by our lawyers that SIAS can represent aggrieved shareholders. We can even set up a litigation fund, which minorities contribute to, even if they may not be involved in the legal action, to support the principle."
Mr Gerald took pains to stress, however, that while a representative action is an option for minorities, it should be their last one. "I sincerely hope we do not see the day when we launch a class-action suit against a company. I believe in resolving things in the boardroom, not the courtroom, in the interest of all parties."
Although I don't always agree with the actions of the SIAS, I fully support the above reasoning. It is very hard for minority shareholders to group together, while taking action individually doesn't make sense at all because of the costs involved (unless it involves a relatively large minority shareholder, like a fund).
SIAS and MSWG are ideal platforms to organize legal action for minority investors that have been disadvantaged.