In March, I traveled with my colleagues to the headquarters of Orient Paper (ONP - Get Report) as part of due diligence trip on several Chinese-based, U.S.-listed companies. Coming back from the trip, and after doing more research, I invested in Orient Paper and I wrote several favorable articles on the company, articulating the case for why I thought it was under-valued.
Earlier this week, a new "research" company called Muddy Waters published its first report in which it alleged that Orient Paper is a fraud and assigned a price target of less than $1. They suggested the company had misappropriated private placement funds from investors, cooked the books and prevented them from doing their studious due diligence on site. It's had a disastrous impact on the stock price of ONP. Earlier this week, before the report came out, the stock was trading at close to $9. Yesterday, at the height of panicked selling, the stock touched $4.11.
Rick Pearson (a fellow contributing writer on TheStreet) came out last night with a strong response to the Muddy Waters report.
I wanted to provide some additional comments, as I've spoken with the CFO, Winston Yen, several times in the last week, and one of my colleagues, Chris Lau, visited Orient Paper's headquarters yesterday in China to meet the CEO, Zhenyong Liu, the CFO and other members of the management team.
|The writer (left) with CEO Zhenyong Liu (center) and my colleauge Chris Lau.|