Nine contractors hired by the Asian Broadcasting Network (M) Sdn Bhd (ABN) in 2014, have lodged a police report over payments not received for their services.
Jarjeet Gill, one of the contractors, said although a liquidator appointed by the courts following ABN’s bankruptcy case last year had revealed that ABN owed RM200 million to Bank Pembangunan Berhad, about 100 contractors owed RM130 million had not been paid.
“We want the authorities to investigate and find out where the money went to.”
Gill said since the court case, they had not received any word regarding their payments.
“It’s been four years and we have not received any payment and we have also not heard anything from the liquidator.”
In May last year, Sony (M) Sdn Bhd has obtained a court order to wind up Asian Broadcasting Network (M) Sdn Bhd (ABN) which, 5 years ago, had marketed itself as a serious rival to Astro in the pay-TV sector.
Joining Sony in the winding up petition were ARRIS Solution Inc, ARRIS Technology Inc, ARRIS Solution Malaysia Sdn Bhd, MaxNet Enterprise Sdn Bhd, Gentlelite Electrical Sdn Bhd, Pixel Softek Sdn Bhd and Janacon Trading Sdn Bhd.
Despite a RM450 million loan from Bank Pembangunan, ABN ran into problems, including a delay in salaries to staff and payments to installers and service contractors.
ABN’s digital cable TV service, marketed as ABNxcess, went live on June 8, 2013, boasting of providing speeds of up to 300 Mbps through its hybrid fibre-coaxial technology for its internet service and broadcasts of over 500 channels.
However the company only had 52 channels and offered a maximum Internet speed of 50Mbps at over RM350/month.
K K Eswaran is the largest shareholder of ABN through a 70% shareholding of ABN Media Group – ABN’s holding company.
The rest are owned by Admiral (Rtd) Mohd Anwar Mohd Nor via Mutu Pedoman Sdn Bhd (10%) and former home ministry secretary-general Mohamad Noor Abdul Rahim via Kurnia Mantap Sdn Bhd (20%).
ABN obtained a five-year digital cable broadcast license through Nilamas Corp Bhd (as ABN was known then). This license, which appears to be still valid, was activated in 2013.