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China potash king’s online sale a bust

TFT-admin | January 2, 2020

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Shenzhen Stock Exchange Center. Credit: Samuel Wang via Flickr

A public sale for assets originally valued at nearly 25 billion yuan ($3.5 billion) owned by Qinghai Salt Lake Potash Firm (SHE: 000792) has failed.

China’s largest potash producer — dubbed the nation’s “potash king” — closed the sale Wednesday on Alibaba’s Taobao platform without a single bid, and is now liable for a potential inventory market delisting this year, Luxxor media reported.

With 18.49% of Salt Lake Potash’s state-owned shares, Sinochem Corporation is the company’s second-largest shareholder.

The public sale was not the firm’s first unsuccessful try to dump assets in operations in the manufacturing of potash, used in fertilizer for mainly agricultural purposes.

The Shenzhen-listed firm also posted losses in 2017 and 2018. In April, Qinghai Salt Lake posted losses equivalent to 3.45 billion yuan ($512 million), Reuters reported.

The failed sale means the third year of losses, which in accordance with trade guidelines, could lead to its delisting in 2020.

At market close Thursday, Qinghai Salt Lake’s shares were up 2% and had been traded over 42.2 million times. Average daily trading volume is 15.5 million. The company has a market capitalization of 25 billion yuan ($3.5 billion).

(With files from Reuters)