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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Min RM27 Million Rip-Off From Tricubes Email Project?

Khairun Bin Zainal Mokhtar, CEO and biggest single shareholder of Tricubes Berhad (KLSE: TCUBES, stock-code 0062) disposed 20,000 shares and transferred 2,000.000 shares to his wife, Zalianna Binti Mohd Zaman Khan, according to the latest changes in shareholders received by Bursa Malaysia on 14 Feb 2011. Effectively Khairun’s direct shares reduced to 38,690,734 or 29.31%. As of now, there’s no filing if his wife has disposed any of the shares transferred to her after the stock skyrocket. If she did, then the whole 1Malaysia email proposal would be most interesting.

To award a RM50 million project to a GN3 financial troubled company was bad enough. To lie and spin the story that it would cost the government and hence the tax-payers absolutely “nothing” to enjoy the un-necessary email facility was an insult to the peoples’ intelligence. To declare now that each email will actually cost RM0.50 each (or less) after much uproar by the netizens is anadmission of daylight robbery endorsed by the government of the day.

After the controversial email project exploded, the stock jump more than400% from about RM0.06 a share to more than RM0.30 a share. The GN3-status Tricubes was targetting 5.4 million subscribers and regardless whether you wish to get the so-called regular confidential secured email or encrypted email, the senders (which in this case are government agencies such as Traffic Police, Inland Revenue Board etc) would still be charged about RM0.50 per email.

Tricubes Shares Stock Performance

If this is not the most brilliant proposal to rip off the tax-payers money, then Paris Hilton is still a virgin. To begin with, Tricubes doesn’t have to put a single penny upfront on this email project because the company was extremely lucky to have secured initial RM5.3 million funding (more to come?) from Malaysia Venture Capital Management Berhad (MAVCAP), a wholly owned Minister of Finance Inc. company which was allocated RM970 million (that’s public or tax-payers money dude).

How Tricubes arrived at the targetted 5.4 million email subscribers by year-end (2011) is still a mystery. According to TM’s 4Q-2010 financial results, the telekom company has a total of only 1.68 million Streamyx subscribers. However according to Internet World Stats, there’re 16.9 million internet users in June 2010, representing 64.6% of the population. So, could Tricubes’s ingenious email project attracts 30% of the internet users to subscribe to yet another email account, with another 8 months to go?

The major question is what if the response to the email subscription is poor, as reflected by the majority’s objection to such a wasteful project? Would Tricubes or rather the government agencies quietly (and secretly) create your email accounts as if you’ve agreed to subscribe to it and spam your mail-box with emails from government agencies and in the process pay Tricubes RM0.50 for each email? If you think about it, the whole theory of getting government agencies in sending you official emails is rather childish.

If you decline to subscribe the 1Malaysia MyEmail and the police summons can’t reach your mail-box (for example) does that means you don’t have to pay the summons because you can claim you’ve zero knowledge about it? Or it doesn’t matter because you still have summons in the police system database? If so, then the whole chain is back to the square one because the email from government agencies to you is as good as a normal Google, Yahoo or Hotmail email simply because it can’t compel you to act on it.

In other words, if the MyEmail project doesn’t make any differences, why should Tricubes be paid a whopping RM0.50 per email? Tricubes actually doesn’t care whether the Average-Joes agree to subscribe or not because it is dealing directly with its paymaster, the government agencies who are acting as the senders in this project. Once agreements (and there would be many) are signed between hundreds of government agencies and Tricubes, the shareholders of Tricubes can retire very rich indeed.

There’re other complexities which could hinder the response to the email subscription as well. It appears Malaysians would have to input their thumbprint to register – either at the National Registration Department offices or using aUSB biometric device, of which you can buy from Tricubes. Tricubes also claims the government can save up to a mind-boggling RM200 million over the next 10-years with the email project, a spectacular marketing talk indeed, if only they can quantify it satisfactory.

Gosh! Najib’s government must be real dumb not to think of such simple email method to save such a gigantic amount of money themselves. But were they? Maybe the government had figured that the best method to rip off public’s money without causing their anger was to perform payment transactions to their cronies silently at the back, just like how the government promised no toll hike but has actually paid a staggering RM2.05 billion (of public money) to highway concessionaires in compensation.

1Malaysia MyEmail Tricubes Rip Off Project

There’re many ways to skin a cat. By claiming the email project, Tricubes stock price has already make many people lots of money. Even if the project fails to take off, which is unlikely considering they’ve secured the RM5.3 milliom funding from MAVCAP, many Tricubes shareholders would have make the kills. If the project goes according to the plan, so much the better as the company can ensure guarantee profits from continous emails to be sent by various government agencies.

And there’re handsome profits to make from the monopolize sale of USB biometric device. Surely for such a project the agreement between government agencies and Tricubes would be lopsided (again?) in favor of Tricubes with commitment from government agencies on the minimum emails to be sent. You don’t have to be rocket scientist the targetted 5.4 million email subscribers by year-end was projected by government agencies.

Assuming there would be about 10 emails to be sent annually to 5.4 million mail-boxes, that would translate to a cool profit of RM27 million to Tricubes’s bottomline. Not a bad idea for a simple email project. Whoa, dont’ you think Tricubes’s current stock price is super-cheap *evil-grin*. It would be nice to see how the stock reacts if Najib’s administration makes a sudden (temporary) U-turn due to major uproars and objections since he’s preparing for a snap election. Either way, Tricubes wins one way or another. - financetwitter

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