股东之间那些事儿之警惕“包藏祸心”的合作伙伴
As Between Shareholders -Beware APartner Who Harbors Evil Intentions
2017/2/17 11:15:47 点击率[103] 评论[0]
【法宝引证码】
    【学科类别】公司法
    【出处】邓永泉律师的博客
    【写作时间】2012年
    【中文关键字】股东;合作伙伴
    【全文】

      股权并购的失败率相当高,原因很多,但其中不乏被包藏祸心的现任股东欺骗的案例。痛定思痛,如果静心想一想,你就会发现,从一开始,对方就显然是包藏祸心了,只不过你自己没有意识到而已。本文就介绍几个常见的包藏祸心的迹象。
     
      Equity merger and acquisition transactions are characterized by a high failure rate on account of a variety of reasons, including fraudulence on the part of the current shareholder who harbors evil intentions. Reflecting back on the pains, you will find that the counterparty had harbored the evil intentions from the very outset, and it was only that you were not aware of it. This paper intends to outline the signs of several commonplace cases of harbored evil intentions.
     
      1.目标公司的法定代表人不是由实际控制人亲自担任。
     
      The person with actual control over the target company is not the legal representative of the target company.
     
      法定代表人是一个公司最重要的职位,可谓位高权重,掌握着公司的实际经营管理权。与此相对应的,如果公司出现问题,法定代表人也应承担与其权力相称的法律责任。正常情况下,一个公司的实际控制人都会亲自担任公司的法定代表人,以免大权旁落。反之,如果实际控制人不是亲自担任目标公司的法定代表人,放心大胆地让不相干的人担任公司的法定代表人,却又没有其他合理的理由,那么就很有可能,实际控制人根本不重视目标公司,甚至只把目标公司当作规避风险、攫取利益的工具公司而已,目标公司的生死存亡对于实际控制人来讲无关紧要,实际控制人可以随时抛弃目标公司,而不必担心承担法律责任,因为,他自己不担任法定代表人。对于投资人来讲,投资一个实际控制人准备随时跑路的公司,风险之大自不必说。
     
      Legal representative is the most important position in a company with prominent authority and the power over the business operations of the company. Accordingly, if the company were to run into any problem, the legal representative shall assume legal liabilities commensurate with such authority. Ordinarily, the person with actual control over a company would personally serve as the legal representative of the company, to prevent power from falling into the hands of others. On the other hand, if a person with actual control over a company is not the legal representative, and he/she instead comfortably allows an unrelated person to serve as the legal representative without other reasonable justification, it is likely that the person with actual control treat the target company lightly, even treating it merely as a vehicle for mitigating risks and earning profit, and the life or death of the target company does not matter much to the person with actual control who may abandon the target company at any time without much concern regarding legal liabilities as he/she is not the legal representative. Needless to say, an investor investing in such a company where the person with actual control is poised to exit at any time is exposed to substantial risks.
     
      2.目标公司有业务密切相关的关联公司,而这些关联公司在现任股东的绝对控制之下且轻轻松松地业绩良好。
     
      The target company has an affiliated company which works in closely related businesses, and the affiliated company is under the absolute control of the current shareholder and delivers good performance with seemingly no efforts.
     
      目标公司有业务密切相关的关联公司就意味着目标公司可能会与这些关联公司发生关联交易,而这些关联公司是在现任股东的绝对控制之下。现任股东的主要精力虽然放在了目标公司上,但这些关联公司的业绩却又非常好,这就意味着,现任股东可能是在通过关联交易,将目标公司的利润转移给这些关联公司。在这种情况下,目标公司可能只是现任股东的工具公司,这些关联公司才是现任股东的利益归集中心。对于投资人来讲,投资一个工具公司,很可能最后只是为别人做嫁衣。
     
      Where a target company has an affiliated company that works in closely related businesses, connected transactions are likely to occur between the target company and the affiliated company, and furthermore, the affiliated company is under the absolute control of the current shareholder. Although the current shareholder focuses its attention primarily on the target company, the affiliated company performs well, which implies that the current shareholder is transferring the profit of the target company to the affiliated company via connected transactions. In this case, the target company may just be a vehicle for the current shareholder, and it is the affiliated company that represents the center of the current shareholder's interests. An investor investing in such a vehicle may turn out to be making wedding dresses for others.
     
      3.目标公司注册资本金与其所从事的业务或经营规模很不相称,可银行贷款又很少,资金周转率也不高。
     
      The amount of the registered capital of the target company does not match the type or scale of its business, while the target company has few bank loans, and low capital turnover.
     
      一个公司的运营资金主要来源有三个。第一,股东缴付的注册资本金;第二,外部借款;第三,营业收入。如果一个公司的注册资本金很低,不足以支撑其正常经营,那只能靠外部借款或营业收入。外部借款主要有两个来源,一个是银行贷款,另一个就是企业间借款(即非法拆借)。如果这个公司的资金周转率很低,那么就不可能产生足够的营业收入来补足资金缺口。实际上,注册资本金很低,即使资金周转率再高,也不可能产生绝对值足够大的营业收入来补足资金缺口。显然,如果一个公司的注册资本金不够大,营业收入不够多,也没有很多的银行贷款,而这个公司又在正常运营,那么它只能靠关联公司的借款来补足资金缺口了。如果目标公司是这种情况,那就说明,对于现任股东来讲,目标公司可能只是现任股东的工具公司,这些关联公司才是现任股东的利益归集中心。目标公司与其关联公司之间可能存在不正常的关联交易。
     
      A company gets its working capital mainly from three sources. The first source is the registered capital subscribed by the shareholders; the second source is external borrowings, and the third source is operating revenue. If a company has a low capital base which is inadequate to support its normal operations, it could only rely on external borrowings or operating revenue. There are two main sources for external borrowing, namely bank loans and inter-company borrowings (i.e. illegal borrowing)。 If the company has a low capital turnover, it is impossible to generate enough operating revenue to make up for the funding shortfall. In fact, if the amount of registered capital is small, even with a high capital turnover, it is impossible to generate enough operating revenue, in absolute terms, to make up for the funding shortfall. It is all too obvious that if a going concern does not have a large amount of registered capital, operating revenue and bank loans, it could only rely on borrowings from affiliated companies to make up for its funding shortfall. If the target company is such a company, it shows that the target company is only a vehicle for the current shareholder, and it is the affiliated company that is the center of the current shareholder' interests, and there might be abnormal connected transactions between the target company and the said affiliated company.
     
      4.关键资产或关键员工不在目标公司。
     
      Key assets or key employees are not owned by the target company.
     
      如果目标公司经营所依赖的专利、商业秘密、商标、厂房、重要设备、车辆这些关键性资产的所有权都不在目标公司名下,而是属于其关联公司所有,关联公司只是许可或租借给目标公司使用;或者,如果对于目标公司经营至关重要的关键员工,无论是管理人员还是技术人员,都是与目标公司的关联公司签订劳动合同,然后再派遣到目标公司。那么,投资人就值得怀疑,目标公司可能只是现任股东的工具公司,现任股东有可能随时将其抛弃。
     
      If the key assets, such as patents, trade secrets, trademarks, buildings, major equipment, and vehicle, that the target company relies on in its business operations are not owned by the target company, and instead are owned by an affiliated company who only leases or licenses them for use by the target company, or if key employees, whether managerial or technical, pivotal to the operation of the target company are employed by an affiliated company and then seconded to the target company, it warrants suspicion the target company may be merely a vehicle for the current shareholder who might abandon it at any time.
     
      5.投资方案反映出现任股东变现意识较强。
     
      The investment plan reflects a strong desire by the current shareholder to cash out.
     
      一般来讲,如果现任股东引入投资人是要继续发展壮大目标公司,那么它就不会削弱自己对目标公司的控制力,也不会减少对目标公司的投入。因此,现任股东也就不大可能会主动要求向投资人转让一部分股权,更不大可能将目标公司的控制权拱手让给投资人。因此,如果现任股东一方面说要发展壮大目标公司,一方面又主动要求向投资人转让一部分甚至相当一部分股权,那么就值得投资人警惕了。
     
      Generally, if the current shareholder intends to build up the target company by attracting new investors, it would not reduce its own control over the target company, nor will it reduce its investment in the target company. Hence, in such a case, the current shareholder is unlikely to voluntarily offer to transfer a part of its equity to the investor, let alone let go of its control to the investor. In such a light, if the current shareholder claims to want to build up the target company while voluntarily offers to transfer part or even a substantial part of its equity to the investor, let the investor beware.
     
      6.现任股东保持对目标公司的控制权,又对分红做出很多限制。
     
      The current shareholder maintains its control over the target company while imposing many restrictions on dividend distribution.
     
      股东都愿意将投资收益变现,只不过变现的方式有两种,一种是分红,一种是从目标公司中套现。如果现任股东保持对目标公司的控制权,又对分红做出很多限制,那么就意味着现任股东可能是要利用自己对目标公司的控制权,通过关联交易,拆借、报销等手段从目标公司中套现。
     
      Shareholders are all alike in their desire to realize returns on its investment, and there are two ways to realize returns: one is by dividend distribution; the other is by cashing out the target company. If the current shareholder maintains its control over the target company while imposing many restrictions over dividend distribution, it may imply that the current shareholder wishes to leverage its control over the target company to cash out by connected transactions, borrowings, reimbursements or other means.
     
      7.目标公司或其现任股东、实际控制人曾经在多起案件中被诉,甚至拒不执行诉讼判决/仲裁裁决。
     
      The target company or its current shareholder or the person with actual control was sued in many proceedings, and they even refuse enforcement of judgments/arbitral awards.
     
      目标公司或其现任股东、实际控制人的涉诉情况很能说明其诚信状况以及处理合作关系的方式,投资人真的是有必要在迈出关键一步之前了解一下对方的涉诉情况,看看它是怎么对待别人的,也就知道它将来会怎么对待自己。
     
      The litigation history of the target company or its current shareholder or the person with actual control is ample evidence of its good faith standing and its approach to cooperation. It is truly necessary to know about the litigation history of the counterparty before taking the key step, to see how the counterparty treats others which will reflect how the counterparty will treat yourself in the future.
     
      俗话说,不怕没好事,就怕没好人,投资风险更多地源于包藏祸心的合作伙伴;祸心可以包藏,迹象无法掩饰;只要投资人时刻提高警惕,将来就不会后悔自己疏忽大意了。
     
      As the saying goes, we are not afraid of bad things, but we are afraid of bad people. Investment risks more often than not originated from evil-willed partners. Evil intentions can be concealed, but the signs of it could not be concealed. So long as an investor remains highly alert all the time, there will not be any later regret that it has erred by negligence.

    【作者简介】
    邓永泉,律师,大成律师事务所高级合伙人、北京仲裁委员会仲裁员、中欧仲裁委员会仲裁员,《商法》(China Business Law Journal)“法律精英100强”(China's Top100 Lawyers)。

    本网站文章仅代表作者个人观点,不代表本网站的观点与看法。
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