Monday, 14 December 2015


SUNEDISON - Share Price - 2015.
I bought SUNEDISON (Nasdaq SUNE) in June 2015, on the basis that it is the "largest green energy provider in America and leads in solar technology". The shares promptly fell 77%, leaving me with a meagre 23% with which to buy my family's Christmas feast.

I know that "Shares can go down as well as up" and "let the buyer beware" and I am not ordinarily a bad loser - but even with the benefit of 50 years business and accountancy experience, I cannot fathom why, as the world goes Green, SUNEDISON has suddenly, unexpectedly lost so much value as to be tipped by some journalists as heading rapidly for bankruptcy. The alleged reasons cited for the decline and fall were all in place a year or more ago - and yet the price held up and professional investors held on.

STOP PRESS 15 DEC 2015 - And here is another major Green company collapse; this one, ABENGOA, actually liquidated in Spain - foreseen a year ago by a schoolboy doing an economics essay - but not by S & P, the company directors or by auditors Deloitte until November 2015. Or, did they know and are they simply misleading investors. I wonder what "rewards" these corporate officers have gouged out? Or, is this the revenge of the oil and coal industries?

And now, ironically, as the SUNEDISON shares falter and die, we have THE PARIS ACCORD that portends the end of fossil fuel energy and the mercurial rise of green energy - including SUNEDISON'S solar technologies. But there is no bounce. No Wall Street rush to buy at the lowest price ever. So I looked further - specifically at the Directors of this benighted largely offshore group. I looked at the Auditors, who warned of no such collapse. I looked at the Lawyers, who gave no signals of impending doom. I looked at the brokers, bankers and senior managers - who knew and know nothing.

...And I started to think "ENRON". Another "complex" multinational mostly-offshore energy group that dazzled then bamboozled The Free Markets before imploding like an old tired wrinkled party balloon. From decades of hands-on audit experience, I have learned that in accountancy "complex" almost always means "bent" and usually involves two sets of "complex" books being kept to baffle the professionals - the auditors, lawyers, bankers, brokers and non-executive directors. So  ...keeping Enron in mind I have just checked what rewards this near-bankrupt, huge NYSE approved conglomerate gave to its CEO last year, as the balloon was sagging.

Ahmad Chatila -

As President and Chief Executive Officer at SUNEDISON INC, Ahmad Chatila made$7,707,079 in total compensation. Of this total $836,538 was received as a salary, $1,521,000 was received as a bonus, $0 was received in stock options, $5,343,000 was awarded as stock and $6,541 came from other types of compensation.

....And I found that the top man rewarded himself with a cool $7.7 million (onshore or offshore?), like winning The National Lottery seven times over - as his company was sinking into the swamp of unforeseen debt, dishonor and dismemberment - all of course too "complex" for skilled highly-paid auditors, lawyers, bankers, brokers, professional investors etc to be expected to see coming or to comprehend.

While I explain to my Christmas family, wearing finger gloves over a guttering candle, why we have turned off the heat and are celebrating with dried crusts and water; it would be reassuring to see a statement from the directors saying that SUNEDISON will recover, that its assets are actually good, that The Markets have got it wrong, that they, the directors, have got their eyes on the ball, that they are doing the job they are so well paid to do. Or failing the directors stepping up - maybe the auditors will say how valuable the company is. Or as a last resort the NYSE will give "America's largest green energy company" the green light.

Or ...miserably for shareholders - the CEO and the professionals will hand back their past few years premature rewards - to pay the liquidators fees.