Vietnamese developer Novaland has bid farewell to two board members in the span of a month, one of whom tendered his resignation less than 20 days into the job.
Do Thi Phuong Lan and Nguyen Tran Dang Phuoc, both former executives of state-owned infrastructure group Gelex, had been brought in as part of an effort to bring independent oversight to the cash-strapped builder, according to a local media report.
Do stepped down from the board last Friday after a little over a month in the post, having served as a non-independent director at Novaland since her appointment on 4 May. Nguyen had been installed that same day and quit on 23 May, giving him a tenure of not quite three weeks.
Ho Chi Minh City-based Novaland, which won financial backing from US private equity firm Warburg Pincus but now faces a liquidity crunch amid Vietnam’s property downturn, also announced on 23 May that chief financial officer Nguyen Duc Dung had resigned from his duties at the company effective that same day.
Short and Sweet
In a Friday filing with the Singapore Exchange, Do expressed gratitude for her brief experience on Novaland’s board but did not elaborate on the circumstances of her departure.
“I’m thankful for the opportunity and the trust to serve the company during the most difficult period the best way that I could,” she said in the announcement. “The company is starting to normalise its operations and my direct involvement in execution will bring more total shareholder return.”
Do’s resignation takes effect on 22 June, after which Novaland will field a three-member board led by Nova Group chairman Bui Thanh Nhon.
Ex-CFO Nguyen had been with Novaland since 2018 before being promoted to his final title in December 2021. In March of this year, the financially stressed builder appointed Malaysian national Dennis Ng Teck Yeow as its new chief executive as part of a corporate restructuring, replacing Nguyen Ngoc Huyen.
It was a little over a year ago that Novaland revealed its sale of $250 million in convertible bonds to an entity controlled by Warburg Pincus and to the Singapore branch of investment bank Credit Suisse, with the cash infusion earmarked for development of a pipeline of projects.
In more recent times the Vietnamese group has repeatedly defaulted on debts, and Reuters reported last month that Novaland had delayed payments on a VND 1 trillion ($42.6 million) bond that matured on 18 May.
Inside Retail reported Monday that Nova Group had sold its restaurant and cafe business to a Singaporean firm through an arrangement with investment fund VinaCapital. Neither the name of the investor nor the value of the deal were disclosed.