Bronte Capital fund-manager John Hempton recently uncovered what appears to be a fraudulent company listed on the New York Stock Exchange. The company, Universal Travel Group (UTA), just held a conference call to persuade investors that it is not, in fact, a fraud. Hempton listened to the call and then did some additional research. He found that the travel site the company says produces 20% of its revenue is still selling tickets to the 2007 Formula 1 Grand Prix. Hempton is (or was) short the stock. Here’s his latest update:
travelling Through Time With Universal Travel Group
Universal Travel Group just held an investor conference call to answer investor questions about their business. They answered some and left many unanswered. However I just want to focus on one thing: the Chinese language websites.
They said the Chinese website running smoothly and that “we will try our best to maintain and upgrade in the future.”
That is good – because there are either a few “easter eggs” on the site or they are selling time-travel. I am going to show you how to book tickets for the 2007 Sinopec Formula 1 Grand Prix.
First you go to the www.cba-hotel.com site. Here is a screen shot.
I have used Google Translate to change this page to English.
At the top of the page are the key tabs – things you can do on this website – things like book hotels or tickets.
The sixth tab – in a fairly prominent place – is for F1 tickets. I pressed it – and translated to English. Here is a screenshot.
This is precisely as it seems – you can still buy tickets to the 2007 Sinopec Formula 1 Grand Prix. (I hope they let me bet on the race because I know the winner!)
This is from a site they maintain – and it is not deep in the site – it is a click on the main tabs on the front page. I made a Youtube video as well.
Still the company wishes to maintain the site in future – and 20 per cent of their business comes from these sites according to the conference call we just heard. So maybe we will soon be able to rent a really fast car to help us get to the race on time.
I report – you decide.
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