Friday, June 16, 2006

Halter's Companies Cheat Small Investors, Engage in Illegal Business Practices

Bill Halter has swept back into the state of his youth and leveraged $800,000 of his own money into a Democratic nomination for Lt. Governor. It is clear that Halter has made a lot of money, but how? Some have focused on the fact that one of the companies which Mr. Halter helped direct, Akami Technologies, made a small portion of their revenue from porn sites, including some advertising "the youngest teenage girls on the net", and online gambling. Some images were even being hosted on college servers. Once the Boston Globe blew that story wide open, Akami made a decision to "phase out" such operations and has since made a policy that they will not make such agreements in the future. Mr. Halter was on the Board of Directors for eighteen months before this decision was made, and continues on that board today.

As shocking as these facts are, they are not an isolated incident. It turns out that each of the companies Mr. Halter has directed have had serious finincial/ethical and or legal difficulties.

(click FRIDAY below and scroll down for rest of story, or if sent straight here just scroll down).

3 Comments:

Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

from reader DCNAW.....

Mr. Bill Halter currently serves on the board of four companies: Akamai Technology, WebMethods, Threshold Pharmaceuticals, and Xenogen. Late last month, he resigned from the board of Intermune Corporation amid Securities Exchange Commission and Federal Justice Department investigations into the companies marketing practices.

With the exception of Akamai, Mr. Halter’s business ventures have been financial disasters. During the time that Bill Halter has served on their Boards of Directors these companies have lost over one half billion dollars. Mr. Halter has stated in his television ads that he will use his business experience to help education for the children of Arkansas.

The only profitable company Mr. Halter has been involved with is Akamai, who has some business practices that are a great cause for concern, including business relations that profited from the promotion of internet gambling and teen pornography. Background information about three companies in which Mr. Halter has served on the Board of Directors are detailed below:

Akamai Technologies: Bill Halter joined the Akamai Technologies Board of Directors in August 2001. He has been a member of the Compensation Committee since March 2004. (Akamai Technologies, SEC Form DEF 14A, 04/11/05) Akamai Technologies “enables companies and government agencies to deliver Web content and applications (including ads, video, and other high-bandwidth content).

Gambling and Teen Pornography: Akamai Technologies has long-term business relationships with purveyors of teenage pornography and Internet-based offshore gambling operations. It was “using university networks to help deliver content for Web sites featuring teen pornography and potentially illegal offshore gambling.” In December 2002, “Akamai Technologies…apparently began to stop using server computers it…installed at universities and colleges to help deliver Web content from teenage porn and offshore gambling sites.” In 2002, company spokesman Jeff Young “would not comment on specific servers but reiterated…that Akamai is phasing out its relationships with three gambling sites and with porn sites, both of which he said represent less than 1 percent of Akamai’s annual revenue of more than $100 million.” (Knight Ridder Tribune Business News, 12/07/02, and National Journal’s Technology Daily, 12/04/02)

Cheating Small Investors: Akamai Technologies went public in 1999 at the height of the Internet ventures stock bubble. The company was forced to pay as much as one billion dollars as a result of a legal settlement on charges that they cheated small investors. The agreement, which was reached in June 2003, stipulated that the issuing companies, including Akamai Technologies, would pay nothing if an eventual payout from banks exceeds $1 billion. “In the unlikely event the banks’ payout falls below $1 billion, the companies would have to make up the difference.” (USA TODAY, 06/27/03)

Mr. Halter cashed in stocks to finance his political campaign. The $800,000 sale of Akamai stock in October of 2005 that Halter used to fund his candidacy is detailed below. Other buys and sales for the last two years can be found at: http://finance.yahoo.com/q/it?s=AKAM.

3-Oct-05

HALTER, WILLIAM A
Director 50,000 Direct Automatic Sale at $16 per share. $800,000

3-Oct-05

HALTER, WILLIAM A
Director 50,000 Direct Option Exercise at $8.13 per share. $406,500

Mr. Halter joined the InterMune Board of Directors in July 2002. He is a member of the Compensation Committee, and has been from July 2002 until his recent resignation. (InterMune, SEC Form DEF 14A, 04/20/05) Federal Investigation: The U.S. Justice Department, in 2004, opened an investigation into the marketing of Actimmune by InterMune. “Actimmune, which has generated hundreds of millions of dollars in sales, is approved only for treatment of two extremely rare childhood diseases. Yet ‘substantially all’ of the sales are for a fatal adult lung disease, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, according to the company’s…regulatory...” filings.

“Several former InterMune employees said in interviews…that the company actively promoted off-label use of Actimmune, which costs patients about $50,000 a year. Sales representatives were told to repeatedly call on lung doctors but to record their visits in the company’s computer system as relating to a different drug, they said. And bonuses were paid to representatives based on Actimmune sales, virtually all of which were for the off-label use, they said. One former sales representative, Joan Gallagher, sued the company in March [2004], saying it had fired her for refusing to go along with what she said were illegal marketing practices. InterMune…denied the allegations in the lawsuit.” (The New York Times, 11/11/04)

Multi-million class action lawsuit - InterMune, in May 2005, also “agreed to hand over $10.4 million to shareholders to settle a 2 year-old class-action lawsuit.

The litigation…charged the company and two former executives with securities fraud. Plaintiffs alleged that InterMune and its past CEO and chief financial officer had falsely projected sales forecasts two years ago for one of its products, Actimmune (interferon gamma-1b).”

“When the Brisbane, Calif.-based company revised its guidance downward, and admitted that it had overstated the number of patients using the drug, its stock lost a third of its value in a single trading day. That prompted the original lawsuit.” (BIOWORLD Today, 05/11/05)

Mr. Halter joined the webMethods Board of Directors in August 2003. He is a member of the Compensation Committee, and has been since August 2003. (webMethods, SEC Form DEF 14A, 07/22/05) Cheating Small Investors webMethods went public in February 2000. It was involved in the same legal settlement as Akamai that was discussed above for cheating small investors.” (USA TODAY, 06/27/03, and www.webmethods.com) Enron Accounting Practice: webMethods, in February 2005, restated “its 2004 financial results by about $5 million because of improper transactions and accounting activities.” According to the company, employees of a “subsidiary, WebMethods K.K., conducted improper licensing transactions, did not record certain expenses, borrowed money without authorization and misled webMethods managers about the unit’s financial results. The Securities and Exchange Commission…launched an informal investigation into the matter, the company said.” (The Washington Post, 02/04/05)

Each corporation in which Mr. Halter has served as a Director has an open policy of providing people of all sexual orientations with full medical benefits and an environment that fosters acceptance and “diversity” among employees.

11:35 AM, June 16, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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4:32 AM, February 20, 2010  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not sure where to post this but I wanted to ask if anyone has heard of National Clicks?

Can someone help me find it?

Overheard some co-workers talking about it all week but didn't have time to ask so I thought I would post it here to see if someone could help me out.

Seems to be getting alot of buzz right now.

Thanks

10:17 PM, March 31, 2010  

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