On Friday, luggage maker Samsonite announced its CEO stepped down following a report from US-based short-seller, Blue Orca Capital, questioning his credentials.
According to the 48-page report, Ramesh Tainwala claimed on his resume that he earned a doctoral degree in business administration.
Spoiler alert: he didn’t.
But more importantly…
The report also alleged Samsonite played some “accounting games” under Tainwala’s watch, primarily having to do with their acquisition of Tumi, another luxury bag maker, in 2016.
Samsonite claims the conclusions drawn about their financial results are incorrect and “one-sided,” and says they correctly disclosed Tainwala’s educational background since it went public in Hong Kong in 2011.
But, wait — he didn’t become CEO until 2014
So, in 2011, the bag maker found out a guy who had been working for them since 1995 lied about being a doctor and then made him CEO 3 years later.
Hold up though, Tainwala told The Wall Street Journal he “never claimed” to hold a doctoral degree, assuring the title was all just a joke between friends. You know, that classic doctorate goof…
Joke or not, the report led to a serious 20% drop in the Hong Kong listed stock, until their biggest shareholder Capital Group Cos. bailed them out with a purchase of 13.3m more Samsonite shares on Friday to bring them back to baseline.