May 14, 2009
The brand of Sanlu Group, the dairy company at the heart of China's tainted milk scandal last year, was sold at an auction Tuesday (May 12) for RMB7.3 million, court officials said.
An unidentified entrepreneur from south China won the bid at an auction in the Shijiazhuang Intermediate People's Court in northern Hebei province.
The auction started at RMB 7 million and drew three bids from only two bidders.
The Sanlu brand was worth RMB14.9 billion, but the milk scandal last year had ruined the company's reputation and decimated the brand's value. Before the milk scandal broke last September, Sanlu Group was China's leading seller of milk powder for 15 years, earning a revenue of RMB10 billion in 2007.
Sanlu on Tuesday also sold 51 percent stakes in three dairy companies for RMB22.8 million. The buyers' identities were not immediately known.
However, Sanlu failed to sell 51 percent stakes in another two dairy firms and withdrew 12 patent techniques from auction.
The bankruptcy trustee will announce plans to dispose of Sanlu's last remaining assets, which include a 51-percent stake in a third dairy firm in Hebei's Baoding city.
US$1 = RMB6.82202 (May 14)