Company Quick10K Filing
Quick10K
Hollysys Automation Technologies
Closing Price ($) Shares Out (MM) Market Cap ($MM)
$18.91 60 $1,140
20-F 2018-06-30 Annual: 2018-06-30
20-F 2017-06-30 Annual: 2017-06-30
20-F 2016-06-30 Annual: 2016-06-30
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JAGX Jaguar Health 17
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AVOI Advanced Voice Recognition Systems 0
HOLI 2018-06-30
Part I
Item 1.Identity of Directors, Senior Management and Advisers
Item 2.Offer Statistics and Expected Timetable
Item 3.Key Information
Item 4.Information on The Company
Item 4A.Unresolved Staff Comments
Item 5.Operating and Financial Review and Prospects
Item 6.Directors, Senior Management and Employees
Item 7.Major Shareholders and Related Party Transactions
Item 8.Financial Information
Item 9.The Offer and Listing
Item 10.Additional Information
Item 11.Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk
Item 12.Description of Securities Other Than Equity Securities
Item 13.Defaults, Dividend Arrearages and Delinquencies
Item 14.Material Modifications To The Rights of Securities Holders and Use of Proceeds
Item 15.Controls and Procedures
Item 16A.Audit Committee Financial Expert
Item 16B.Code of Ethics
Item 16C.Principal Accountant Fees and Services
Item 16D.Exemptions From The Listing Standards for Audit Committees
Item 16E.Purchases of Equity Securities By The Issuer and Affiliated Purchasers
Item 16F.Change in Registrant's Certifying Accountant
Item 16G.Corporate Governance
Item 16H.Mine Safety Disclosure
Part III
Item 17.Financial Statements
Item 18.Financial Statements
Item 19.Exhibits
Note 1 -Organization and Business Background
Note 2 -Summary of Significant Accounting Policies
Note 3 -Inventories
Note 4 -Accounts Receivable
Note 5 -Costs and Estimated Earnings in Excess of Billings
Note 6 -Property, Plant and Equipment
Note 7 -Prepaid Land Leases
Note 8 -Intangible Assets, Net
Note 9 -Goodwill
Note 10 -Investments in Equity and Cost Investees
Note 11 -Warranty Liabilities
Note 12 -Short-Term Bank Loans
Note 13 -Long-Term Loans
Note 14 -Fair Value Measurement
Note 15 -Stockholders' Equity
Note 16 -Share-Based Compensation Expenses
Note 17 -Employee Benefits
Note 18 -Income Tax
Note 19 -Income per Share
Note 20 -Related Party Transactions
Note 21 -Commitments and Contingencies
Note 22 -Operating Leases As Lessor
Note 23 -Segment Reporting
Note 24 -Subsequent Events
Note 25 -Endorsement of Note Receivables
Note 26 -Condensed Financial Information of The Parent Company
EX-4.4 tv502490_ex4-4.htm
EX-8.1 tv502490_ex8-1.htm
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EX-12.2 tv502490_ex12-2.htm
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Hollysys Automation Technologies Earnings 2018-06-30

HOLI 20F Annual Report

Balance SheetIncome StatementCash Flow

20-F 1 tv502490_20f.htm 20-F

 

 

 

UNITED STATES

SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

WASHINGTON, D.C. 20549

 

FORM 20-F

(Mark One)

 

  ¨ REGISTRATION STATEMENT PURSUANT TO SECTION 12(b) OR (g) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

 

OR

 

  x ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

 

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018

 

OR

 

  ¨ TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

 

For the transition period from ___________ to ___________.

 

OR

 

  ¨ SHELL COMPANY REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

 

Date of event requiring this shell company report _________________________

 

Commission file number: 001-33602

 

HOLLYSYS AUTOMATION TECHNOLOGIES LTD.

(Exact name of Registrant as specified in its charter)

 

Not Applicable

(Translation of Registrant’s name into English)

 

British Virgin Islands

(Jurisdiction of incorporation or organization)

 

No. 2 Disheng Middle Road,

Beijing Economic-Technological Development Area,

Beijing, P. R. China 100176

(Address of principal executive offices)

 

Arden Xia, Tel: (86 10) 5898 1386, Email: xiachuan@hollysys.com

Address: No. 2 Disheng Middle Road, Beijing Economic-Technological Development Area, Beijing, P.R. China 100176

(Name, Telephone, E-mail and/or Facsimile number and Address of Company Contact Person)

 

Securities registered or to be registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act.

 

Title of each class   Name of each exchange on which registered

Ordinary Shares, $0.001 par value per share

 

  The NASDAQ Global Select Market
Preferred Share Purchase Rights   The NASDAQ Global Select Market

 

Securities registered or to be registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act.

 

None

 

(Title of Class)

 

Securities for which there is a reporting obligation pursuant to Section 15(d) of the Act.

 

None

 

Indicate the number of outstanding shares of each of the issuer’s classes of capital or ordinary shares as of the close of the period covered by the annual report (June 30, 2018): 60,342,099 ordinary shares.

 

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. xYes ¨No

 

If this report is an annual or transition report, indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. ¨Yes x No

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. xYes ¨ No

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files). x Yes ¨ No

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, or an emerging growth company. See definition of “large accelerated filer, "accelerated filer,” and "emerging growth company" in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.

 

Large accelerated filer x   Accelerated filer Non-accelerated filer
Emerging growth company       

 

If an emerging growth company that prepares its financial statements in accordance with U.S. GAAP, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards† provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act. ¨

 

† The term “new or revised financial accounting standard” refers to any update issued by the Financial Accounting Standards Board to its Accounting Standards Codification after April 5, 2012.

 

Indicate by check mark which basis of accounting the registrant has used to prepare the financial statements included in this filing:

 

U.S. GAAP x International Financial Reporting Standards as issued by the International Accounting Standards Board ¨ Other ¨

 

If “Other” has been checked in response to the previous question, indicate by check mark which financial statement item the registrant has elected to follow.

 

¨ Item 17                      ¨ Item 18

 

If this is an annual report, indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act).¨Yes       x No

 

 

 

 

 

 

HOLLYSYS AUTOMATION TECHNOLOGIES LTD.

 

ANNUAL REPORT ON FORM 20-F

FOR THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED JUNE 30, 2018

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

    Page
     
  PART I  
     
ITEM 1. IDENTITY OF DIRECTORS, SENIOR MANAGEMENT AND ADVISERS 5
     
ITEM 2. OFFER STATISTICS AND EXPECTED TIMETABLE 5
     
ITEM 3. KEY INFORMATION 5
     
ITEM 4. INFORMATION ON THE COMPANY 27
     
ITEM 4A. UNRESOLVED STAFF COMMENTS 43
     
ITEM 5. OPERATING AND FINANCIAL REVIEW AND PROSPECTS 43
     
ITEM 6. DIRECTORS, SENIOR MANAGEMENT AND EMPLOYEES 65
     
ITEM 7. MAJOR SHAREHOLDERS AND RELATED PARTY TRANSACTIONS 72
     
ITEM 8. FINANCIAL INFORMATION 75
     
ITEM 9. THE OFFER AND LISTING 76
     
ITEM 10. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION 77
     
ITEM 11. QUANTITATIVE AND QUALITATIVE DISCLOSURES ABOUT MARKET RISK 89
     
ITEM 12. DESCRIPTION OF SECURITIES OTHER THAN EQUITY SECURITIES 90
     
PART II
     
ITEM 13. DEFAULTS, DIVIDEND ARREARAGES AND DELINQUENCIES 90
     
ITEM 14. MATERIAL MODIFICATIONS TO THE RIGHTS OF SECURITIES HOLDERS AND USE OF PROCEEDS 90
     
ITEM 15. CONTROLS AND PROCEDURES 91
     
ITEM 16A. AUDIT COMMITTEE FINANCIAL EXPERT 92
     
ITEM 16B. CODE OF ETHICS 92
     
ITEM 16C. PRINCIPAL ACCOUNTANT FEES AND SERVICES 92
     
ITEM 16D. EXEMPTIONS FROM THE LISTING STANDARDS FOR AUDIT COMMITTEES 92
     
ITEM 16E. PURCHASES OF EQUITY SECURITIES BY THE ISSUER AND AFFILIATED PURCHASERS 93
     
ITEM 16F. CHANGE IN REGISTRANT’S CERTIFYING ACCOUNTANT 93
     
ITEM 16G. CORPORATE GOVERNANCE 93
     
ITEM 16H. MINE SAFETY DISCLOSURE 93
PART III
     
ITEM 17. FINANCIAL STATEMENTS 94
     
ITEM 18. FINANCIAL STATEMENTS 94
     
ITEM 19. EXHIBITS 94

 

 2 

 

 

USE OF CERTAIN DEFINED TERMS

 

Except as otherwise indicated by the context, references in this annual report to:

 

  · “Hollysys,” “we,” “us,” or “our,” and the “Company,” refer to the combined business of Hollysys Automation Technologies Ltd., a BVI company, and its consolidated subsidiaries, HI, HAP, HAIP, PTHAI, Bond Group, Concord Group, CSHK, CMDE, CECL, GTH, Clear Mind, World Hope, Helitong, Hollysys Group, Hangzhou Hollysys, Hangzhou System, Hollysys Intelligent, Beijing Hollysys, Hollysys Electronics, Xi’an Hollysys and Hollysys Investment;

 

  · “HI” refers to Hollysys International Pte. Limited, a Singapore company;

 

  · “HAP” refers to Hollysys (Asia Pacific) Pte. Limited, a Singapore company;

 

  · “HAIP” refers to Hollysys Automation India Private Limited, an India Company;

 

  · Bond Group” refers to a group of our subsidiaries, including Bond Corporation Pte. Ltd., a Singapore company (“BCPL”), Bond M&E Pte. Ltd., a Singapore Company (“BMSG”), Bond M&E Sdn. Bhd., a Malaysia company (“BMJB”), and Bond M&E (K.L.) Sdn. Bhd., a Malaysia company (“BMKL”);

 

  · “Concord Group” refers to a group of our subsidiaries, including Concord Corporation Pte. Ltd.  (“CCPL”), a Singapore company, and CCPL’s subsidiaries, Concord Electrical Pte. Ltd., a Singapore company (“CEPL”), Concord Electrical Sdn. Bhd., a Malaysia company (“CESB”), Concord Corporation Pte. Ltd, Dubai Branch (“CCPL Dubai”) Concord Electrical Contracting Ltd., a Qatar company(“CECL”), and Concord M Design and Engineering Company Ltd,  a Macau company(“CMDE”);

 

  · “CSHK” refers to Concord Solutions (HK) Limited, a Hong Kong company;

 

  · “PTHAI” refers to PT Hollysys Automation Indonesia, an Indonesian company
     
  · “GTH” refers to Gifted Time Holdings Limited, a BVI company;

 

  · “Clear Mind” refers to Clear Mind Limited, a BVI company;

 

  · “World Hope” refers to World Hope Enterprises Limited, a Hong Kong company;

 

  · “Helitong” refers Beijing Helitong Science & Technology Exploration Co., Ltd., a PRC company;

 

  · “Hollysys Group” refers to Hollysys Group Co., Ltd., formerly known as Beijing Hollysys Science & Technology Co., Ltd, a PRC company;

 

  · “Hangzhou Hollysys” refers to Hangzhou Hollysys Automation Co., Ltd., a PRC company;

 

  · “Hangzhou System” refers to Hangzhou Hollysys System Engineering Co., Ltd., a PRC company;
     
  · “Hollysys Industrial Software” refers to Beijing Hollysys Industrial Software Company Ltd., a PRC company;

 

  · “Hollysys Intelligent” refers to Beijing Hollysys Intelligent Technologies Co., Ltd., formerly named as Beijing Hollysys Automation & Drive Co., Ltd., a PRC company;

 

  · “Beijing Hollysys” refers to Beijing Hollysys Co., Ltd., a PRC company;

 

 3 

 

 

  · “Hollysys Electronics” refers to Beijing Hollysys Electronics Technology Co., Ltd., a PRC company;

 

  · “Xi’an Hollysys” refers to Xi’an Hollysys Co., Ltd, a PRC company;

 

  · “Hollysys Investment” refers to Hollysys (Beijing) Investment Co., Ltd., a PRC company;

 

  · “RMB” and “CNY” refer to Renminbi, the legal currency of China; “SGD” and “S$” refer to the Singapore dollar, the legal currency of Singapore; “US dollar,” “$” and “US$” refer to the legal currency of the United States; “MYR” refers to the Malaysian Ringgit, the legal currency of Malaysia; “AED” refers to the United Arab Emirates Dirham, the legal currency of United Arab Emirates; “HKD” refers to the Hong Kong dollar, the legal currency of Hong Kong; “MOP” refers to the Macau Pataca, the legal currency of Macau; “INR” refers to the Indian Rupee, the legal currency of India; and “QAR” refers to the Qatar Riyal, the legal currency of Qatar; “IDR” refers to Indonesia Rupiah, the legal currency of Indonesia.

 

  · “BVI” refers to the British Virgin Islands;

  

  · “China” and “PRC” refer to the People’s Republic of China;

 

  · “Hong Kong” and “Hong Kong SAR” refer to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of China;

 

  · “Macau” refers to the Macau Special Administrative Region of China;

 

  · “Exchange Act” refers to the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended; and

 

  · “Securities Act” refers to the Securities Act of 1933, as amended.

 

FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION

 

This annual report contains forward-looking statements and information relating to us that are based on the current beliefs, expectations, assumptions, estimates and projections of our management regarding our company and industry. These forward-looking statements are made under the "safe harbor" provision under Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. When used in this annual report, the words “may”, “will”, “anticipate”, “believe”, “estimate”, “expect”, “intend”, “plan” and similar expressions, as they relate to us or our management, are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These statements reflect management's current view of us concerning future events and are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions, including among many others: our potential inability to achieve similar growth in future periods as we did historically, a decrease in the availability of our raw materials, the emergence of additional competing technologies, changes in domestic and foreign laws, regulations and taxes, changes in economic conditions, uncertainties related to China’s legal system and economic, political and social events in China, the volatility of the securities markets, and other risks and uncertainties which are generally set forth under the heading, “Key information - Risk Factors” and elsewhere in this annual report.  Should any of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should the underlying assumptions about our business and the commercial markets in which we operate prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described as anticipated, estimated or expected in this annual report.

 

All forward-looking statements included herein attributable to us or other parties or any person acting on our behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by the cautionary statements contained or referred to in this section. Except to the extent required by applicable laws and regulations, we undertake no obligations to update these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this annual report or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

 

 4 

 

 

PART I

 

ITEM 1.IDENTITY OF DIRECTORS, SENIOR MANAGEMENT AND ADVISERS

 

Not applicable.

 

ITEM 2.OFFER STATISTICS AND EXPECTED TIMETABLE

 

Not applicable.

 

ITEM 3.KEY INFORMATION

 

A.Selected Consolidated Financial Data

 

The following table presents selected financial data regarding our business. It should be read in conjunction with our consolidated financial statements and related notes contained elsewhere in this annual report and the information under Item 5, “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects.”  The selected consolidated statement of comprehensive income data for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2016, 2017 and 2018 and the consolidated balance sheet data as of June 30, 2017 and 2018 have been derived from the audited consolidated financial statements of Hollysys that are included in this annual report beginning on page F-1. The selected statement of comprehensive income data for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2014 and 2015, and balance sheet data as of June 30, 2014, 2015 and 2016 have been derived from our audited financial statements that are not included in this annual report.

 

The audited consolidated financial statements for the years ended June 30, 2016, 2017 and 2018 are prepared and presented in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in the United States, or US GAAP.  The selected financial data information is only a summary and should be read in conjunction with the historical consolidated financial statements and related notes of Hollysys contained elsewhere herein.  The financial statements contained elsewhere fully represent our financial condition and operations; however, they are not indicative of our future performance.

 

Financial information in this report is reported in United States dollars, the reporting currency of the Company.

 

(In USD thousands, except share numbers and per share data)
   Years ended June 30, 
   2014   2015   2016   2017   2018 
Statement of Comprehensive Income Data                         
Revenue   521,332    531,379    544,325    431,943    540,768 
Operating income   98,407    130,107    120,583    60,270    120,244 
Income before income taxes   91,312    125,227    137,742    83,355    129,642 
Net income attributable to Hollysys   69,620    96,527    118,471    68,944    107,161 
Add: Share-based compensation expenses   2,986    2,492    3,860    464    1,207 
Amortization of intangible assets   5,413    4,454    818    581    600 
Acquisition-related consideration fair value adjustments   8,920    (166)   (1,745)   -    - 
Fair value adjustments of a bifurcated derivative   -    35    93    89    (75)
Non-GAAP net income attributable to Hollysys   86,939    103,342    121,497    70,078    108,893 
Weighted average ordinary shares:                         
Basic   57,926,333    58,612,596    59,170,050    60,189,004    60,434,019 
Diluted   58,426,642    60,134,203    60,611,456    61,011,510    61,248,565 
Earnings per share:                         
Basic   1.20    1.65    2.00    1.15    1.77 
Diluted   1.19    1.61    1.97    1.14    1.75 
Non-GAAP earnings per share:                         
Basic   1.50    1.76    2.05    1.16    1.80 
Diluted   1.49    1.72    2.02    1.16    1.78 
                          
Balance Sheet Data                         
Total current assets   729,893    806,640    827,310    865,356    1,000,898 
Total assets   926,695    983,686    1,004,156    1,058,254    1,210,128 
Total current liabilities   398,891    374,596    297,326    302,978    333,054 
Total liabilities   434,637    398,301    321,471    334,714    367,775 
                          
Net assets   492,058    585,385    682,685    723,540    842,052 
Non-controlling interests   3,583    6,285    8,529    21    301 
Stockholders’ equity   488,475    579,100    674,156    723,519    842,353 

 

 5 

 

 

Non-GAAP Measures

 

In evaluating our results, the non-GAAP measures of “Non-GAAP general and administrative expenses (“Non-GAAP G&A expenses”)”,“Non-GAAP cost of integrated contracts”, “Non-GAAP other income (expenses), net”, “Non-GAAP interest expenses”, “Non-GAAP net income attributable to Hollysys” and “Non-GAAP earnings per share” serve as additional indicators of our operating performance and not as a replacement for other measures in accordance with US GAAP. We believe these non-GAAP measures are useful to investors as they exclude: 1) share-based compensation expenses, 2) amortization of intangible assets, 3) acquisition-related consideration fair value adjustments and 4) fair value adjustments of a bifurcated derivative. All of above will not result in any cash inflows or outflows. We believe that using non-GAAP measures help our shareholders have a better understanding of our operating results and growth prospects. In addition, given the business nature of Hollysys, it has been a common practice for investors and analysts to use such non-GAAP measures to evaluate the Company. Specifically, the non-GAAP measures excluded the following items:

 

1) Share-based compensation expenses, which are calculated based on the number of shares or options granted and the fair value as of grant date.

 

2) Amortization of intangible assets, which is a non-cash expense relating primarily to acquisitions. At the time of an acquisition, the identifiable definite-lived intangible assets of the acquired company, such as customer relationships and order backlog, are valued and amortized over their estimated lives. Value is also assigned to the acquired indefinite-lived intangible assets, which comprise goodwill that are not subject to amortization.

 

3) Acquisition-related consideration fair value adjustments are accounting adjustments to report contingent share consideration liabilities at fair value and cash consideration at present value. These adjustments can be highly variable and are excluded from our assessment of performance because they are considered non-operational in nature and, therefore, are not indicative of current or future performance or ongoing costs of doing business.

 

4) Fair value adjustments of a bifurcated derivative are accounting adjustments to report the change of fair value of the feature bifurcated as a derivative from the underlying host instrument of a convertible bond, and accounted for as a liability at its fair value.

  

 6 

 

 

The following table provides a reconciliation of U.S. GAAP measures to the non-GAAP measures for the periods indicated: 

 

(In USD thousands, except share numbers and per share data)
   Years ended June 30, 
   2014   2015   2016   2017   2018 
Cost of integrated contracts   330,039    300,332    310,545    277,476    314,233 
Less: Amortization of intangible assets   5,413    4,454    818    581    600 
Non-GAAP cost of integrated contracts   324,626    295,878    309,727    276,895    314,833 
                          
G&A expenses   39,716    50,786    45,832    44,297    46,323 
Less: Share-based compensation expenses   2,986    2,492    3,860    464    1,207 
Non-GAAP G&A expenses   36,730    48,294    41,972    43,833    47,530 
                          
Other income  (expenses), net   (6,452)   2,601    4,061    1,722    4,349 
Add: Acquisition-related incentive share contingent consideration fair value adjustments   7,989    (368)   (1,745)   -    - 
Add: Fair value adjustments of a bifurcated derivative   -    35    93    89     (75)
Non-GAAP other income, net   1,537    2,268    2,409    1,811    4,274 
                          
Interest expenses   (1,998)   (1,821)   (1,404)   (938)   (692)
Add: Acquisition-related cash consideration adjustments   931    202    -    -    - 
Non-GAAP interest expenses   (1,067)   (1,619)   (1,404)   (938)   (692)
                          
Net income attributable to Hollysys   69,620    96,527    118,471    68,944    107,161 
Add: Share-based compensation expenses   2,986    2,492    3,860    464    1207 
Amortization of intangible assets   5,413    4,454    818    581    600 
Acquisition-related consideration fair value adjustments   8,920    (166)   (1,745)   -    - 
Fair value adjustments of a bifurcated derivative   -    35    93    89    (75)
Non-GAAP net income attributable to Hollysys   86,939    103,342    121,497    70,078    108,893 
Weighted average number of ordinary shares outstanding used in computation:                         
Basic   57,926,333    58,612,596    59,170,050    60,189,004    60,434,019 
Diluted   58,426,642    60,134,203    60,611,456    61,011,510    61,248,565 
Non-GAAP earnings per share:                         
Basic   1.50    1.76    2.05    1.16    1.80 
Diluted   1.49    1.72    2.02    1.16    1.78 

 

Exchange Rate Information

 

A majority of our business is conducted in China. We also operate in Singapore, Malaysia and several other jurisdictions in Asia and the Middle East through HAP, Concord Group, and Bond Group. We use US dollars as our reporting currency in our financial statements in this annual report. For entities whose functional currencies are not US dollars, assets and liabilities are translated into US dollars at the balance sheet date rates; equity accounts are translated at historical exchange rates and revenues, expenses, gains and losses are translated using the average rate for the year as published by the International Monetary Fund. Translation adjustments are reported as cumulative translation adjustments and are shown as a separate component of other comprehensive income in the consolidated statement of comprehensive income and changes in equity. Transactions and amounts in other parts of this annual report in foreign currencies recorded at the rates of exchange prevailing when the transactions occurred. With respect to amounts not recorded in our consolidated financial statements but included elsewhere in this annual report, all conversion between RMB and US dollars were made at a rate of RMB 6.5684 to $1.00, and all conversion between Singapore dollars and US dollars were made at a rate of SGD 1.3498 to $1.00, as set forth by the International Monetary Fund. We make no representation of any kind that RMB, Singapore dollar, US dollar or any other currency referenced in this report could have been, or could be, converted into the other stated currencies at the rates stated below, any particular rate, or at all. The Chinese government imposes control over its foreign-currency reserves through both direct regulation concerns conversion of RMB into foreign exchange and through restrictions on foreign trade. On September 7, 2018, the closing rate for using RMB and SGD to buy $1.00 was 6.8419 and 1.3781, respectively, as set forth by the International Monetary Fund.

 

 7 

 

 

The following table sets forth information concerning exchange rates between the RMB, Singapore dollars and the US dollar for the periods indicated, based on the exchange rates set forth in The Federal Reserve Board of Governors. These rates are provided solely for your convenience and are not necessarily the exchange rates that we used in this annual report on Form 20-F or will use in the preparation of our periodic reports or any other information to be provided to you.

 

   Exchange Rate between RMB and US$   Exchange Rate between SGD and US$ 
Period  Period End   Average   Low   High   Period End   Average   Low   High 
Calendar year 2013   6.0537    6.1478    6.0537    6.2438    1.2622    1.2511    1.2203    1.2831 
Calendar year 2014   6.2046    6.1620    6.0402    6.2591    1.3244    1.2665    1.2376    1.3244 
Calendar year 2015   6.4778    6.2827    6.1870    6.4896    1.4166    1.3746    1.3171    1.4337 
Calendar year 2016   6.9430    6.6400    6.4480    6.9580    1.4465    1.3800    1.3366    1.4522 
Calendar year 2017   6.0537    6.1478    6.0537    6.2438    1.2622    1.2511    1.2203    1.2831 
January 2018   6.2841    6.4233    6.2841    6.5263    1.3103    1.3214    1.3037    1.3355 
February 2018   6.3280    6.3183    6.2649    6.3471    1.3231    1.3200    1.3097    1.3310 
March 2018   6.2726    6.3174    6.2685    6.3565    1.3105    1.3146    1.3080    1.3245 
April 2018   6.3325    6.2967    6.2655    6.3340    1.3249    1.3160    1.3082    1.3290 
May 2018   6.4096    6.3701    6.3325    6.4175    1.3389    1.3392    1.3326    1.3468 
June 2018   6.6171    6.4651    6.3850    6.6235    1.3626    1.3480    1.3320    1.3673 
July 2018   6.8038    6.7164    6.6123    6.8102    1.3604    1.3630    1.3555    1.3728 
August 2018   6.8300    6.8453    6.8018    6.9330    1.3722    1.3687    1.3619    1.3804 
September 7, 2018   6.8419    6.8360    6.8270    6.8427    1.3781    1.3764    1.3752    1.3781 

 

B.Capitalization and Indebtedness

 

Not applicable.

 

C.Reasons for the Offer and Use of Proceeds

 

Not applicable.

 

D.Risk Factors

 

An investment in our capital stock involves a high degree of risk. You should carefully consider the risks described below, together with all of the other information included in this annual report, before making an investment decision. If any of the following risks actually occurs, our business, prospects, financial condition or results of operations could suffer. In that case, the trading price of our capital stock could decline, and you may lose all or part of your investment.

 

 8 

 

 

RISKS RELATED TO OUR BUSINESS

 

We commit substantial resources to new product and service development and acquisition opportunities in order to stay competitive and grow our business, and we may fail to offset the increased cost of such investment with a sufficient increase in net sales or margins.

 

The success of our business depends in great measure on our ability to keep pace with, or even lead, changes that occur in our industry and expand our product and service offerings. Traditionally, the automation and control systems business was relatively stable and slow moving. Successive generations of products offered only marginal improvements in terms of functionality and reliability. However, the emergence of computers, computer networks and electronic components as key elements of the systems that we design and build has accelerated the pace of change in our industry. Where there was formerly as much as a decade or more between successive generations of automation systems, the time between generations is now as little as two to three years. Technological advances and the introduction of new products, new designs and new manufacturing techniques by our competitors could adversely affect our business unless we are able to respond with similar advances. To remain competitive, we must continue to incur significant costs in product development, equipment and facilities and to make capital investments and seek complementary acquisitions. These costs may increase, resulting in greater fixed costs and operating expenses than we have incurred to date. As a result, we could be required to expend substantial funds for and commit significant resources to the following:

 

  · Research and development activities on existing and potential product solutions;
     
  · Additional engineering and other technical personnel;
     
  · Advanced design, production and test equipment;
     
  · Manufacturing services that meet changing customer needs;
     
  · Technological changes in manufacturing processes;
     
  · Expansion of manufacturing capacity; and
     
  · Acquiring technology through licensing and acquisitions.

 

Our future operating results will depend to a significant extent on our ability to continue providing new product and service solutions that compare favorably on the basis of time to market, cost and performance, with competing third-party suppliers and technologies.  However, we may develop new products and services that do not gain market acceptance, which would result in the failure to recover the significant costs for design and manufacturing for new product solutions or service development, thus adversely affecting operating results.

 

We may experience trade barriers in expanding to our targeted emerging markets and may be subject to tariffs and taxes that will result in significant additional costs for our business and products.

 

We may experience barriers to conducting business and trade in our planned expansion to emerging markets. These barriers may be in the form of delayed customs clearances, customs duties or tariffs. In addition, we may be subject to repatriation taxes levied upon the exchange of income from local currency into foreign currency, substantial taxes of profits, revenues, assets and payroll, as well as value-added tax. The markets into which we may expand may impose onerous and unpredictable duties, tariffs and taxes on our business and products. These barriers or expenses could have an adverse effect on our operations and financial results.

 

 9 

 

 

The ongoing trade war between China and the US and its potential escalation may have an adverse effect on our business operations and revenues.

 

Starting in April 2018, the U.S. imposed a 25% tariff on steel and a 10% tariff on aluminum imports from other countries. On July 6, the US imposed 25% tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese goods. President Trump further stated that the US would impose additional 10% tariffs on another US$200 billion worth of Chinese imports if China retaliates against the imposed US tariffs. China has instituted retaliatory tariffs on certain US goods, and have indicated a willingness to impose additional tariffs on U.S. products. Although we believe that the ongoing trade war so far has not had a material direct impact on our business, as we are not operating in the US and do not deliver products and services to customers in the US, the trade war, especially if and when it is escalated, may cause the depreciation of the RMB currency and global economic turmoil, which has the potential to adversely impact our supply chain for our products and, thus, to have a material adverse effect on our business and results of operations.

 

To the extent we acquire businesses and technologies from others, we will need to integrate these into our business, which if not successful will adversely impact our business and increase our financial expenses.

 

One important aspect of our expansion has been and will be the use of acquisitions, which may include acquiring an operating business or specific assets. Examples of this strategy have been the acquisitions of Concord Group in 2011 and Bond Group in 2013. As with any acquisition, we will have to integrate the business with our operations so as to achieve the value of our investment. Accommodating different business cultures, operating systems and product lines, as well as understanding and implementing different regulatory issues, often takes time and can result in unexpected expenses. Acquisitions are not always successful, resulting in unintended expenses and write-downs. Any failure to smoothly integrate acquired businesses and technologies may adversely affect our business operations.

 

As we expand our business outside of mainland China, we will encounter the increasing need for international certifications and compliance with the regulation of different governments, which if not obtained and complied with may adversely impact our business.

 

We are expanding our business outside of mainland China, including seeking business opportunities in Hong Kong SAR, Singapore, Malaysia, India, Indonesia, and the Middle East. For our marketing both in China and in other jurisdictions, we seek international certifications and have obtained certificates such as the European Safety Standard Certification Level 4. As we operate in jurisdictions other than China, we will have to comply with local laws, some of which relate to various safety and quality requirements for the kinds of products we provide. The failure to have any necessary or beneficial certifications and the failure to comply with local laws will have an adverse impact on our marketing and business, and may result in additional costs and expenses.

 

During our expansion into overseas market, a lack of qualified local engineers and the inability to relocate enough China’s experienced engineers to overseas could delay our international projects’ execution and lose potential business opportunities.

 

In our international business expansion to Southeast Asia, India and the Middle East, we may not be able to find adequate and qualified local engineers to bid and complete sizable rail transportation orders and industrial automation projects, and because of the visa problems, we may have difficulties to relocate adequate engineers from China to various foreign countries and have them stay there long enough to finish the projects, which could cause adverse impact on our international business expansion.

 

We do not have long-term purchase commitments from our customers, so our customers are free to choose products from our competitors, which increases our marketing expenses to continually find new clients and win new contracts.

 

We are engaged in the design, production and installation of automation and process control systems. As a result, our revenues result from numerous individual contracts that are nonrecurring in nature. Furthermore, customers may change or delay or terminate orders for products and services without notice for any reasons unrelated to us, including lack of market acceptance for the products to be produced by the process that our system was designed to control. As a result, in order to maintain and expand our business, we must expend increasing amounts on marketing to identify clients and win contracts so as to be able to replenish the orders in our pipeline on a continuous basis. Increased marketing expenses and the inability to continue with current contracts or win new sources of revenue could result in a decline in revenues and profitability.

 

 10 

 

 

Although we do not have a concentration of business with any customer at this time, our business has become more dependent on a few significant customers.

 

We have developed significant customer relationships with several local subway providers and railway authorities in respect of the high speed train system in China. We currently also have significant contracts with the MTR Corporation Ltd. of Hong Kong, Land Transport Authority of Singapore, and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. Qatar Branch. We expect that these relationships will continue to grow, and we will win more contracts with them over time. To the extent that these customer groups or specific customers with a group represent an increasing proportion of our business, we will become more dependent on them for our revenues and business growth. In that case, our cash flows also will become more dependent on those customers’ payment practices and overall public funding policies, including the lengthening of collection times under contracts that have been performed. Therefore, the loss of one or more of these customers or market groups as customers would have a material adverse impact on our revenues and our business operations and development.

 

We have a backlog of contracts, the execution of unfinished contracts in the backlog may be lengthened due to various external reasons, and the increase of backlog may not necessarily reflect our business expansion. 

 

To date, our backlog has been a reflection of our ability to sell our products and services and increase our business. This represents an amount of unrealized revenue to be earned from contracts secured by the Company. Backlog, however, can also reflect upon our inability to perform our contracts on a timely basis. Therefore, when evaluating our backlog, analysis should be made as to whether or not it is a reflection of an expanding business, successful marketing and increasing acceptance of our products and services in the marketplace or problems in our contract performance and acceptance.

 

A lack of adequate engineering resources could cause our business to have diminished profitability and lose potential business prospects.

 

Among the competitive advantages and key business advantages that we enjoy are the plentiful supply of engineering talent in China and the comparatively lower cost of our engineering staff compared to those of our Western and Japan-based competitors. Recently, however, our costs for these persons have been subject to increased wage pressures due to the economic growth of China and certain inflationary pressures and additional employment related taxation. If the available supply of engineers were to be absorbed by competing demands, or otherwise not as plentiful as we have experienced to date, then the costs of hiring, training and retaining capable engineers would likely increase. If we are unable to pass any additional costs through to our customers, this could result in a reduction in our profitability, and the inability to have qualified and trained persons could adversely affect our business prospects or could even cause a change in our business strategy.

 

Our products may contain design or manufacturing defects, which could result in reduced demand for our products or services, customer claims and uninsured liabilities.

 

Our products are very complex, integrated systems, often with elements designed specifically for the particular situation of a customer, which may have undetected design or manufacturing issues or defects until put into actual use. Also, we manufacture spare parts for maintenance and replacement purposes after completion of integrated solution contracts. While there have been no significant issues or defects identified so far, any issues or defects in the design, manufacture and spare parts we provide may result in returns, claims, delayed shipments to customers or reduced or cancelled customer orders and other forms of damages asserted against the Company. If these issues or defects occur, we will incur additional costs, and if they occur in large quantity or frequency, we may sustain a permanent increase in costs, a loss of business reputation and legal liability. Moreover, we are increasingly active in the conventional and nuclear power generation and railway control systems sectors. Each of these sectors poses a substantially higher risk of liability in the event of a system failure, than was present in the industrial process controls markets in which we traditionally compete.

 

We generally do not carry large amounts of insurance, and in the future we may not be able to obtain adequate insurance coverage. The typical practice of the industries with which we are involved is for the customers to obtain insurance to protect their own operational risks. As a practice, we do not carry insurance coverage to protect against the risks related to product failure. It is possible that customers could assert claims against us for any damages caused by a failure in one of our systems, and as a result, the failure of any of our designs, manufacture and installation of our products could result in a liability that would seriously impair our financial condition or even force us out of business.

 

 11 

 

 

Our failure to adequately protect our intellectual property rights may undermine our competitive position, and litigation to protect our intellectual property rights may be costly.

 

Our business is based on a number of proprietary products and systems, some of which are patented and others of which we protect as trade secrets. We strive to strengthen and differentiate our product portfolio by developing new and innovative products and product improvements. As a result, we believe that the protection of our intellectual property will become increasingly important to our business as the functionality of automation systems increases to meet customer demand and as we try to open new markets for our products.

 

Currently, we hold PRC utility patents that relate to various product configurations and product components and software copyrights and have pending PRC patent applications. We will continue to rely on a combination of patents, trade secrets, trademarks and copyrights to provide protection in this regard, but this protection may be inadequate.

 

Our pending or future patent applications may not be approved or, if allowed, they may not be of sufficient strength or scope. As a result, third parties may use the technologies and proprietary processes that we have developed and compete with us, which could negatively affect any competitive advantage we enjoy, dilute our brand and harm our operating results.

 

In addition, policing the unauthorized use of our proprietary technology can be difficult and expensive. Litigation may be necessary to enforce our intellectual property rights. Protection of intellectual property and proprietary rights in China may not be as effective as in other countries. Given the fact that the majority of our intellectual property rights are in China and under Chinese law, the relative unpredictability of China’s legal system and potential difficulties of enforcing a court judgment in China may result in an outcome that is unfavorable to us when we assert intellectual property ownership in a particular situation. Furthermore, any litigation may be costly and may divert management attention away from our business operations. An adverse determination in any lawsuit involving our intellectual property is likely to jeopardize our business prospects and reputation and result in additional expense for penalties, licensing and redesign. We have no insurance coverage against litigation costs so we would be forced to bear all litigation costs if we cannot recover them from other parties. All of the foregoing factors could harm our business and financial condition.

 

As we are going to sell more of our proprietarily developed products and systems to foreign countries, we may not continue to have the protection of our patents and software copyright in foreign countries for some of our proprietary products, which could negatively impact our competitive position and our business expansion in overseas.

 

Although the Company’s goodwill outstanding as of June 30, 2018 was assessed not impaired, it may be impaired in the future depending on the future market development and the outcome of the operations in Singapore, Malaysia and the Middle East.

 

The goodwill outstanding as of June 30, 2018 was mainly related to the acquisition of Concord Group in 2011 and Bond Group in 2013. Based on our quantitative assessment for Concord Group and qualitative assessment for Bond Group, the goodwill was not impaired as at June 30, 2018. However, there are uncertainties surrounding the amount and timing of future expected cash flows as they may be impacted by negative events such as a slowdown in the mechanical and electrical engineering sector, deteriorating economic conditions in the geographical areas Concord and Bond Group operates in, political, economic and social uncertainties in the Middle East and Southeast Asia, increasing competitive pressures and fewer than expected mechanical and electrical solution contracts awarded to Concord and Bond Group. These events can negatively impact demand for Concord and Bond Group’s services and result in actual future cash flows being less than forecasted or delays in the timing of when those cash flows are expected to be realized. Further, the timing of when actual future cash flows are received could differ from the Company’s estimates, which are based on historical trends and does not factor in unexpected delays in project commencement or execution.

 

 12 

 

 

RISKS RELATED TO THE INDUSTRY IN WHICH WE OPERATE 

 

The Company mainly operates in the industrial and manufacturing automation sectors, the high-speed rail, subway and nuclear power automation sectors; in some industry verticals within the industrial automation sector, we may experience the inconstant growth rate from time to time, which may present variation of business opportunities; the contracts for high-speed rail, subway and nuclear power are substantially larger which may result in a greater dependence on a particular customer or business sector, and could cause significant fluctuations in our revenues.

 

The principal focus of our business has been to provide Distributed Control Systems, Programmable Logic Controller and related industrial automation and control solution to industrial and manufacturing companies. Even though there are enormous opportunities in the industrial automation arena, some industry verticals may experience slower growth or decreased growth that will provide us with fewer opportunities and contract awards from the industry and manufacturing sectors. Both high-speed rail and nuclear power sectors have one or few customers and are closely related to the national development policies, and the contract size for these two sectors is usually much larger, and as a result, there could be severe fluctuation of these sectors’ growth, which may affect our business and revenues. 

 

Although China is committed to expanding its energy production with nuclear power and building a high speed railway network, both these industries have experienced various setbacks due to higher than expected accidents for various reasons several years ago. The future growth rate of these two sectors may not be as fast as the market previously expected but on a more sustainable and safer basis, thus we will, likely experience slower annual growth or possibly even a reduction in these sectors’ revenues.

 

International business recently has expands to Southeast Asia and the Middle East area. Projects awarded in these areas may be exposed to potential delay in construction progress due to political reasons.

 

To the extent that our business is more dependent on large contracts and contracts from a few customers, our revenues, cash flows and profits will be influenced by this type of contracting and the timely payment for our products and services.

 

As we develop our business with the entities responsible for building municipal subway systems and railroads, power plants and larger system contract customers, such as building retrofits, we will be entering into contracts for larger sized projects than in the past, which will be for significantly greater contract value. These contracts will require us to commit greater operating resources to a more limited number of customers and contract fulfillment. Therefore, our revenues, cash flows and profits will become increasingly dependent on our ability to perform these contracts and collect the payments due on a timely basis. Some of the entities ultimately responsible for the funding of infrastructure projects are governmental authorities or ministries, our contract requirements and collections will become subject to these entities being able to adequately budget and have the revenues to timely pay for our products and services. We expect a long collection period in some of our business. To some extent, we may become subject to delays and reductions in scope of project due to changes in the policies, objectives and budgeting of any of the public entities which control the projects on which we are contracting. We will also become increasingly subject to government contract requirements in the performance of contracts that are ultimately the responsibility of public bodies.

 

At this time, contracting with the entities that provide the subway and rail systems and power plants for which we provide control systems is similar to contracting with the customers we have sold to in the past. Therefore, our contracts are written on a similar basis as before, and we expect that we will be operating under these contracts and accounting for their revenues in a similar manner as before.

 

 13 

 

 

Many of our competitors have substantially greater resources than we do, allowing them to compete on an advantageous basis.

 

We operate in a very competitive environment with many major international and domestic companies, such as Honeywell, General Electric, ABB, Siemens, Emerson, Yokogawa and Hitachi. Many of our competitors are much better established and more experienced than we are, have substantially greater financial resources, operate in more international markets and are much more diversified than we are. As a result, they are in a stronger position to compete effectively with us. These large competitors are also in a better position than we are to weather any extended weaknesses in the market for automation and control systems. Other emerging companies or companies in related industries may also increase their participation in our market, which would add to the competitive pressures that we face.

 

A decrease in the rate of growth in China’s industrial activity and the Chinese economy in general may lead to a slower growth or decrease in our revenues because industrial companies in China are significant sources of revenues for us.

 

Industrial companies operating in China are significant sources of revenues for us. Our business benefited in the past from the rapid expansion of China’s industrial activity, which has created additional demand from existing companies and led to the formation of numerous additional companies that have need for our products and services. We have also benefited from the infrastructure projects of the different governmental authorities of China, such as power production and transportation systems. China’s industrial and infrastructure expansion has been fueled in large measure by international demand for the low-cost goods that China is able to produce due to labor advantages and other comparative advantages, such as governmental subsidies to offset research and development expenses and taxes and reduced land use/facilities costs for targeted industries. The failure of Chinese economy to sustain this rate of growth in the future and any reduction in the rate of China’s industrial growth or a shrinking of China’s industrial base could adversely affect our revenues. We may also be impacted as major infrastructure projects are completed. The resulting increase in competition for customers might also cause erosion of profit margins that we have been able to achieve historically.

 

Our efforts to operate in the international automation market may not prove successful, and we may expend capital resources without achieving value and needlessly divert management’s time and attention from our principal market.

 

We are penetrating international markets, emphasizing Southeast Asia, India, and the Middle East with the objective of diversifying our products, clients and places of operations and growing our overall business. Our expansion is likely to use substantial resources, including substantial amounts of capital and equity and deploy meaningful amounts of management time and attention. Our products and our overall approach to the automation and controls system business may not be accepted in other markets to the extent needed to make that effort profitable. In addition, the additional demands on our management from these activities may detract from our efforts in the domestic Chinese market and market of surrounding countries, causing the operating results in our principal markets to be adversely affected.

 

We depend heavily on key personnel, and loss of key employees and senior management could harm our business.

 

Our future business and results of operations depend in significant part upon the continued contributions of our key technical and senior management personnel. The Company also depends in significant part upon its ability to attract and retain additional qualified senior executives and management, technical, marketing and sales and support personnel for our operations. If we lose a key employee, if a key employee fails to perform in his or her current position or if we are not able to attract and retain skilled employees as needed, our business could suffer. Turnover in our senior management could significantly deplete institutional knowledge held by our existing senior management team and impair our operations.

 

In addition, if any of these key personnel joins a competitor or forms a competing company, we may lose some of our customers. We have entered into confidentiality and non-competition agreements with key personnel. However, if any disputes arise between these key personnel and us, it is not clear, in light of uncertainties associated with the PRC legal system, what the court decisions will be and the extent to which these court decisions could be enforced in China, where all of these key personnel reside and hold some of their assets.

 

 14 

 

 

Our control systems are used in infrastructure projects such as subway systems, surface railways and nuclear plants; to the extent that our systems do not perform as designed, we could be found responsible for the damage resulting from that failure.

 

We face potential responsibility for the failure of our control systems in performing the various functions for which they are designed and the damages resulting from any such problem. To the extent that we contract to provide control systems in larger scale projects, the level of damages for which we may be held responsible is likely to increase. To the extent that any of our installed control systems do not perform as designed for their intended purposes, and we are held responsible for the consequences of those performance failures and resulting damages, there may be an adverse impact on our business, business reputation, revenues and profits. We do believe our control systems have so far performed as designed, and there are no claims asserted against us based on any significant, non-performance event. Notwithstanding our record, no assurance can be given that no claims will be sought in the future based on the design and performance of our control systems.

 

We may be exposed to potential risks relating to our internal controls over financial reporting and our ability to have those controls positively attested to by our independent auditors.

 

As directed by Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, the SEC adopted rules requiring public companies to include a report of management on the Company’s internal controls over financial reporting in their annual reports and the independent registered public accounting firm auditing a company’s financial statements to attest to and report on the operating effectiveness of such company’s internal controls. No material weakness has been identified as of June 30, 2018. In the event we identify material weaknesses in our internal controls that we cannot remediate in a timely manner or we are unable to receive a positive attestation from our independent auditors with respect to our internal controls, investors and others may lose confidence in the reliability of our financial statements.

 

Our auditor, like other independent registered public accounting firms operating in China, is not permitted to be subject to inspection by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, and as such, investors may be deprived of the benefits of such inspection.

 

Our independent registered public accounting firm that issues the audit reports included in our annual report filed with the SEC, as an auditor of companies that are traded publicly in the United States and a firm registered with the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States), or the PCAOB, is required by the laws of the United States to undergo regular inspections by the PCAOB to assess its compliance with the laws of the United States and professional standards. Because our auditor is located in China, a jurisdiction where the PCAOB is currently unable to conduct inspections without the approval of the PRC authorities like other independent registered public accounting firms operating in China, is currently not inspected by the PCAOB. In May 2013, PCAOB announced that it had entered into a Memorandum of Understanding on Enforcement Cooperation with the China Securities Regulatory Commission (“CSRC”) and the Ministry of Finance, which establishes a cooperative framework between the parties for the production and exchange of audit documents relevant to investigations undertaken by PCAOB, the CSRC, or the Ministry of Finance in China and the Department of the Treasury in the United States respectively. PCAOB continues to be in discussions with the CSRC and the Ministry of Finance to permit joint inspections in the PRC of audit firms that are registered with PCAOB and audit Chinese companies that trade on U.S. exchanges.

 

Inspections of other firms that the PCAOB has conducted have identified deficiencies in those firms’ audit procedures and quality control procedures, which may be addressed as part of the inspection process to improve future audit quality. The inability of the PCAOB to conduct inspections of independent registered public accounting firms operating in China makes it more difficult to evaluate the effectiveness of our auditor’s audit procedures or quality control procedures. As a result, investors may be deprived of the benefits of the PCAOB inspections. 

 

 15 

 

 

Proceedings instituted by the SEC against five PRC-based accounting firms, including our independent registered public accounting firm, could result in financial statements being determined to be not in compliance with the requirements of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.

 

In December 2012, the SEC instituted proceedings under Rule 102(e)(1)(iii) of the SEC’s Rules of Practice against five PRC-based accounting firms, including our independent registered public accounting firm, alleging that these firms had violated U.S. securities laws and the SEC’s rules and regulations there under by failing to provide to the SEC the firms’ work papers related to their audits of certain PRC-based companies that are publicly traded in the United States. Rule 102(e)(1)(iii) grants to the SEC the authority to deny to any person, temporarily or permanently, the ability to practice before the SEC who is found by the SEC, after notice and opportunity for a hearing, to have willfully violated, or willfully aided and abetted the violation of, any such laws or rules and regulations. On January 22, 2014, an initial administrative law decision was issued, sanctioning four of these accounting firms and suspending them from practicing before the SEC for a period of six months. The sanction will not take effect until there is an order of effectiveness issued by the SEC. In February 2014, four of these PRC-based accounting firms filed a petition for review of the initial decision.  In February 2015, each of these four accounting firms agreed to a censure and to pay fine to the SEC to settle the dispute with the SEC. The settlement stays the current proceeding for four years, during which time the firms are required to follow detailed procedures to seek to provide the SEC with access to Chinese firms' audit documents via the CSRC. If a firm does not follow the procedures, the SEC would impose penalties such as suspensions, or commence a new, expedited administrative proceeding against the non-compliant firm or it could restart the administrative proceeding against all four firms.

 

In the event that the SEC restarts the administrative proceedings, depending upon the final outcome, listed companies in the United States with major PRC operations may find it difficult or impossible to retain auditors in respect of their operations in the PRC, which could result in financial statements being determined to not be in compliance with the requirements of the Exchange Act, including possible delisting. Moreover, any negative news about the proceedings against these audit firms may cause investor uncertainty regarding China-based, United States-listed companies and the market price of our ordinary shares may be adversely affected.

 

If our independent registered public accounting firm were denied, temporarily or permanently, the ability to practice before the SEC, and we are unable to find in a timely manner another registered public accounting firm which can audit and issue a report on our financial statements, our financial statements could be determined to not be in compliance with the requirements for financial statements of public companies with a class of securities registered under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, or the Exchange Act. Such a determination could ultimately lead to the SEC’s revocation of the registration of our ordinary shares under the Exchange Act, which would cause the immediate delisting of our ordinary shares from the NASDAQ Global Select Market, and the effective termination of the trading market for our ordinary shares in the United States, which would likely have a significant adverse effect on the value of our ordinary shares.

 

RISKS RELATED TO DOING BUSINESS IN CHINA 

 

Changes in the economic and political policies of the PRC government could have a material and adverse effect on our business and operations.

 

We conduct a substantial portion of our business in China. Accordingly, our results of operations, financial condition and prospects are significantly dependent on economic and political developments in China. China’s economy differs from the economies of developed countries in many aspects, including the level of development, growth rate and degree of government control over foreign exchange and allocation of resources. While China’s economy has experienced significant growth in the past 30 years, the growth has been uneven across different regions and periods and among various economic sectors in China. We cannot assure you that China’s economy will continue to grow, or that if there is growth, such growth will be steady and uniform, or that if there is a slowdown, such slowdown will not have a negative effect on its business and results of operations.

 

The PRC government exercises significant control over China. Accordingly, our results of operations, financial condition and prospects are significantly dependent on economic and political developments in China. Certain measures adopted by the PRC government may restrict loans to certain industries, such as changes in the statutory deposit reserve ratio and lending guidelines for commercial banks by the People’s Bank of China, or PBOC. These current and future government actions could materially affect our liquidity, access to capital, and ability to operate our business.

 

 16 

 

 

The global financial markets experienced significant disruptions in 2008 and the United States, Europe and other economies went into recession. Since 2012, growth of the Chinese economy has slowed down. The PRC government has implemented various measures to encourage economic growth and guide the allocation of resources. Some of these measures may benefit the overall PRC economy but may also have a negative effect on us. Our financial condition and results of operation could be materially and adversely affected by government control over capital investments or changes in tax regulations that are applicable to us. In addition, any stimulus measures designed to boost the Chinese economy, may contribute to higher inflation, which could adversely affect our results of operations and financial condition. See “Risks Relating to Doing Business in China - Future inflation in China may inhibit our ability to conduct business in China.”

 

If the CSRC, or another PRC regulatory agency, determines that CSRC approval of our initial merger was required or if other regulatory obligations are imposed upon us, we may incur sanctions, penalties or additional costs which would damage our business.

 

On August 8, 2006, six PRC regulatory agencies, including the CSRC, promulgated the Regulations on Mergers and Acquisitions of Domestic Companies by Foreign Investors, or the M&A Regulations, which became effective on September 8, 2006. Under these regulations, the prior approval of the CSRC is required for the overseas listing of offshore special purpose vehicles that are directly or indirectly controlled by PRC companies or individuals and used for the purpose of listing PRC onshore interests on an overseas stock exchange.

 

On September 20, 2007, we completed a merger transaction with Chardan North China Acquisition Corporation, or Chardan, which resulted in our current ownership and corporate structure. We believe that CSRC approval was not required for our merger transaction or for the listing and trading of our securities on a trading market because we are not an offshore special purpose vehicle that is directly or indirectly controlled by PRC companies or individuals. Although the M&A Regulations provide specific requirements and procedures, there are still many ambiguities in the meaning of many provisions. Further regulations are anticipated in the future, but until there has been clarification either by pronouncements, regulation or practice, there is some uncertainty in the scope of the regulations and the regulators have wide latitude in the enforcement of the regulations and approval of transactions. If the CSRC or another PRC regulatory agency subsequently determines that the CSRC’s approval was required, we may face sanctions by the CSRC or another PRC regulatory agency. If this happens, these regulatory agencies may impose fines and penalties on our operations in China, limit our operating privileges in China, restrict or prohibit payment or remittance of dividends paid by Hollysys, or take other actions that could damage our business, financial condition, results of operations, reputation and prospects, as well as the trading price of our securities.

  

Fluctuations in exchange rates could harm our business and the value of our securities.

 

The value of our securities will be indirectly affected by the foreign exchange rate between US dollars and those currencies in which our sales may be denominated. Because a large portion of our earnings and cash assets are denominated in RMB, SGD and MYR, and our financial results are reported in US dollars, fluctuations in the exchange rate between the US dollar and RMB, SGD and MYR will affect our balance sheet and our earnings per share as stated in US dollars. In addition, appreciation or depreciation in the value of the RMB, SGD and MYR relative to the US dollar would affect our financial results reported in US dollar terms without giving effect to any underlying change in our business or results of operations. Fluctuations in the exchange rate will also affect the relative value of any dividend we issue that will be exchanged into US dollars as well as earnings from, and the value of, any US dollar-denominated investments we make in the future. 

 

As our main functional currency, the RMB has no longer been pegged to the US dollar since July 2005. Although the People’s Bank of China regularly intervenes in the foreign exchange market to prevent significant short-term fluctuations in the exchange rate, the RMB may appreciate or depreciate significantly in value against the US dollar in the medium to long term. Moreover, it is possible that in the future PRC authorities may lift restrictions on fluctuations in the RMB exchange rate and lessen intervention in the foreign exchange market.

 

Very limited hedging transactions are available in China to reduce our exposure to exchange rate fluctuations. To date, we have not entered into any hedging transactions. While we may enter into hedging transactions in the future, the availability and effectiveness of these transactions may be limited, and we may not be able to successfully hedge our exposure at all. In addition, our foreign currency exchange losses may be magnified by PRC exchange control regulations that restrict our ability to convert RMB into foreign currencies.

 

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Exchange controls that exist in the PRC may limit our ability to utilize our cash flow effectively. 

 

We are subject to the PRC’s rules and regulations on currency conversion. In the PRC, the State Administration for Foreign Exchange, or SAFE, regulates the conversion of the RMB into foreign currencies. Currently, foreign investment enterprises, or FIEs, are required to apply to the SAFE for “Foreign Exchange Registration Certificates for FIEs.” We believe Helitong is an FIE. With such registration certificates, which need to be renewed annually, FIEs are allowed to open foreign currency accounts including a “basic account” and “capital account.” Currency conversion within the scope of the “basic account,” such as remittance of foreign currencies for payment of dividends, can be effected without requiring the approval of the SAFE. However, conversion of currency in the “capital account,” including capital items such as direct investment, loans and securities, still require approval of the SAFE. We cannot assure you that the PRC regulatory authorities will not impose further restrictions on the convertibility of the RMB. Any future restrictions on currency exchanges may limit our ability to use our cash flow for the distribution of dividends to our shareholders or to fund operations it may have outside of the PRC.

 

Future inflation in China may inhibit our ability to conduct business in China.

 

In recent years, the Chinese economy has experienced periods of rapid expansion and highly fluctuating rates of inflation. During the past ten years, the rate of inflation in China has been as high as 5.9% and as low as -0.7%. These factors have led to the adoption by the Chinese government, from time to time, of various corrective measures designed to restrict the availability of credit or regulate growth and contain inflation. High inflation may in the future cause the Chinese government to impose controls on credit and/or prices, or to take other action, which could inhibit economic activity in China, and thereby harm the market for our products and our company.

 

PRC regulations relating to the establishment of offshore special purpose companies by PRC residents may subject our PRC resident beneficial owners or our company to liabilities or penalties, limit our ability to contribute capital to our PRC subsidiaries, limit the ability of our PRC subsidiaries to increase their registered capital or distribute profits to us, or otherwise materially and adversely affect us.

 

On July 14, 2014, the SAFE issued the Circular Relating to Foreign Exchange Administration of Offshore Investment, Financing and Roundtrip Investment by Domestic Residents through Special Purpose Vehicles, or Circular 37. Circular 37 repeals and replaces the Notice Concerning Foreign Exchange Controls on Domestic Residents’ Financing and Roundtrip Investment through Offshore Special Purpose Vehicles, or Circular 75. Under Circular 37, PRC residents are required to register with the SAFE or its local branches prior to establishing, or acquiring control of, an offshore company for the purpose of investment or financing that offshore company with equity interests in, or assets of, a PRC enterprise or with offshore equity interest or assets legally held by such PRC resident. In addition, PRC residents are required to amend their registrations with the SAFE and its local branches to reflect any material changes with respect to such PRC resident’s investment in such offshore company, including changes to basic information of such PRC resident, increase or decrease in capital, share transfer or share swap, merger or division. In the event that a PRC shareholder fails to make the required registration or update the previously filed registration, the PRC subsidiaries of that offshore special purpose vehicle may be prohibited from distributing their profits and the proceeds from any reduction in capital, share transfer or liquidation to their offshore parent company, and the offshore parent company may also be prohibited from contributing additional capital into its PRC subsidiaries. Furthermore, failure to comply with the various foreign exchange registration requirements described above could result in liability under the PRC laws for evasion of applicable foreign exchange restrictions.

 

We do not have control over our beneficial owners and cannot assure you that all of our PRC resident beneficial owners will comply with SAFE regulations. The failure of our beneficial owners who are PRC residents to comply with these SAFE registrations may subject such beneficial owners or our PRC subsidiaries to fines and legal sanctions. Furthermore, since Circular 37 was recently promulgated and it is unclear how this regulation, and any future regulation concerning offshore or cross-border transactions, will be interpreted, amended and implemented by the relevant PRC government authorities, we cannot predict how these regulations will affect our business operations or future strategy. Failure to register or comply with relevant requirements may also limit our ability to contribute additional capital to our PRC subsidiaries and limit our PRC subsidiaries’ ability to distribute dividends to our company. These risks may have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

 

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Because Chinese law governs many of our material agreements, we may not be able to enforce our rights within the PRC or elsewhere, which could result in a significant loss of business, business opportunities or capital.

 

Chinese law governs many of our material agreements, some of which may be with Chinese governmental agencies. We cannot assure you that we will be able to enforce any of our material agreements or that remedies will be available outside of the PRC. The system of laws and the enforcement of existing laws and contracts in the PRC may not be as certain in implementation and interpretation as in the United States. The Chinese judiciary is relatively inexperienced in enforcing corporate and commercial law, leading to a higher than usual degree of uncertainty as to the outcome of any litigation. The inability to enforce or obtain a remedy under any of our future agreements could result in a significant loss of business, business opportunities or capital.

 

If any dividend is declared in the future and paid in a foreign currency, you may be taxed on a larger amount in US dollars than the US dollar amount that you will actually ultimately receive.

 

If you are a U.S. holder, you will be taxed on the US dollar value of your dividends at the time you receive them, even if you actually receive a smaller amount of US dollars when the payment is in fact converted into US dollars. Specifically, if a dividend is declared and paid in a foreign currency, the amount of the dividend distribution that you must include in your income as a U.S. holder will be the US dollar value of the payments made in the foreign currency, determined at the conversion rate of the foreign currency to the US dollar on the date the dividend distribution is includible in your income, regardless of whether the payment is in fact converted into US dollars. Thus, if the value of the foreign currency decreases before you actually convert the currency into US dollars, you will be taxed on a larger amount in US dollars than the US dollar amount that you will actually ultimately receive.

 

Legal regulations may limit our ability to make dividend payments to our shareholders.

 

We are a holding company in the BVI. We generally rely on our subsidiaries to provide us with cash flow and to meet our other obligations. For PRC subsidiaries, relevant PRC laws and regulations permit payment of dividends by a PRC subsidiary only from accumulated distributable profits, if any, determined in accordance with PRC accounting standards and regulations, and only after setting aside at least 10% of its current year profits (up to an aggregate amount equal to half of its registered capital). The PRC tax authorities may initiate changes in determining income of our PRC subsidiaries that would further limit their ability to pay dividends and make other distributions to us. It is therefore possible that our PRC subsidiaries will not have any distributable profit to pay us, even if they are profitable under U.S. GAAP.

 

The ability, as well as the decision, to declare dividends will also be influenced by the withholding taxes imposed on payments by companies in one jurisdiction to a company in another jurisdiction. For example, there is a 10% withholding tax imposed on a PRC company paying dividends to a company located in the BVI. This will reduce the value of any potential dividend to the ultimate shareholders, and therefore the board may determine that it would be a more prudent use of funds to reinvest funds that could be available for dividends into the business or acquire other businesses and assets.

 

Based on the articles of association and the Companies Act in Singapore and Malaysia, no dividend shall be payable except out of the profits of the companies. There is no limit to the number of dividend payable as long as there are sufficient profits. There is no withholding tax imposed on a Singapore and Malaysia company paying dividends to a company located outside of Singapore and Malaysia upon remittance.

 

Our business could be severely harmed if the Chinese government changes its policies, laws, regulations, tax structure or its current interpretations of its laws, rules and regulations relating to our operations in China.

 

Our results of operations, financial state of affairs and future growth are, to a significant degree, subject to China’s economic, political and legal development and related uncertainties. Our operations and results could be materially affected by a number of factors, including, but not limited to

 

  · Changes in policies by the Chinese government resulting in changes in laws or regulations or the interpretation of laws or regulations,
  · Changes in taxation,

 

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  · Changes in employment restrictions,
  · Restrictions on imports and sources of supply,
  · Import duties, and
  · Currency revaluation.

 

Over the past several years, the Chinese government has pursued economic reform policies including the encouragement of private economic activities and greater economic decentralization. If the Chinese government does not continue to pursue its present policies that encourage foreign investment and operations in China, or if these policies are either not successful or are significantly altered, then our business could be harmed. The China government also exercises significant control over China’s economic growth through the allocation of resources, controlling payment of foreign currency-denominated obligations, setting monetary policy and providing preferential treatment to particular industries or companies. Continued efforts to increase tax revenues could result in increased taxation expenses being incurred by us. Economic development may be limited as well by the imposition of austerity measures intended to reduce inflation, the inadequate development of infrastructure and the potential unavailability of adequate power and water supplies, transportation and communications. In addition, the Chinese government continues to play a significant role in regulating industry by imposing industrial policies.

 

The Chinese laws and regulations which govern our current business operations are sometimes vague and uncertain and may be changed in a way that hurts our business.

 

China’s legal system is a civil law system based on written statutes, in which system decided legal cases have less value as precedents, unlike the common law system prevalent in the United States or the BVI. There are substantial uncertainties regarding the interpretation and application of Chinese laws and regulations, including but not limited to the laws and regulations governing our business, or the enforcement and performance of our arrangements with customers in the event of the imposition of statutory liens, death, bankruptcy and criminal proceedings. The Chinese government has been developing a comprehensive system of commercial laws, and considerable progress has been made in introducing laws and regulations dealing with economic matters such as foreign investment, corporate organization and governance, commerce, taxation and trade. However, because these laws and regulations are relatively new, and because of the limited volume of published cases and judicial interpretation and their lack of force as precedents, interpretation and enforcement of these laws and regulations involve significant uncertainties. New laws and regulations that affect existing and proposed future businesses may also be applied retroactively. We are considered an FIE under Chinese laws, and as a result, we must comply with Chinese laws and regulations. We cannot predict what effect the interpretation of existing or new Chinese laws or regulations may have on our business. If the relevant authorities find us to be in violation of Chinese laws or regulations, they would have broad discretion in dealing with such a violation, including, without limitation: levying fines; revoking our business and other licenses; requiring that we restructure our ownership or operations; and requiring that we discontinue any portion or all of our business.

 

The implementation of PRC employment law is likely to result in increased labor costs in China, which may affect our business and profitability.

 

The Labor Contract Law, which became effective on January 1, 2008, imposes on employers’ requirements to enter into fixed-term employment contracts, and effects the recruitment of temporary employees and dismissal of employees. In addition, under the Regulations on Paid Annual Leave for Employees, which also became effective on January 1, 2008, employees who have worked continuously for more than one year are entitled to paid vacation time ranging from 5 to 15 days, depending on the length of the employee’s service. Employees who waive such vacation entitlements at the request of the employer will be compensated for three times their normal daily salaries for each vacation day so waived. On July 1, 2011, China promulgated the Social Insurance Law to unify pervious scattered laws relating to social insurance matters. The law clarifies that the social insurance system in China includes pension insurance, medical insurance, unemployment insurance, work-related injury insurance and maternity insurance, all of which are mandatory benefits for employees of companies operating in China. Employers are required to make contributions under these insurance schemes, which although local in rates, are overall expected to increase employee expense over time. There is no assurance that disputes, work stoppages or strikes will not arise in the future over these and other matters. Increases in the labor costs or future disputes with our employees could damage our business, financial condition or operating results.

 

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The Security Review Rules may make it more difficult for us to make future acquisitions or dispositions of our business operations or assets in China.

 

The Security Review Rules, effective as of September 1, 2011, provides that when deciding whether a specific merger or acquisition of a domestic enterprise by foreign investors is subject to the national security review by MOFCOM, the principle of substance-over-form should be applied and foreign investors are prohibited from circumventing the national security review requirement by structuring transactions through proxies, trusts, indirect investments, leases, loans, control through contractual arrangements or offshore transactions. If the business of any target company that we plan to acquire falls within the scope subject to national security review, we may not be able to successfully acquire such company by equity or asset acquisition, capital increase or even through any contractual arrangement.

 

Under the EIT Law, we may be classified as a “resident enterprise” of China. Such classification will likely result in unfavorable tax consequences to us and our non-PRC shareholders.

 

On March 16, 2007, the National People’s Congress of China passed a new Enterprise Income Tax Law, or the EIT Law, and on November 28, 2007, the State Council of China passed its implementing rules, which took effect on January 1, 2008. Under the EIT Law, an enterprise established outside of China with “de facto management bodies” within China is considered a “resident enterprise,” meaning that it can be treated in a manner similar to a Chinese enterprise for enterprise income tax purposes. The implementing rules of the EIT Law define de facto management as “substantial and overall management and control over the production and operations, personnel, accounting, and properties” of the enterprise.

 

On April 22, 2009, the State Administration of Taxation issued the Notice Concerning Relevant Issues Regarding Cognizance of Chinese Investment Controlled Enterprises Incorporated Offshore as Resident Enterprises pursuant to Criteria of de facto Management Bodies, or the Notice, further interpreting the application of the EIT Law and its implementation non-Chinese enterprise or group controlled offshore entities. Pursuant to the Notice, an enterprise incorporated in an offshore jurisdiction and controlled by a Chinese enterprise or group will be classified as a “non-domestically incorporated resident enterprise” if (i) its senior management in charge of daily operations reside or perform their duties mainly in China; (ii) its financial or personnel decisions are made or approved by bodies or persons in China; (iii) its substantial assets and properties, accounting books, corporate chops, board and shareholder minutes are kept in China; and (iv) at least half of its directors with voting rights or senior management often resident in China. A resident enterprise would be subject to an enterprise income tax rate of 25% on its worldwide income and must pay a withholding tax at a rate of 10% when paying dividends to its non-PRC shareholders. However, it remains unclear as to whether the Notice is applicable to an offshore enterprise incorporated by a Chinese natural person. Nor are detailed measures on imposition of tax from non-domestically incorporated resident enterprises are available. Therefore, it is unclear how tax authorities will determine tax residency based on the facts of each case.

 

We may be deemed to be a resident enterprise by Chinese tax authorities. If the PRC tax authorities determine that we are a “resident enterprise” for PRC enterprise income tax purposes, a number of unfavorable PRC tax consequences could follow. First, we may be subject to the enterprise income tax at a rate of 25% on our worldwide taxable income as well as PRC enterprise income tax reporting obligations. In our case, this would mean that income such as interest on financing proceeds and non-China source income would be subject to PRC enterprise income tax at a rate of 25%. Second, although under the EIT Law and its implementing rules dividends paid to us from our PRC subsidiaries would qualify as “tax-exempt income,” we cannot guarantee that such dividends will not be subject to a 10% withholding tax, as the PRC foreign exchange control authorities, which enforce the withholding tax, have not yet issued guidance with respect to the processing of outbound remittances to entities that are treated as resident enterprises for PRC enterprise income tax purposes. Finally, it is possible that future guidance issued with respect to the new “resident enterprise” classification could result in a situation in which a 10% withholding tax is imposed on dividends we pay to our non-PRC shareholders and with respect to gains derived by our non-PRC stockholders from transferring our shares.

 

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Enhanced scrutiny over acquisition transactions by the PRC tax authorities may have a negative impact on potential acquisitions we may pursue in the future.

 

In connection with the EIT Law, the Ministry of Finance and the SAT jointly issued a SAT Circular 59 in April 2009, and the SAT issued a SAT Circular 698 in December 2009. Both SAT Circular 59 and Circular 698 became effective retroactively on January 1, 2008, and a Public Notice 7 in replacement of some of the existing rules in Circular 698, which became effective in February 2015.

 

According to SAT Circular 698, where a non-resident enterprise transfers the equity interests of a PRC “resident enterprise” indirectly by disposition of the equity interests of an overseas holding company, the non-resident enterprise, being the transferor, may be subject to PRC enterprise income tax, if the indirect transfer is considered to be an abusive use of company structure without reasonable commercial purposes. As a result, gains derived from such Indirect Transfer may be subject to PRC withholding tax at a rate of up to 10%. In addition, the PRC “resident enterprise” is supposed to provide necessary assistance to support the enforcement of SAT Circular 698.

 

On February 3, 2015, the SAT issued a Public Notice Regarding Certain Corporate Income Tax Matters on Indirect Transfer of Properties by Non-Tax Resident Enterprises, or Public Notice 7. Public Notice 7 has introduced a new tax regime that is significantly different from that under Circular 698. Public Notice 7 extends its tax jurisdiction to not only indirect transfers set forth under Circular 698 but also transactions involving transfer of other taxable assets, through the offshore transfer of a foreign intermediate holding company. Public Notice 7 also brings challenges to both the foreign transferor and transferee (or other person who is obligated to pay for the transfer) of the taxable assets. Where a non-tax resident enterprise conducts an “indirect transfer” by transferring the taxable assets indirectly by disposing of the equity interests of an overseas holding company, the non-tax resident enterprise being the transferor, or the transferee, or the PRC entity which directly owned the taxable assets may report to the relevant tax authority such indirect transfer. Using a “substance over form” principle, the PRC tax authority may re-characterize such indirect transfer as a direct transfer of the equity interests in the PRC tax resident enterprise and other properties in China. As a result, gains derived from such indirect transfer may be subject to PRC enterprise income tax, and the transferee or other person who is obligated to pay for the transfer is obligated to withhold the applicable taxes, currently at a rate of up to 10% for the transfer of equity interests in a PRC resident enterprise. Nevertheless, Circular 7 has introduced safe harbors for internal group restructurings and the purchase and sale of equity through a public securities market.

 

On October 17, 2017, the State Administration of Tax issued the Announcement of the State Administration of Taxation on Issues Concerning the Withholding of Non-resident Enterprise Income Tax at Source, or SAT Bulletin 37, which came into effect on December 1, 2017 and concurrently abolished Circular 698. The SAT Bulletin 37 further clarifies the practice and procedure of the withholding of non-tax resident enterprise income tax. Pursuant to Circular 7 and SAT Bulletin 37, both the transferor and the transferee may be subject to penalties under PRC tax laws if the transferee fails to withhold the taxes and the transferor fails to pay the taxes.

 

We face uncertainties on the reporting and consequences on private equity financing transactions, share exchange or other transactions involving the transfer of shares in our company by investors that are non-PRC resident enterprises, or sale or purchase of shares in other non-PRC resident companies or other taxable assets by us. Our company and other non-resident enterprises in our group may be subject to filing obligations or being taxed if our company and other non-resident enterprises in our group are transferors in such transactions, and may be subject to withholding obligations if our company and other non-resident enterprises in our group are transferees in such transactions, under Public Notice 7 and/or SAT Bulletin 37. For the transfer of shares in our company by investors that are non-PRC resident enterprises, our PRC subsidiaries may be requested to assist in the filing under Public Notice 7 and/or SAT Bulletin 37. As a result, we may be required to expend valuable resources to comply with Public Notice 7 and/or SAT Bulletin 37 or to request the relevant transferors from whom we purchase taxable assets to comply with these circulars, or to establish that our company and other non-resident enterprises in our group should not be taxed under these rules and notice, which may have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and results of operations.

 

The PRC tax authorities have the discretion under Public Notice 7 and/or SAT Bulletin 37 to make adjustments to the taxable capital gains based on the difference between the fair value of the taxable assets transferred and the cost of investment. If the PRC tax authorities make adjustments to the taxable income of the transactions under Public Notice 7 and/or SAT Bulletin 37, our income tax costs associated with such potential acquisitions will be increased, which may have an adverse effect on our financial condition and results of operations.

 

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We may be exposed to liabilities under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and Chinese anti-corruption laws, and any determination that we violated these laws could have a material adverse effect on our business.

 

We are subject to the Foreign Corrupt Practice Act, or FCPA, and other laws that prohibit improper payments or offers of payments to foreign governments and their officials and political parties by U.S. persons and issuers as defined by the statute, for the purpose of obtaining or retaining business. We have operations, agreements with third parties, and make most of our sales in China. The PRC also strictly prohibits bribery of government officials. Our activities in China create the risk of unauthorized payments or offers of payments by the employees, consultants, sales agents, or distributors of our Company, even though they may not always be subject to our control. It is our policy to implement safeguards to discourage these practices by our employees. However, our existing safeguards and any future improvements may prove to be less than effective, and the employees, consultants, sales agents, or distributors of our Company may engage in conduct for which we might be held responsible. Violations of the FCPA or Chinese anti-corruption laws may result in severe criminal or civil sanctions, and we may be subject to other liabilities, which could negatively affect our business, operating results and financial condition. In addition, the U.S. government may seek to hold our Company liable for successor liability FCPA violations committed by companies in which we invest or that we acquire.

 

If we become directly subject to the recent scrutiny, criticism and negative publicity involving U.S.-listed Chinese companies, we may have to expend significant resources to investigate and resolve the matter which could harm our business operations, stock price and reputation and could result in a loss of your investment in our stock, especially if such matter cannot be addressed and resolved favorably.

 

Recently, U.S. public companies that have substantially all of their operations in China, particularly companies like us which have completed so-called reverse merger transactions, have been the subject of intense scrutiny, criticism and negative publicity by investors, financial commentators and regulatory agencies, such as the SEC. Much of the scrutiny, criticism and negative publicity has centered on financial and accounting irregularities and mistakes, a lack of effective internal controls over financial accounting, inadequate corporate governance policies or a lack of adherence thereto and, in many cases, allegations of fraud. As a result of the scrutiny, criticism and negative publicity, the publicly traded stock of many U.S. listed Chinese companies has sharply decreased in value and, in some cases, has become virtually worthless. Many of these companies are now subject to shareholder lawsuits and SEC enforcement actions and are conducting internal and external investigations into the allegations. It is not clear what effect this sector-wide scrutiny, criticism and negative publicity will have on our Company, our business and our stock price. If we become the subject of any unfavorable allegations, whether such allegations are proven to be true or untrue, we will have to expend significant resources to investigate such allegations and/or defend our company. This situation will be costly and time consuming and distract our management from growing our company.

 

The disclosures in our reports and other filings with the SEC and our other public pronouncements are not subject to the scrutiny of any regulatory bodies in the PRC. Accordingly, our public disclosure should be reviewed in light of the fact that no governmental agency that is located in China where substantially all of our operations and business are located have conducted any due diligence on our operations or reviewed or cleared any of our disclosure.

 

We are regulated by the SEC and our reports and other filings with the SEC are subject to SEC review in accordance with the rules and regulations promulgated by the SEC under the Securities Act and the Exchange Act. Unlike public reporting companies whose operations are located primarily in the United States, however, substantially most of our operations are located in China. Since substantially all of our operations and business takes place in China, it may be more difficult for the staff of the SEC to overcome the geographic and cultural obstacles that are present when reviewing our disclosure. These same obstacles are not present for similar companies whose operations or business take place entirely or primarily in the United States. Furthermore, our SEC reports and other disclosure and public pronouncements are not subject to the review or scrutiny of any PRC regulatory authority. For example, the disclosure in our SEC reports and other filings are not subject to the review of the China Securities Regulatory Commission, a PRC regulator that is tasked with oversight of the capital markets in China. Accordingly, you should review our SEC reports, filings and our other public pronouncements with the understanding that no local regulator has done any due diligence on our company and with the understanding that none of our SEC reports, other filings or any of our other public pronouncements has been reviewed or otherwise been scrutinized by any local regulator.

 

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RISKS RELATED TO OUR SHARES 

 

The market price of our ordinary shares is volatile, leading to the possibility of its value being depressed at a time when you want to sell your holdings.

 

The market price of our ordinary shares is volatile, and this volatility may continue. Numerous factors, many of which are beyond our control, may cause the market price of our ordinary shares to fluctuate significantly. These factors include:

 

  · our earnings releases, actual or anticipated changes in our earnings, fluctuations in our operating results or our failure to meet the expectations of financial market analysts and investors;
     
  · changes in financial estimates by us or by any securities analysts who might cover our stock;
     
  · speculation about our business in the press or the investment community;
     
  · significant developments relating to our relationships with our customers or suppliers;
     
  · stock market price and volume fluctuations of other publicly traded companies and, in particular, those that are in the same industry as we are;
     
  · customer demand for our products;
     
  · investor perceptions of the automation and control industry in general and our company in particular;
     
  · the operating and stock performance of comparable companies;
     
  · general economic conditions and trends;
     
  · major catastrophic events;
     
  · announcements by us or our competitors of new products, significant acquisitions, strategic partnerships or divestitures;
     
  · changes in accounting standards, policies, guidance, interpretation or principles;
     
  · loss of external funding sources;
     
  · failure to maintain compliance with NASDAQ rules;
     
  · sales of our ordinary shares, including sales by our directors, officers or significant shareholders; and
     
  · additions or departures of key personnel.

 

Securities class action litigation is often instituted against companies following periods of volatility in their share price. This type of litigation could result in substantial costs to us and divert our management’s attention and resources. Moreover, securities markets may from time to time experience significant price and volume fluctuations for reasons unrelated to operating performance of particular companies. For example, in July 2008, the securities markets in the United States, China and other jurisdictions experienced the largest decline in share prices since September 2001. These market fluctuations may adversely affect the price of our ordinary shares and other interests in our company at a time when you want to sell your interest in us.

 

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We are a “foreign private issuer,” and have disclosure obligations that are different than those of other U.S. domestic reporting companies so you should not expect to receive the same information about us at the same time as a U.S. domestic reporting company may provide. Furthermore, if we lose our status as a foreign private issuer, we would be required to comply fully with the reporting requirements of the Exchange Act applicable to U.S. domestic issuers and would incur significant operational, administrative, legal and accounting costs that we would not incur as a foreign private issuer.

 

We are a foreign private issuer and, as a result, we are not subject to certain of the requirements imposed upon U.S. domestic issuers by the SEC. For example, we are not required to issue quarterly reports or proxy statements. Also, we are allowed four months to file our annual report with the SEC. We are not required to disclose certain detailed information regarding executive compensation that is required from U.S. domestic issuers. Further, our directors and executive officers are not required to report equity holdings and transactions in our equity under Section 16 of the Securities Act. As a foreign private issuer, we are also exempt from the requirements of Regulation FD (Fair Disclosure) which, generally, are meant to ensure that select groups of investors are not privy to specific information about an issuer before other investors. We are, however, still subject to the anti-fraud and anti-manipulation rules of the SEC, such as Rule 10b-5. Since many of the disclosure obligations required of us as a foreign private issuer are different than those required by other U.S. domestic reporting companies, our shareholders should not expect to receive information about us in the same amount and at the same time as information is received from, or provided by, other U.S. domestic reporting companies. We are liable for violations of the rules and regulations of the SEC which do apply to us as a foreign private issuer. Violations of these rules could affect our business, results of operations and financial condition.

 

If we lose our status as a foreign private issuer at some future time, we will be required to comply fully with the reporting requirements of the Exchange Act applicable to U.S. domestic issuers and would incur significant operational, administrative, legal and accounting costs that it would not incur as a foreign private issuer.

 

The payment of cash dividends depends on the decision of the Board of Directors and the cash and legal requirements of our company.

 

The Board of Directors decides if and when the Company will pay cash dividends. On August 11, 2016, the Board of Directors approved a regular cash dividend policy pursuant to which future cash dividends are expected to be paid to holders of the Company’s ordinary shares on an annual basis out of funds legally available for such purpose. However, the declaration and payment of future dividends will be at the discretion of the Board, and will depend upon many factors, including the Company’s financial condition, earnings, capital requirements of its businesses, legal requirements, regulatory constraints, industry practice, and other factors that the Board deems relevant.

 

If we fail to comply with the continued listing requirements of NASDAQ, we would face possible delisting, which would result in a limited public market for our shares and make obtaining future debt or equity financing more difficult for us.

 

Our ordinary shares are traded and listed on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol “HOLI.” The ordinary shares may be delisted if we fail to maintain certain listing requirements of the Nasdaq Stock Market, or NASDAQ.

 

We cannot ensure you that we will continue to comply with the requirements for continued listing on The NASDAQ Global Select Market in the future. If our shares lose their status on The NASDAQ Global Select Market and we are not successful in obtaining a listing on The NASDAQ Capital Market, our shares would likely trade in the over-the-counter market. If our shares were to trade on the over-the-counter market, selling our shares could be more difficult because smaller quantities of shares would likely be bought and sold, transactions could be delayed, and security analysts’ coverage of us may be reduced. In addition, in the event our shares are delisted, broker-dealers have certain regulatory burdens imposed upon them, which may discourage broker-dealers from effecting transactions in our shares, further limiting the liquidity of our shares. These factors could result in lower prices and larger spreads in the bid and ask prices for our shares. Such delisting from The NASDAQ Global Select Market and continued or further declines in our share price could also greatly impair our ability to raise additional necessary capital through equity or debt financing, and could significantly increase the ownership dilution to shareholders caused by our issuing equity in financing or other transactions.

 

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As a foreign private issuer, we are permitted to rely on exemptions from certain NASDAQ corporate governance standards applicable to domestic U.S. issuers. This may afford less protection to holders of our securities.

 

We are exempted from certain corporate governance requirements of the Nasdaq Stock Market by virtue of being a foreign private issuer. As a foreign private issuer, we are permitted to follow the governance practices of our home country, the BVI in lieu of certain corporate governance requirements of NASDAQ. As result, the standards applicable to us are considerably different than the standards applied to domestic U.S. issuers. For instance, we are not required to:

 

  · have a majority of the board be independent (although all of the members of the audit committee must be independent under the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, or the Exchange Act);
     
  · have a compensation committee and a nominating committee to be comprised solely of "independent directors; and
     
  · hold an annual meeting of shareholders no later than one year after the end of the Company’s fiscal year-end.

 

As discussed elsewhere in this Annual Report, we have relied on and intend to continue to rely on some of these exemptions. As a result, our shareholders may not be provided with the benefits of certain corporate governance requirements of the Nasdaq Stock Market.

 

You may have difficulty enforcing judgments obtained against us. 

 

We are a BVI company and substantially all of our assets are located outside of the United States. A substantial portion of our current business operations are conducted in the PRC. In addition, almost all of our directors and officers are nationals and residents of countries other than the United States. A substantial portion of the assets of these persons are located outside the United States. As a result, it may be difficult for you to effect service of process within the United States upon these persons. It may also be difficult for you to enforce in U.S. courts judgments obtained in U.S. courts including judgments based on the civil liability provisions of the U.S. federal securities laws against us and our officers and directors, many of whom are not residents in the United States and whose assets are located in significant part outside of the United States. The courts of the BVI would recognize as a valid judgment, a final and conclusive judgment in person is obtained in the federal or state courts in the United States against the Company under which a sum of money is payable (other than a sum of money payable in respect of multiple damages, taxes or other charges of a like nature or in respect of a fine or other penalty) and would give a judgment based thereon provided that (a) such courts had proper jurisdiction over the parties subject to such judgment, (b) such courts did not contravene the rules of natural justice of the BVI, (c) such judgment was not obtained by fraud, (d) the enforcement of the judgment would not be contrary to the public policy of the BVI, (e) no new admissible evidence relevant to the action is submitted prior to the rendering of the judgment by the courts of the BVI and (f) there is due compliance with the correct procedures under the laws of the BVI. In addition, there is uncertainty as to whether the courts of the BVI or the PRC, respectively, would recognize or enforce judgments of U.S. courts against us or such persons predicated upon the civil liability provisions of the securities laws of the United States or any state.

 

Because we are incorporated under the laws of the BVI, it may be more difficult for our shareholders to protect their rights than it would be for a shareholder of a corporation incorporated in another jurisdiction.

 

Our corporate affairs are governed by our memorandum and articles of association, by the BVI Business Companies Act, 2004 (as amended), or the 2004 Act, and by the common law of the BVI. Principles of law relating to such matters as the validity of corporate procedures, the fiduciary duties of management and the rights of our shareholders differ from those that would apply if we were incorporated in the United States or another jurisdiction. The rights of shareholders under BVI law may not be as clearly established as are the rights of shareholders in the United States or other jurisdictions. Under the laws of most jurisdictions in the United States, majority and controlling shareholders generally have certain fiduciary responsibilities to the minority shareholders. Shareholder action must be taken in good faith, and actions by controlling shareholders which are obviously unreasonable may be declared null and void. BVI law protecting the interests of minority shareholders may not be as protective in all circumstances as the law protecting minority shareholders in United States jurisdictions. In addition, the circumstances in which a shareholder of a BVI company may sue the company derivatively, and the procedures and defenses that may be available to the company, may result in the rights of shareholders of a BVI company being more limited than those of shareholders of a company organized in the United States. Furthermore, our directors have the power to take certain actions without shareholder approval which would require shareholder approval under the laws of most United States jurisdictions. The directors of a BVI corporation, subject in certain cases to court approval but without shareholder approval, may implement a reorganization, merger or consolidation, the sale of any assets, property, part of the business, or securities of the corporation, subject to a limit of up to 50% of such assets. The ability of our board of directors to create new classes or series of shares and the rights attached by amending our memorandum of association and articles of association without shareholder approval could have the effect of delaying, deterring or preventing a change in our control without any further action by the shareholders, including a tender offer to purchase our ordinary shares at a premium over then current market prices. Thus, our shareholders may have more difficulty protecting their interests in the face of actions by our board of directors or our controlling shareholders than they would have as shareholders of a corporation incorporated in another jurisdiction.

 

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We may be classified as a passive foreign investment company, which could result in adverse United States federal income tax consequences to U.S. shareholders.

 

We believe that we currently are not considered a “passive foreign investment company,” or PFIC, for United States federal income tax purposes.  However, each year we must make a separate determination as to whether we are a PFIC.  We cannot assure you that we will not be a PFIC for our future tax years. If a non-U.S. corporation either (i) has at least 75% of its gross income is passive income for a tax year or (ii) has at least 50% of the value of its assets (based on an average of the quarterly values of the assets during a tax year) attributable to assets that produce or are held for the production of passive income, then the non-U.S. corporation will be deemed a PFIC. The market value of our assets may be determined to a large extent by the market price of our ordinary shares. If we are treated as a PFIC for any tax year during which U.S. shareholders hold ordinary shares, certain adverse United States federal income tax consequences could apply to such U.S. holders.

 

Our Shareholder Rights Plan and charter documents may hinder or prevent change of control transactions. 

 

Our shareholder rights plan and provisions contained in our Memorandum and Articles of Association may discourage transactions involving an actual or potential change in our ownership. In addition, our Memorandum and Articles of Association authorizes our board of directors to issue up to 90,000,000 shares of preferred stock without any further action by the stockholders. Please see Item 10, Additional Information for more information regarding our shareholder rights plan. Such restrictions and issuances could make it more difficult, delay, discourage, prevent or make it more costly to acquire or effect a change-in-control, which in turn could prevent our stockholders from recognizing a gain in the event that a favorable offer is extended and could materially and negatively affect the market price of our ordinary shares, even if you or our other stockholders believe that such actions are in the best interests of us and our stockholders.

 

ITEM 4.INFORMATION ON THE COMPANY

 

A.History and Development of the Company

 

We were established under the laws of the BVI on February 6, 2006, as HLS Systems International, Ltd., in order to merge with Chardan North China Acquisition Corporation (“Chardan”), a Delaware special purpose acquisition company, originally established on March 10, 2005, with the primary purpose of effecting a business combination with an unidentified operating business that has its primary operating facilities located in China, in any city or province north of Yangtze River. On September 20, 2007, we acquired all of the issued and outstanding ordinary shares of GTH, a BVI company. On August 1, 2008, our ordinary shares started trading on NASDAQ Global Select Market. On July 17, 2009, we changed our name to Hollysys Automation Technologies Ltd. to more accurately reflect our core value of leveraging proprietary technologies to provide state-of-the-art automation and control solutions for our clients.

 

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On July 1, 2011, we purchased 100% of the equity of Concord Group for a combination consideration of cash and stock for a total value of approximately $42.9 million. Concord Group provides electric solutions with end-to-end design, engraving, engineering, procurement, project management, construction and commissioning, and maintenance, active in the rail industry in Singapore, Qatar, UAE and Saudi Kingdom and the building retrofit market in Singapore.

 

On April 1, 2013, we purchased 100% of the equity of Bond Group for a purchase price of approximately US$73 million, payable 50% in cash and 50% in ordinary shares of Hollysys. The stock will be issued to the Bond Group shareholders in three installments over three years, 60% of which are incentive shares and will be based on certain performance targets for calendar years 2013 and 2014. Additional ordinary shares, as a premium on performance, will be issuable to the Bond Group shareholders, if Bond Group outperforms the established targets, but the premium will not exceed 15% of the total incentive shares in any case. The operating results of Bond Group have been included in our consolidated financial statements effective from April 1, 2013. Bond Group provides complete mechanical and electrical solutions with end to end capabilities in design, engineering, procurement, project management, construction and commissioning, and maintenance to a wide array of industries, including factories, data centers, banks, hospitals, airports, power stations, gas and instrumentation plants, hotels, commercial centers, residential buildings and infrastructure works. We seek to take advantage of Bond Group’s strong presence and brand name in Southeast Asia and to strengthen our Southeast Asian business.

 

On November 24, 2015, the Company established Concord Electrical Contracting, Ltd. (“CECL”) to explore the market in Qatar. CCPL has a 49% direct ownership of CECL and the remaining 51% equity interest is held by a nominee shareholder. Through a series of contractual arrangements, CCPL is entitled to appoint majority of directors of CECL who have the power to direct the activities that significantly impact CECL’s economic performance. Further, CCPL is entitled to 95% of the variable returns from CECL’s operations. As a result, despite of its minority direct ownership of CECL arrangements, CCPL is considered the primary beneficiary of CECL.

 

In July 2016, Beijing Hollycon Medicine & Technology. Co., Ltd. (“Hollycon”), previously as one of the Company’s subsidiaries, issued new shares for an aggregate cash consideration of $30,943 to two new third investors. At the same time, the Company disposed 0.6% of its equity interest in Hollycon for cash consideration of $464. These two transactions resulted in dilution of the Company’s equity interest in Hollycon from 51% to 30%. According to the revised article of association, Hollycon will be managed by a board of directors comprising of a total 5 members, of which, the Company can appoint two directors while the other three shareholders can appoint one director each. The Company can also appoint the chairman of the board. All major management and operation decision need be approved by the board and requires approval by at least 2/3 of board directors. Profits is allocated to shareholders based on the percentage of respective initial investment. The Company lost control over Hollycon upon the completion of the two transactions set out above, but maintained significant influence over Hollycon, and accounted for the investment in Hollycon under equity method. Upon the deconsolidation date, the Company recorded the retained non-controlling equity investee at fair value of $22,737 and recognized a gain of $14,514. The fair value of retained non-controlling interest in Hollycon was measured using a discounted cash flow approach. Key estimates and assumptions include the amount and timing of future expected cash flows, terminal value growth rates, and discount rate.

 

In July 2017, Bond Corporation Pte. Ltd (“BCPL”), a wholly-owned Singapore subsidiary of the Company, and a Malaysian citizen (the “Trustee”) entered into a trust deed, under which, 49.1% of BCPL’s equity interests in Bond M & E Sdn. Bhd. (“BMJB”), a Malaysian company, which previously was a 100% subsidiary of BCPL, was transferred to the Trustee. According to the trust deed, all of the beneficial interests in BMJB belong to BCPL and the Trustee shall hold the legal title of the transferred shares on trust for and act on behalf of BCPL absolutely. Any dividend, interest and other benefits received or receivable by the Trustee will be transferred to BCPL. The Trustee shall exercise the managerial rights and voting power in a manner directed by a prior written notice from BCPL. The Trustee shall be obligated to vote in the same manner as BCPL in the absence of any written notice. In addition, an undated Form of Transfer of Securities with the transferee’s name left blank was duly executed by the Trustee and delivered to BCPL. Therefore, BCPL can transfer the 49.1% of equity interests to any party at any time without further approval by the Trustee. Accordingly, the Company believes it holds all beneficial rights, obligation and the power of the 100% equity interest in BMJB, and therefore consolidates 100% of equity interests in BMJB into its financial statements.

 

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B.Business Overview

 

We are a leading provider of automation and control technologies and products in China and increasingly in Southeast Asia, India and the Middle East that enable our diversified industry and utility customers to improve operating safety, reliability, and efficiency. Founded in 1993, we have approximately 3,300 employees with a nationwide China presence and with subsidiaries and offices in Southeast Asia, India and the Middle East. We have served over approximately 10,000 customers in the industrial, railway, subway, nuclear power, and mechanical and electronic industries in China, Southeast Asia, India and the Middle East. Our proprietary technologies are applied through our industrial automation solution suite, including the DCS (Distributed Control System), PLC (Programmable Logic Controller), RMIS (Real-time Management Information System), HAMS (HolliAS Asset Management System), OTS (Operator Training System), HolliAS BATCH (Batch Application Package), HolliAS APC Suite (Advanced Process Control Package), SIS (Safety Instrumentation System), high-speed railway signaling system of TCC (Train Control Center), ATP (Automatic Train Protection), SCADA System (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition System), nuclear power non-safety automation and control system HolliAs-NMS DCS and other products.

 

We historically focused our efforts on the area of DCS, which are networks of controllers, sensors, actuators and other devices that can be programmed to control outputs based on input conditions and/or algorithms, which are mainly used to control continuous manufacturing processes. Our DCS have been widely used in the industries involving continuous flow of material handling, such as power generation, petro-chemical, chemical, metallurgy, building materials and new energy. We also command a position in Chinese nuclear power automation and control market as the only qualified local automation and control product provider to the non-safety control for both nuclear island and conventional island of nuclear power reactors in nuclear power stations.

 

We have a substantial reputation in the PRC domestic industrial automation industry for our comprehensive capabilities and have focused on the development of this market. We carry out integrated solution projects for, render automation services to, or sell our products to, national or multi-provincial companies with subsidiaries located throughout China. To date, we have served more than 10,000 industrial enterprise customers including state-owned enterprises, multinational corporations and local private companies and have undertaken over 30,000 projects. We believe that the quality of our systems is unsurpassed by local Chinese competitors and comparable to high-end foreign suppliers of DCS and the history of our projects supports that view. Some of our renowned customers include the five major Chinese power generation companies, the three major Chinese petroleum companies, and international companies such as BASF, etc.

 

We are as well a player in the PLC market, where the products are mainly used in discrete control and applied to a wide array of industries. PLCs are usually integrated together into machines to provide control at machinery level. We have been expanding our proprietary products suite and gradually shifting ourselves from a single PLC product provider to a total solution provider. As the outlook for intelligent manufacturing and factory automation stays positive, we believe that such repositioning would enable us to better respond to the changing behavior of the customers.

 

Generally speaking, our solution encompasses third-party hardware-centric products such as instrumentation and actuators, our proprietary DCS/PLC products, and valued-added software packages such as AMS (Asset Management System), MES (Manufacturing Execution System), APC (Advanced Process Control), OTS Simulation (Operator Training System), and others. The safety system SIS (Safety Instrumentation System), certified under European safety standards and newly introduced to the market in July 2012 has further expanded our proprietary product suite in the industrial automation segment.

 

We have branched out from the industrial automation domain into the subway and high-speed rail businesses, leveraging on our core competency and strong research and development capabilities, and have already established a key position in the high-speed rail signaling market and subway SCADA market. Besides, we have developed our proprietary high-speed rail signaling system and subway signaling system, and certified both according to European Safety Standard Certification Level 4.

 

Internationally, we have a strong presence in Southeast Asia and increasingly in the Middle East, India and Hong Kong SAR. Through the acquisitions of Concord and Bond Groups, we are expanding and deepening our ability to offer mechanical and electrical solutions in design, engineering, procurement, project management, construction and commissioning, and maintenance to a wide range of industries, such as manufacturing, banks, hospitals, airports, power plants, commercial centers, hotels, and infrastructure works. We believe that our present leadership position in the high-growth segments is attributable to our vision, execution, and strong research and development capabilities.

 

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During the past several years we have achieved a number of significant contract wins in international arena, including (i) contracts with MTR Corporation of Hong Kong SAR to provide a complete suite of high-speed rail signaling systems to Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Hong Kong Section; (ii) a contract with SMRT Trains Ltd. in Singapore to provide design, electrification and installation for station renovations on North-South and East-West lines and a contract with Thales Solutions Asia Pte. Ltd. to provide design, installation, testing and commission for replacing the existing signaling systems for the North-South and East-West lines and install new signaling systems for the Tuas West Extension line in Singapore; (iii) a contract with Land Transport Authority in Singapore to provide the Integrated Supervisory Control System for the Thomson & Eastern Region Lines in Singapore; (iv) a contract with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. to provide electrical installation services for part of the Power Distribution System Package of the first Phase of Doha Metro; (vi) maintenance contracts with MTR Corporation of Hong Kong SAR spanning multiple years. In overseas industrial automation business, we have as well achieved remarkable milestone in several sub-industries in Southeast Asia in fiscal year 2018, and we are expecting more to come in future.

 

Strategy

 

The goal for Hollysys is to become one of the world's well-known automation and control technology and product providers. To meet this goal we plan to enhance the core competencies that have made us a leading domestic automation and control solutions provider in China, the only Chinese company qualified to design and manufacture non-safety control systems of nuclear power stations, and a leader in the industrial automation and in the high-speed rail and subway sectors. The principal elements of our core business strategies are as follows:

 

  · To further establish our leadership position as a dominant automation and control solutions provider across all the addressable market segments– We seek to be a potential industry consolidator in China and Southeast Asia to become a leading provider of industrial automation and control technology applications for clients in various industries, by presenting ourselves as a total solution provider. We seek to further penetrate the industrial automation and railway business with more proprietary products to enhance our leading position and expand our market share. Since the majority of our customers are operating in a wide range of industries, we stand to be a prime beneficiary of China’s and increasingly Southeast Asia’s industrial automation market growth. Such growth is closely related to the economic development, rising labor costs, and growing awareness on environment protection, clean energy and lower carbon emission in the region. Our combination of patented technologies, strong research and development capabilities, ability to leverage strategic alliances and acquisitions to enter and penetrate new market segments, and a comprehensive understanding of the Chinese and Southeast Asia markets should allow us to capitalize on these growth opportunities.

 

  · To continuously enhance our leadership position in technology – We have long been recognized as a pioneer in the development of industrial automation and control technology and applications in China. We are continuously seeking ways to improve our existing product lines while being committed to the development of new applications, platforms, and products. In order to maintain our leadership in technology, we have devoted significant resources to the research and development that is undertaken by a group of trained and skilled experts and engineers. We have improved the 5th generation DCS named HOLLiAS-K, which is superior to the performance of the 4th generation in terms of reliability, flexibility, and ease of use. Hollysys has applied its years of experiences from nuclear DCS into the design of HOLLiAS-K. Flexible architectures of P-to-P (Peer to Peer), C/S (Client/Server), or hybrid system can be selected according to the project scale. Industry specific software solutions are designed for better customization leveraging our deep industry knowhow and expertise. Further advantages such as vertical mounting, modular connection, and tilted I/O design make the engineering and wiring more effective and deliver the customers faster and more stable field installation. We also developed China’s first proprietary Safety Instrumented System, named HiaGuard-SIS, and passed Safety Integrity Level 3 certification in compliance with the most stringent European standards. HiaGuard-SIS is a critical safety protection system comprising sensors, logic solvers and actuators for the purposes of taking a process to a safe state when normal predetermined set points are exceeded, or safe operating conditions are violated. The SIS developed by Hollysys is applicable to ESD (Emergency Shutdown System), PSD (Process Shutdown System), FGS (Fire and Gas Systems), BMS (Burner Management System), and ETS (Emergency Trip System). In March 2017, with our LK series PLC passing the international certification of Wurldtech’s Achilles, we became the first domestic PLC supplier to have been certified under Achilles Level 1, Besides, we are continuously devoting resources to research and development on our addressable market related technologies and products, and international market, including track circuit subway signaling system, industrial automation motion control, machinery control products and technologies to complement our existing product portfolio.

 

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  · To actively explore and prepare for international market expansion– Management is pursuing a strategy for Hollysys to have meaningful revenue generated from the international market and to become one of the prominent and well-known automation and control players in the world. We made significant progress in this business objective through the acquisitions of Concord and Bond Groups, which are headquartered in Singapore and Malaysia respectively, by which we obtained a well-established distribution channel and customer/partner bases to cross-sell our products in the rail and industrial automation segments and building automation and retrofit segments, and seasoned management teams to form the core of our international team.  We have also increased our mechanical and engineering solution capabilities and are expanding to be able to serve a wider array of industries.  We entered into a contract with Hong Kong MTR Corporation to supply the entire high-speed rail signaling system to Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail with a total contract value amounted to approximately US$85 million, including the main contract signed and the supplementary contracts obtained subsequently, In addition, we signed the contract with Land Transport Authority in Singapore to provide the Integrated Supervisory Control System for the Thomson & Eastern Region Lines in Singapore valued at approximately SGD 16 million.

 

The high-speed rail signaling system includes the on-board ATP (Automatic Train Protection) system that is used to protect the train from travelling at excessive speeds, the ground based TCC (Train Control Center) for ground safety control of trains, and other auxiliary interfacing products. Based on our own technologies, we are able to customize our system platforms to meet every level of requirements from conventional rail signaling systems to the most state-of-the-art, high-speed rail applications, not only for the Chinese market but also for the international market.

 

China Railway Corporation employs its own administrative admission system and set specific standards for the high-speed rail signaling products deployed in China’s high-speed rail lines. In addition to our products certified under those domestic standards, we have redesigned the whole set of our high-speed rail signaling systems based wholly on our own proprietary technologies, to better compete in the rail market outside of China,. Our products that have passed European Safety Standards SIL 4 certification (Safety Integrity Level 4) include ATP (Automatic Train Protection), TCC (Train Control Center), LEU (Line-Side Electronic Unit), BTM (Balise Transmission Module), TSRS (Temporary Speed Restriction Server), HVC (Hollysys Vital Computer) and Interlocking system in the high-speed rail sector.

 

In the subway sector, the proprietary ATS (Automatic Train Supervision) and CBI (Computer Based Interlocking) passed SIL2 and SIL4 certification respectively in 2011. And in early 2013, we finished the development and certified ZC (Zone Controller), LEU (Line-side Electronic Unit) and Balise for subway signaling system according to SIL4 requirements. The ATP (Automatic Train Protection) for subway signaling was developed and passed SIL4 certification in the end of 2013, thus all subway signaling products have been certified according to SIL4.

 

Products and Services

 

As a leading provider of automation and control technology and applications in China, and increasingly in Southeast Asia, we provide our customers with our standard and customized products and corresponding services based on each client’s specific requirements.  We are committed to providing reliable, advanced and cost-effective solutions to help customers optimize their processes to achieve higher quality, greater reliability and better productivity and profitability.

 

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Industrial Automation:

 

Our principal offering is a comprehensive suite of automation systems for a wide spectrum of industrial market clientele, ranging from power, chemical, petrochemical, to nuclear, metallurgy, building materials, food-beverage, pharmaceutical and other industries. Our comprehensive suite of automation solution consists of third-party hardware-centric products such as instrumentation and actuators, our proprietary software-centric DCS/PLC, and valued-added software packages such as RMIS (Real-time Management Information System), HAMS (HolliAS Asset Management System), OTS (Operator Training System), HolliAS BATCH (Batch Application Package), HolliAS APC Suite (Advanced Process Control Package), and SIS (Safety Instrumentation System). Our mainstream products for this market segment are DCS products and PLC. DCS is a network of controllers, sensors, actuators and other devices that can be programmed to control outputs based on input conditions through logic calculations. In an automated production line, sensors or so-called “instrumentations” are distributed across the production facility to monitor sub-systems like the robots, CNC machines, and logistic tools. These sensors are like human eyes, which monitor the process, and detect any abnormal situations. The information collected from those sensors is then transmitted to the DCS for centralized data processing through communication networks. The central computer (brain) processes information and generates commands, based on sophisticated algorithmic and pre-set parameters. These commands are then sent to actuators (muscles/bones) through communication devices to execute the orders and maintain production flow. PLCs are computer devices installed on machines or equipment, for example, on a factory assembly line, for manufacturing automation.

 

As the only proven domestic automation control systems provider to the nuclear power industry in China, we provide our HOLLiAS-NMS DCS product to China’s nuclear power industry. In a nuclear power station, the nuclear island operates to transform nuclear energy to heat energy, and pass on the steam generated by the steam generator to the conventional island, where steam drives the turbine to generate the electricity, and pass on to the transformer for loading onto the grid. Our HOLLiAS-NMS proprietary control systems are now used for non-safety operation control. The know-how was accumulated from our industrial DCS applications in high-end, conventional energy power plants, with much more sophisticated software and hardware specifications, and more stringent production and quality assurance process. Our nuclear joint venture with China General Nuclear Power Corporation and China Techenergy Co., Ltd., has already successfully completed developing its proprietary safety nuclear power automation and control system and has started to commercialize such technology.

 

Rail Transportation:

 

Hollysys has successfully scaled its automation application from industrial manufacturing to rail and subway industries, with proprietary product lines including, TCC (Train Control Center) and ATP (Automation Train Protection). An ATP essentially acts as the train over-speed protection mechanism. It collects real-time information like speed limit ahead, train operation status, line data, instructions from train control center, and then combines that information with the train parameters to produce train protection curves. In case of any human errors, like driver’s negligence at the red light, it applies emergency brakes automatically. TCCs is an on-ground control center at railway stations or equipment stations which monitor route condition, track status, train schedules, distance between trains, and the working status of other essential function devices, and then through logic calculation, generate control instructions and commands. The command information from the TCC is then transmitted to the ATP located on the locomotives/trains, through track circuits and electronic beacons located at various points along the railway line, or wirelessly.

 

We have been providing our SCADA system to a number of China’s subway lines for many years, including the Beijing Metro, Guangzhou Metro, Shenzhen Metro, Tianjin Metro, Dalian Metro, Wuhan Metro, Chengdu Metro and Lanzhou Metro. SCADA is an open software platform to enable integrated and unified monitoring of all necessary sub-systems of the subway, including the Power Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition System, Building Automatic System, Fire Alarm System, Platform Screen Door System, Access Control System, Closed Circuit Television, Passenger Information System, Passenger Train Information System, and Alarm System. Given the exponential growth in China’s subway market and the continued growth expected for the decades to come, Hollysys has developed its proprietary Subway Signaling System, based on its strong research and development capability and technical know-how of signaling application accumulated from high-speed rail. Currently the development and certification according to the European safety standards are basically finished. The current subway signaling market is predominantly occupied by multi-national corporations, such as Siemens, Alstom and Thales.

 

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We are the supplier of the entire high-speed rail signaling system to Shenzhen-Hong Kong high-speed rail line for the Hong Kong MTR, which marked our breakthrough into the international high-speed rail signaling market. In addition, we signed a contract with Land Transport Authority ("LTA") in Singapore to provide our proprietary Integrated Supervisory Control System for Thomson & Eastern Region Lines in Singapore.

 

Mechanical and Electrical:

 

We established a stronger foot-hold in Southeast Asia through the acquisitions of Concord and Bond Groups in 2011 and 2013 respectively. Concord and Bond Groups mainly provide mechanical and electrical solutions, including design, engineering, procurement, project management, construction and commissioning, and maintenance related services. Concord Group mainly focuses on railway transportation in Singapore, Macau, Qatar, UAE and Saudi Kingdom markets, and Bond Group mainly focuses on factories, data centers, banks, hospitals, airports, power stations, gas and instrumentation plants, hotels, commercial centers, residential buildings and infrastructure works in Malaysia. Through the acquisitions, the Company seeks to expand the existing distributions and marketing channels to sell the Company’s existing product lines to the fast growing Southeast Asia and the Middle East markets.

 

Project Implementation:

 

We establish a project group of sales engineers, technical engineers and project management professionals for each of our potential customer to provide them total integrated solutions tailored to their specific requirements. The sales engineers and technical engineers work together to offer the best customized solutions from understanding customer’s detailed requirements through on-site studies. The technical engineers are responsible for hardware assembly, software configuration, testing and installation, commissioning and trial operation, and start-up and training; while the project management professionals oversee budgetary matters, coordinate the work force, ensure adequacy of resources and monitor progress and quality to ensure the timely completion of each project.  Our integrated solutions projects involve one or more of the following activities:

 

·Solution planning – We provide our customers with strategic and tactical reviews of their current operations and future requirements. The planning includes defining client business requirements, developing appropriate hardware and software, and selecting preferred technology.

 

·Solution design – We detail the industry specifications and implementation tactics necessary to achieve our customer’s objectives. Hollysys also take into consideration the integration of the hardware and software deployed in our integrated solution with the existing ones of the customer, and the ongoing management followed Examples of these services include defining functional requirements for the system and our components, developing integration plans and designing of customer-specific system and services applications.

 

·Solution implementation –We install the recommended systems and provide essential services throughout the solution implementation process, to better meet our customers' specific requirements. Key activities include project management, hardware procurement and production, software development, configuration and field installation and testing, and development of customized system and services management applications.

 

Our proprietary technology and products based integrated solutions create value for our customers and improve their competitive strengths by:

 

·Generating synergy and improving efficiency of our customers through integrating communications, marketing and service functions;

 

·Utilizing our industry and process knowledge to develop customized solutions that improve the efficiency of our customers;

 

·Providing a software platform for the optimization of management operations, which provides real-time automation and information solutions throughout a business; and

 

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·Offering maintenance and training services to our customers, which help to cut costs and improve operating efficiency.

 

We customize our floor plans based on conducting careful on-site studies, building design-specific network systems using our proprietary technology and software, and offering manufacturing execution system services to ensure that real-time management control is available to our customers in a streamlined and easy-to-use manner.

 

We believe that our product design and applications integrated in the solutions are unmatched among our domestic competitors.  We also believe that the sophistication and quality of our products rival those of the multi-national automation and control product suppliers, while our insightful understanding of demands of our Chinese customers and the ability to respond give us a leading edge over foreign competitors. The value of this combination is reflected in our strong revenue and profit growth over the years.

 

Markets

 

Industrial Automation Market

 

According to Gong Kong Data, an independent industry research group, following the decline in the calendar year 2015 and 2016, the DCS market in China in calendar year 2017 recorded a YOY growth of 9.1%. Performance of different industries vary from one another. Chemical, petrochemical and power remain to be the backbone of DCS market. Growing profitability has driven a new wave of investment in chemical and petrochemical. Power industry, given the national policy on structural transformation and pollution reduction, is undergoing a gradual slow down. Other industries like municipal works, building materials and metallurgy etc. were in different cycle, therefore presenting mixed performance. By Gong Kong Data’s estimation, the DCS market in China is to grow stably at single digit in the next 3 years.

 

Multi-national companies including Honeywell (US), Siemens (Germany), Emerson (US), ABB (Sweden), Rockwell (US), Yokogawa (Japan) and Hitachi (Japan) account for the majority of the global automation market share, and such market pattern is similar in China. However, with years of development, domestic players including Hollysys and Supcon, etc. are gradually becoming one of those leading players in different verticals.

 

Several noticeable trends of the market have to be mentioned. Firstly, Chinese government’s plan on industrial transformation and upgrading, indicated by documents, policy and slogan such as “China Manufacture 2025” and “Industry 4.0”, have injected vitality to the market. The power industry, though facing gradual slow down thanks to structural transformation, also presents opportunities as environmental protection, green manufacture and energy saving move up along the agenda. Pilot projects of intelligent factory have been undertaken by SOEs in chemical and petrochemical, etc., sharing idea with the general industries on way of upgrading. In order to achieve a favorable stance in competition, companies from large SOEs to SMEs will be gradually seeking more efficiency and sophistication in manufacturing and management. Secondly, the gradual penetration of automation control system along with the growing interaction between customers and system providers, has created a sizeable after sale market to address, covering routine maintenance and customized upgrade, etc. With the successful practice in domestic market, companies in China are also seeking market expansion in adjacent regions such as Southeast Asia. Thirdly, along with the evolution of the market, new demand such as information security, flexibility and compatibility of the product arises, posing both challenges and opportunities to all players.

 

We believe that the growth of China’s industrial automation market will continue to be healthy given the evolution of the market and transformation and upgrading of Chinese industry. Our client base includes large state-owned enterprises, multi-national companies, and other domestic companies. Our main competitors in this field are global players such as ABB, Siemens, and Emerson, as well as Supcon from China. We believe that the Hollysys brand recognition and market reputation, and our strong research and development capabilities will continuously enable us to penetrate high-margin market segments currently dominated by foreign companies.

 

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We are well-positioned to benefit from China’s nuclear power development. At present, China’s nuclear power sector is relatively underdeveloped, with the vast majority of power generated by coal-fired power plants. According to figures announced by China Nuclear Energy Association, as of August 21, 2018 there were 40 nuclear reactors in commercial operation in China. This represents a very small fraction of the total installed gross capacity of power generation. In terms of electricity generated watt per hour, the nuclear electricity generated by now is approximately 2%-3%, lagging far behind the world average of 15%, with France being the highest with 70% of its power generated from nuclear power plants.

 

We are penetrating into international markets with primary focus on Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, India and the Middle East, all of which are largely developing areas. The strong growth of infrastructure and increased demand for automation technologies will benefit us in these areas.

 

Rail Transportation Market

 

Another important end-market for Hollysys is the high-speed rail market in China, where we command a leading position in providing high-speed rail signaling systems to ensure the safety of passenger train movement. The China Railway Corporation developed a national high-speed rail signaling technological standard, the China Train Control System, or the CTCS. Under the CTCS, the standard governing the 200-250km/hour speed category is called C2, while C3 governs the 300-350km/hour category. These standards are different from the international standards propounded by European organizations or Japan.

 

By the end of the 12th Five Year Plan, the total length of China’s high-speed railway has already reached 19,000 kilometers. According to the 13th Five Year Plan another 11,000 kilometers of high-speed railway will be built by the end of 2020, making a total length of 30,000 kilometers, covering over 80% of China’s major cities. A more comprehensive network of “Eight Horizontals and Eight Verticals” will be in place by 2025, surpassing the previous “Four Horizontals and Four Verticals”, making inter and intra-regional railway transportation more efficient and convenient. As one of the three high-speed rail signaling products providers in the C2 category in China, and one of the three high-speed rail signaling products providers to the C3 segment, we believe that Hollysys is well positioned to benefit from this unprecedented, world leading high-speed railway build-out.

 

We are also working to expand our rail products supply such as track circuit. Fiscal year 2018 has witnessed our breakthrough in this new product line as we signed our first track circuit contract for both C1 and C2 speed range. We look to explore more in this sizable market in the future.

 

We also provide our proprietary software platform and solutions of SCADA to the subway market. China’s subway market is expected to receive significant government investment due to urbanization and environmental concerns. According to the development plan for a modern comprehensive transportation system during the 13th five-year-plan published by the State Council, total length of subway lines under operation by 2020 will be 6000 km, compared with 3300km by the end of the 12th five-year-plan period. Leveraging on our know-how from high-speed surface rail signaling technology and our well-recognized brand name, we have finished the development of our proprietary subway signaling system, and are preparing for bidding subway signaling projects both in China and abroad. We believe it will present a better value positioning to our subway customers by bundling our proprietary subway SCADA system with our proprietary signaling system, in this way we are also expecting our market share and gross margin to expand in this business sector.

 

In Southeast Asia, there are also extensive subway lines construction and subway signaling system reconstruction projects due to the operation safety and efficiency concern in densely populated areas such as Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia. As an increasing number of subway signaling systems in developed countries are approaching the end of their product cycle, Hollysys will take the opportunity to meet the demand of subway signaling system replacement and upgrading

 

Mechanical and Electrical Solutions Market

 

We offer mechanical and electrical solutions (M&E) through Concord and Bond Groups in Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Hong Kong. Through acquisitions of the above entities, we are expanding and deepening our ability to offer mechanical and electrical solutions in design, engineering, procurement, project management, construction and commissioning, and maintenance to a wide range of industries, such as manufacturing, banks, hospitals, airports, power plants, commercial and residential buildings, hotels, and railway and subway lines.

 

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The Singapore construction industry embraces opportunities as demand is expected to increase in public sectors including both transportation and non-transportation projects. The government has rolled out major upcoming development on rail, water, air/sea port infrastructure work. The Malaysian construction industry is supported by large scale investment under the previous government plan to develop the Country’s overall infrastructure by implementing various projects in the transports, tourism, tele-communication, education, healthcare and retail sectors. However, challenges remain as the industry is expected to expand in a relatively slow pace due to the newly elected government. Construction projects in the Middle East market are also rolling out, but challenges remain given the political issue.

 

Integrated Contracts

 

The main channel through which we get our automation system business is the procurement bidding process. Customers seeking bids propose their requirements and specifications in legal bidding documents and those companies that are interested in obtaining these contracts make a bid in written form. If we win the bid, we finalize an integrated contract. We derive a large percentage of our total consolidated revenues from the integrated contracts that we win through the bid process. In addition, we also generate revenue from products sales of spare parts and component products to customers for maintenance and replacement purposes after the completion of the integrated solution contract, and from provision of service such as maintenance and training which tends to provide a recurring revenue stream.

 

The purpose of an integrated contract is to furnish an automation system that provides the customer with a total solution for the automation or process control requirement being addressed. The automation system and total solution that we offer consists of hardware, software and services, all of which are customized to meet the particular needs and technical specifications of our customers. None of the hardware, software and service has independent functionality, and therefore cannot be sold separately to customers.

 

The major terms of an integrated solution contract include solution planning and design, system installation, customer acceptance, payment milestones and warranty. The process of fulfilling an integrated contract consists of the following four stages:

 

·Solution planning and design - We provide customers with a customized plan for achieving the required solution by establishing a project group for each contract. The project group includes system engineers who propose and discuss and agree on the system design and implementation plan with the technical personnel of the customers.

 

·System manufacturing and installation - Based on the design and implementation plan, and in accordance with the project schedule, we enter into the process of purchasing the necessary hardware, manufacturing components for the hardware, developing software platform, re-configuring the software embedded in the hardware, and fabricating the integrated hardware into cabinets, on-site installation and testing, and training customer’s personnel about how to use the automation and total solution.

 

·Customer acceptance - The procedures for customer inspection and acceptance of the system are typically contained in the contracts. The initial inspection usually occurs when the hardware is delivered to the customer’s site for the purpose of detecting any obvious physical damage during shipping and to confirm that the entire order was delivered. A final acceptance will be performed upon the satisfaction of integrated solution testing.

 

·Warranty period - The integrated solution contracts customarily provide our customers with a one-year warranty (although sometimes the warranty period may be more than one year depending on the customer and the negotiations for the contract), which runs from the date of the final customer acceptance. The end of the warranty period represents fulfillment of the entire contract.

 

Because of the nature of customized integrated contracts, a customer does not have the right to return the products that we deliver, so long as such products conform and perform to the customer’s specification. Prior to delivering our products to a customer’s site, we perform an internal test to ensure that the automation system works as intended. After installing the products on a customer’s site, any problems are solved during trial runs. Once the testing requirements have been satisfied, a customer will execute a customer acceptance document, which marks the beginning of the warranty period. Due to the nature of this process, many companies in the automation systems business generally do not carry product liability insurance.

 

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The size of an integrated contract is determined by a customer’s needs in terms of the amount of equipment needed and the complexity of the integrated solution. The size of an integrated contract drives the revenues generated by the contract. Because certain contracts will require working periods longer than one year, the best way to measure the contract revenue realized is to use the percentage-of-completion method. Ultimately, our revenue stream will be driven by the average price of an integrated contract and how many integrated contracts have started in each reporting period.

 

Our backlog of contracts presents the amount of unrealized revenue to be earned from the contracts that we have won. Accordingly, any increase or decrease in new contracts won by us, or any change of scheduled delivery dates will have a future impact on our future revenue streams. In the event of a delay in the delivery schedule, then the time of inspection, installation, trial run and customer acceptance will be delayed accordingly, all of which will affect our revenue recognition. If the delay of delivering the specified automation systems was a result of our inability to deliver the system on a timely basis, then we will be held responsible for this delay, in accordance with the terms specified in the respective integrated contracts.

 

Competition

 

We compete with various domestic and international corporations offering automation and control systems. We believe that our proprietary technologies and products provide us with a strong competitive advantage over our domestic Chinese competitors. However, a number of multinational companies, some of whom have substantially greater financial and other resources than we currently have, have been offering first rate automation systems in competition with us. We believe that our primary competitors in China industrial automation market for our products multi-national corporations, such as ABB, Honeywell, Emerson and Siemens. Supcon, a local private company affiliated with Zhejiang University, is among the primary competitors as well. In Southeast Asia and the Middle East markets, our principal competitors for industrial automation are multinational corporations such as ABB, Siemens, Emerson, Yokogawa and Honeywell.

 

In the PRC high-speed rail business, given the administrative admission system employed by China Railway Corporation and the governing of national rail technology standard, the China Train Control Standard (CTCS), we believe that competition from multi-national companies will decrease gradually. Currently, Hollysys is currently one of the three entities that supply signaling products to China’s 200-250km/h segment of the high-speed rail market. The other two are China Academy of Railway Science and Zhuzhou CRRC. Hollysys is one of the three signaling product providers to China’s 300-350km/h segment of the high-speed rail market. The other providers are CRSC and China Academy of Railway Science. In SCADA market, we mainly compete with Nanjing Automation Research Institute (NARI). In the nuclear automation segment, we mainly compete with multi-national corporations such as Siemens, Areva, and Invensys. The major competitors in the international rail and subway signaling markets are Bombardier and Alstom.

 

For the mechanical and electrical solutions business, the main competitors for Concord and Bond Groups include Bintai Kinden Corporation Berhad, PJI Holding Berhad, and LFE Corporation Berhad, Kurihara, Sanyo, Bintai KDK and Gammon Construction.

 

When compared to our competitors, apart from satisfying certain local based criteria, we believe that our key competitive edge is the provision of better value for money to our customers with the following distinctive attributes:

 

·Emphasis on Engineering. Engineers are a critical element of effective design of both hardware and software components of automation equipment and systems. For western companies, they are also a very costly element of the process. Even the largest western companies face constraints in the size of their engineering staff due to the high salaries and attendant costs. One of our competitive advantages is the lower cost of engineers in China relative to those in the Western nations. Applying high levels of engineering effort to each product enables us to provide a solution that is tailored not only to the industry in which the customer operates, but also to the customer’s specific needs. That custom solution is provided at a cost that is typically lower than the generic products of our competitors.

 

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·Industry Process Knowledge. We devote substantial time and effort to understand our customers and their business. This knowledge helps to ensure that the systems we design will provide the optimum in benefits for our customers. We maintain this information in an extensive “library” of industry process information that we utilize to speed up the system design process and to maximize the quality of the result, while at the same time minimizing costs. As a result, we were able to take into account the widely varying degrees of sophistication and resources that our customers possess. The result of this strategy is to broaden our potential customer base and to consistently deliver products that are of value to these customers.

 

·Integration Services. Western automation system companies are principally system platform suppliers and the role of integrating the systems into the customer’s overall management information system is generally left to independent firms. While such firms are widespread in western countries, China and other emerging market countries do not have a large number of systems integration companies to perform this work, as these companies have been historically unprofitable in China. We have bridged this gap by providing a vertically integrated solution to our customers that includes the integration of our hardware into the customers’ overall manufacturing and information systems. This combination of the two aspects of system design and installation take further advantage of a lower cost of engineering services and provides another benefit, as the design and integration teams can work together to produce the best result more quickly and efficiently, again lowering costs.

 

·Core Technologies. Although we deliver tailored systems, our systems are based on basic modules of automation technology that are common across a broad array of industries and applications. Using these modules as a starting point, development of an industry and customer-specific product is both more efficient and produces a better result than starting from scratch each time. That means, with our labor cost advantages, we can provide a highly customized automation product at a very favorable cost.

 

·Use of Engineering Sales Personnel. The use of trained engineers in product and system design is complemented by the use of engineers in the sales process as well. With engineers included in the sales process, we provide the ability to understand from the beginning the needs of the customer and how to address their issues and the ability to convey that information to the team that will ultimately develop the system to be installed.

 

·Providing service for the Broad Array of Chinese Customers’ Capabilities. China’s rapid growth and industrialization distinguish it from other manufacturing nations in some ways. There are many “established” Chinese companies that operate in facilities that are decades old, many companies that operate in new or recently upgraded facilities, and the largest number that fall somewhere in between. We understand, to a greater extent than our western competitors, the full range of needs and capabilities that Chinese customers possess, and we have designed our business to meet them. As a result, we are able to offer even the most basic control systems solution while also providing the most sophisticated systems available to applications that meet the rigorous requirement of the highly complex and demanding nuclear power industry.

 

·Pace of Product Development. Another way that we keep ahead of our competitors is by our pace of development. HOLLiAS-K is the 5th generation of Distributed Control System developed by us and released to the market. In 1993, we developed China’s first proprietary DCS to the market as our first generation system. During the past 20 years, we continuously moved ahead of the market and developed leading technologies, including China’s first proprietary large scale PLC in 2005, the earliest and till now the only domestic approved and applied nuclear power automation and control system HOLLiAS-NMS, China’s earliest subway SCADA and high-speed rail signaling system. We believe we have the capability to identify high-growth markets and quickly develop and deliver the most advanced technologies, while leveraging our strong R&D and innovative capabilities.

 

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Manufacturing

 

We design and manufacture the hardware of our products in Beijing and Hangzhou facilities, and in rare cases we outsource the production depending on special circumstances and delivery requirements. The core part of the hardware of our products is the printed circuit board. We manufacture the printed circuit boards in our SMT (Surface Mounting Technology) lines and plug-in mounting lines, and assemble them into various types of modules and then form the modules into the final products. The raw materials which we procure mainly include bare printed circuit boards from vendors based on our requirements and design considerations, and electronic components, chips, cabinets and cables among other factors. Our products are subjected to rigorous testing in our facilities prior to shipment.

 

Several subsidiaries of the Company, including Beijing Hollysys, Hangzhou Hollysys, Hollysys Intelligent, and Hollysys Electronics, have all passed GB/T 19001/ISO 9001 international quality management system certification, GB/T 24001/ISO 14001environmental management system certification, and GB/T 28001 occupational health and safety management system certification.

 

The GB/T 19001/ISO 9001 international quality management system certificate is valid for production, and technical service of industrial automatic control system equipment. The other two certificates are valid for production, technical service and related management activities of industrial automatic control system equipment.

 

Seasonality

 

Like many other companies operating in China and Southeast Asia, our businesses experience lower levels of revenues in the quarter ending on March 31 due to the Chinese New Year holiday.

 

Regulation

 

PRC. We operate a significant portion of our business in China under a legal regime that consists, at the national level, of the State Council, which is the highest authority of the executive branch of the PRC central government, and several ministries and agencies under its leadership, including: the Ministry of Agriculture and its local authorities; the Ministry of Commerce and its local authorities; SAFE and its local authorities; the State Administration of Industry and Commence and its local authorities; and the State Administration of Taxation, and the Local Taxation Bureau.  The following sets forth a summary of significant regulations or requirements that affect our business activities in China and our shareholders’ right to receive dividends and other distributions from us.

 

·Foreign Currency Regulations. We are subject to the PRC’s foreign currency regulations. The PRC government has control over RMB reserves through, among other things, direct regulation of the conversion of RMB into other foreign currencies. Although foreign currencies which are required for “current account” transactions can be bought freely at authorized Chinese banks, the proper procedural requirements prescribed by Chinese law must be met.  See Item 10 “Additional Information – D. Exchange Controls” for detailed discussion of PRC foreign exchange control rules.

 

·Taxation.  The EIT Law, as further clarified by the Implementation Rules of the EIT Law and the Notice on Implementation of Enterprise Income Tax Transition Preferential Policy under the EIT Law, applies a unified enterprise income tax, or EIT, rate at 25% to both FIEs and domestic invested enterprises. The EIT rate applicable to the enterprises established before March 16, 2007 those were eligible for preferential tax rate according to the effective tax laws and regulations will gradually transition to the uniform 25% EIT rate by January 1, 2013. In addition, certain enterprises may still benefit from a preferential tax rate of 15% under the EIT Law if they qualify as “High and New Technology Enterprises strongly supported by the state,” (“HNTE”) subject to certain general factors described therein. “Administrative Measures for Assessment of High-New Tech Enterprises,” or Measures, and “Catalogue of High/New Tech Domains Strongly Supported by the State,” or Catalogue (2008), jointly issued by the Ministry of Science and Technology and the Ministry of Finance and State Administration of Taxation set forth general guidelines regarding criteria as well as application procedures for qualification as a HNTE under the New EIT Law.  Beijing Hollysys, Hangzhou Hollysys and Hollysys Intelligent have met the qualifications for the HNTE designation, and are accordingly subject to a reduced national enterprise income tax rate of 15%. Both Beijing Hollysys and Hangzhou Hollysys’s “HNTE” certificate are effective from January 1, 2011 to December 31, 2016, and both are in the process of reapplying the qualifications of HNTE for the following 3 years from January 1, 2017 to December 31, 2019. Both are expecting to receive new HNTE certification in late 2017. While Hollysys Intelligent’s “HNTE” certificate is effective from January 1, 2013 to December 31, 2018. According to the Notification on Preferential Enterprise Income Tax of Software and Integrated Circuit Industry, Caishui [2016] No. 49, which was issued in May 2016 by the China State Administration of Taxation (“SAT”) and the Ministry of Finance (“MOF”), Beijing Hollysys and Hangzhou Hollysys satisfied the definitions of Key Software Enterprise, and applied a preferential tax rate of 10% in calendar year of 2015 and 2016.

 

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In addition to the changes to the current tax structure, under the EIT Law, an enterprise established outside of China with “de facto management bodies” within China is considered a resident enterprise and will normally be subject to an EIT of 25% on its global income. The implementing rules define the term “de facto management bodies” as “an establishment that exercises, in substance, overall management and control over the production, business, personnel, accounting, etc., of a Chinese enterprise.” If the PRC tax authorities subsequently determine that we should be classified as a resident enterprise, then our public holding company’s global income will be subject to PRC income tax of 25%. For detailed discussion of PRC tax issues related to resident enterprise status, see Item 3 “Key information—D. Risk Factors—Risks Relating to Doing Business in China—Under the New Enterprise Income Tax Law, we may be classified as a ‘resident enterprise’ of China. Such classification will likely result in unfavorable tax consequences to us and our non-PRC shareholders.”

 

·Dividend Distribution. Under PRC law, FIEs in China, may pay dividends only out of their accumulated profits, if any, determined in accordance with PRC accounting principles. In addition, FIEs in China are required to set aside at least 10% of their after-tax profit based on PRC accounting standards each year for their general reserves until the accumulative amount of such reserves reaches 50% of registered capital. These reserves are not distributable as loans, advances or cash dividends. The board of directors of a FIE has the discretion to allocate a portion of its after-tax profits to staff welfare and bonus funds, and expansion (development) funds, which, once allocated, may not be distributed to equity owners except in the event of liquidation. In addition, under the new EIT Law, effective as of January 2008, dividends from our PRC subsidiaries to us are subject to a withholding tax of 10%.

 

The foregoing summary does not purport to be complete and is qualified by reference to the relevant provisions of applicable law in the jurisdictions in which we operate. We believe that we are currently in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations relating to our business.

 

Southeast Asia. The kinds of currency regulation, taxation regimes and dividend restrictions imposed in China are not replicated in Singapore, Malaysia and other Southeast Asian markets in which we operate. Generally these markets are free-trade based economies, with no direct or indirect currency or similar operational barriers.

 

Marketing, Sales and Customer Support

 

Our marketing and sales activities are focused on the development of and addressing the growing demand for automation and control products, systems and services in China domestic market, Southeast Asia, India and the Middle East markets. We insist on building cooperative relationships with our customers, educating them about technological developments and reflecting their needs in our products and services.

 

Our sales teams consist of a complementary group of sales personnel and hardware and software engineers from a variety of disciplines to tailor products to specific customer needs. Employing a pool of skilled personnel in the early stage of a project accelerates the design and the subsequent production of a particular customized solution, typically exceeding that of our competitors. Our sales teams possess significant hands-on, industry-specific experience which permit them to do on-site process analyses, which in turn, makes the design and implementation of upgrades simpler. The result is an automation system that is more effective, efficient and reliable, which in turn leads to a truly satisfied customer.

 

Our sales force is organized into three principal groups, (i) regional sales, to provide business consulting, promote pre-sale activity and serve as customer contacts, (ii) customer relationship management, to manage relations with contracted customers and improve customer satisfaction by coordinating responses to the client’s information requests, sale of supplemental parts or components and make customer visits, and (iii) market planning, to facilitate strategic cooperation with certain specialized manufacturers, to expand the specific fields for our products.

 

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We identify and target market segments and select target sales opportunities within our markets and conduct sales opportunity studies to ensure that adequate sales resources are available. Sales quotas are assigned to all sales personnel according to annual sales plans. We classify market segments and target opportunities on national and regional levels. Segmentation of our markets helps us to determine our primary sales targets and to prepare monthly and quarterly sales forecasts. The sales team approves target projects, develops detailed sales promotion strategies and prepares reports on order forecasts, technical evaluation, sales budgeting expense, schedules and competition analysis. After the report has been approved, a marketing group is appointed, consisting of sales personnel and engineers. We employ marketing personnel to conduct market research, to analyze user requirements and to organize marketing communications.

 

Our marketing team engages in a variety of marketing activities, including:

 

·publishing internal research reports and customer newsletters;

 

·conducting seminars and conferences;

 

·conducting ongoing public relations programs; and

 

·creating and placing advertisements

 

We actively participate in technology-related conferences and demonstrate our products at trade shows or at exhibitions targeted at our existing and potential customers. We also evaluate a range of joint-marketing strategies and programs with our business partners in order to take advantage of their strategic relationships and resources. We also support our customers by offering field services such as maintenance and training services, which help customers to cut their costs and improve their operating efficiency.

 

As of June 30, 2018, we employed over 500 direct sales personnel through our subsidiaries in mainland China, Southeast Asia, the Middle East, Hong Kong and Macau

 

C.Organizational Structure

 

The following diagram illustrates our corporate structure as of the date of this annual report.  We are a holding company with no operations of our own. We conduct our operations in China mainly through our Chinese operating companies, and in Southeast Asia and the Middle East mainly through Concord and Bond Groups.

 

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(i)On November 24, 2015, the Company established Concord Electrical Contracting, Ltd. (“CECL”) to explore the market in Qatar. CCPL has a 49% direct ownership of CECL and the remaining 51% equity interest is held by a nominee shareholder. Through a series of contractual arrangements, CCPL is entitled to appoint majority of directors of CECL who have the power to direct the activities that significantly impact CECL’s economic performance. Further, CCPL is entitled to 95% of the variable returns from CECL’s operations. As a result, despite of its minority direct ownership of CECL arrangements, CCPL is considered the primary beneficiary of CECL.

 

(ii)In July 2017, Bond Corporation Pte. Ltd (“BCPL”), a wholly-owned Singapore subsidiary of the Company, and a Malaysian citizen (the “Trustee”) entered into a trust deed, under which, 49.1% of BCPL’s equity interests in Bond M & E Sdn. Bhd. (“BMJB”), a Malaysian company, which previously was a 100% subsidiary of BCPL, was transferred to the Trustee. According to the trust deed, all of the beneficial interests in BMJB belong to BCPL and the Trustee shall hold the legal title of the transferred shares on trust for and act on behalf of BCPL absolutely. Any dividend, interest and other benefits received or receivable by the Trustee will be transferred to BCPL. The Trustee shall exercise the managerial rights and voting power in a manner directed by a prior written notice from BCPL. The Trustee shall be obligated to vote in the same manner as BCPL in the absence of any written notice. In addition, an undated Form of Transfer of Securities with the transferee’s name left blank was duly executed by the Trustee and delivered to BCPL. Therefore, BCPL can transfer the 49.1% of equity interests to any party at any time without further approval by the Trustee. Accordingly, the Company believes it holds all beneficial rights, obligation and the power of the 100% equity interest in BMJB, and therefore consolidates 100% of equity interests in BMJB into its financial statements.

 

Our corporate headquarters are located at No. 2 Disheng Middle Road, Beijing Economic-Technological Development Area, Beijing, 100176, China. Our telephone number is (+86) 10 58981386. We maintain a website at http://www.Hollysys.com that contains information about our company, but that information is not a part of this annual report.

 

D.Property, Plant and Equipment

 

Since 2010, our principal executive offices have been located at No. 2 Disheng Middle Road, Beijing Economic-Technological Development Area, Beijing, 100176, China. At this location in Beijing, we have ample room for substantial expansion, as our needs require. We own the prepaid land leases to the properties at the following principal locations, each of which contains principal administrative offices, sales and marketing offices, research and development facilities, and manufacturing facilities:

 

Location   Approximate Sq. Meters
Beijing   120,000
Hangzhou   25,000
Singapore   1,200
Malaysia   3,400

 

The manufacturing facilities at the Beijing and Hangzhou locations are used for the system integration production, including hardware testing instruments, auxiliary material processing, packaging and shipping, and for self-made product integration production, including inspection and testing.

 

ITEM 4A.UNRESOLVED STAFF COMMENTS

 

There are no unresolved staff comments.

 

ITEM 5.OPERATING AND FINANCIAL REVIEW AND PROSPECTS

 

The following discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations should be read in conjunction with our consolidated financial statements and the related notes included elsewhere in this annual report on Form 20-F. This discussion may contain forward-looking statements based upon current expectations that involve risks and uncertainties. Our actual results may differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements as a result of various factors, including the risk factors and the discussion of our business set forth in other parts of this annual report on Form 20-F.

 

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Overview

 

Through our operating subsidiaries, we are one of the leading automation solutions providers in China, developing a number of core technologies and completing numerous projects utilizing a wide array of automation products. With our philosophy of sincere concern for customers and our technical innovation capabilities, we specialize in the research, development, production, sale and distribution of industrial automation for digital railway signals and information systems, e-government, motor drive transmissions and non-safety controls for nuclear power reactors.

 

The main channel through which we obtain our automation system business is the procurement bidding process. Customers propose their requirements and specifications via legally binding bid documents. Companies interested in obtaining the contract can respond with an appropriate bid.

 

We derive our revenue mainly from three operating segments including industrial automation, railway transportation and mechanical and electrical solutions. Around 86% of our total consolidated revenues derived from integrated contracts we have won through the bid process. In addition, we generate revenue from sales of spare parts and component products to customers for maintenance and replacement purposes after the completion of the integrated solution contract, and from providing maintenance and training service, after the warranty period to customers for efficiency improvement or environment protection purpose; which tends to provide a recurring revenue stream. Spare part and component sales and services rendered are not part of the integrated solutions contracts.

 

The purpose of an integrated solutions contract is to furnish an automation system that provides the customer with a total solution for the automation or process control requirement being addressed. The automation system and total solution we offer, consisting of hardware, software and services, is customized to meet the customer’s particular needs and technical specifications. None of the hardware, software and services has independent functionality, and therefore, is not sold separately to customers.

 

Order backlog of contracts presents the amount of unrealized revenue to be earned from the contracts that we have won. The following table sets forth the information regarding contracts we won during the last three fiscal years and the backlog at the dates indicated:

 

   Years Ended June 30, 
   2016   2017   2018 
Number of new contracts won during the year   2,031    2,777    3,277 
Total amount of new contracts (million)  $527.9   $476.5   $634.0 
Average price per contract  $259,916   $171,599   $193,470 

 

   Years Ended June 30, 
Backlog Situation:  2016   2017   2018 
Contracts newly entered and unfinished (million)  $284.2   $222.4   $321.6 
Contracts entered in prior years and unfinished (million)  $243.0   $301.6   $247.4 
Total amount of backlog (million)  $527.2   $524.0   $569.0 

 

Recent Development

 

In June 2018, Ningbo Hollysys Intelligent Technology Company Limited (“Ningbo Hollysys”) was established with a registered capital RMB250,000 (equivalent to $38,060) by the Company and a third party with the equity interests of 40% and 60%, respectively. Both parties should contribute the capitals in cash. As of June 30, 2018, Ningbo Hollysys had no operation, and neither shareholders made capital contributions.

 

In August 2018, the Company agreed to contribute its 100% equity interest in Hollysys Intelligent, a subsidiary, as the capital contribution of its 40% equity interest in Ningbo Hollysys. The Company completed the transfer in September 2018 and the Article of Association of Ningbo Hollysys was revised accordingly.

 

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Key Factors Affecting Our Growth, Operating Results and Financial Condition

 

Our future growth, operating results and financial condition will be affected by a number of factors including:

 

·The ability in developing and acquiring new products and systems in order to improve competitiveness, which can increase both sales revenue and margins. The success of our business depends in great measure on our ability to keep pace with or even lead changes that occur in our industry.

 

·The success in expanding our business in targeted emerging markets and overseas markets, which may require us to overcome domestic competition and trade barriers.

 

·Our ability to retain our existing customers and to obtain additional business opportunities. Since we do not have long-term purchase commitments from customers, our customers can shift to other competitors for future projects.  It is important to maintain our customer base in order to sustain and expand our business.

 

·The success of our business also depends on securing a steady stream of new customers.  In order for our business to continue to succeed and grow, it is vital to secure contracts with new customers on a regular basis.

 

·The ability to secure adequate engineering resources and relatively low cost engineering staff can increase our profitability and potential business prospects. One of the competitive advantages that we enjoy is the access to lower cost engineering staff as compared to those of our Western and Japan-based competitors. The plentiful supply of affordable engineering talent in China is a key element of our overall business strategy.

 

·Further improvement in product design and maintaining high standard of quality control, which can reduce or avoid product defects. Any product defects will result in additional costs and cause damage to our business reputation.

 

·The ability to secure and protect our intellectual property rights is critical, as our business is based on a number of proprietary products and systems, and we strive to strengthen and differentiate our product portfolio by developing new and innovative products and product improvements.

 

·The success in penetrating into the railway, conventional and nuclear power market sectors can develop revenue streams and improve margins. In addition to the traditional industrial automation business, our plan for future growth includes an increasing emphasis on rail control systems, power generation control systems and mechanical and electrical solutions both in China and internationally.

 

·The ability to obtain greater financial resources to match or even exceed our major competitors, in order to compete effectively with them, and to weather any extended weaknesses in the automation and control market.

 

·The continued growth in the Chinese and Southeast Asia industry in general.  This continued growth will create more business opportunities for us, because industrial companies in Asia are our principal source of revenues.

 

·The ability to maintain key personnel and senior management, who will have significant impact and contribution to our future business. The ability to attract and retain additional qualified management, technical, sales and marketing personnel will be vital.

 

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·The continuation of the preferential tax treatment and subsidies currently available to our PRC subsidiaries will be critical to our future operating results. If governmental subsidies were reduced or eliminated, our after-tax income would be adversely affected.

 

·The exchange rate fluctuation of RMB and SGD against US dollars will result in future translation gain or loss as most of our assets are denominated in RMB and SGD. In addition, some of our raw materials, components and major equipment are imported from overseas. In the event that the RMB and SGD appreciate against other foreign currencies, our costs will decrease and our profitability will increase. However, the impact will be the other way around if RMB and SGD depreciate against other foreign currencies.

 

Critical Accounting Policies

 

Revenue recognition

 

Integrated solutions contracts

 

Revenues generated from designing, building, and delivering customized integrated industrial automation systems are recognized over the contractual terms based on the percentage of completion method. The contracts for designing, building, and delivering customized integrated industrial automation systems are legally enforceable and binding agreements between the Company and customers. The duration of contracts depends on the contract size and ranges from 6 months to 5 years excluding the warranty period. The majority of the contract duration is longer than one year.

 

Revenue generated from mechanical and electrical solution contracts for the construction or renovation of buildings, rail or infrastructure facilities are also recognized over the contractual terms based on the percentage of completion method. The contracts for mechanical and electrical solution are legally enforceable and binding agreements between the Company and customers. The duration of contracts depends on the contract size and the complexity of the construction work and ranges from 6 months to 3 years excluding the warranty period. The majority of the contract duration is longer than one year.

 

In accordance with ASC 605-35, Revenue Recognition - Construction-Type and Production-Type Contracts (“ASC 605-35”), recognition is based on an estimate of the income earned to date, less income recognized in earlier periods. Extent of progress toward completion is measured using the cost-to-cost method where the progress (the percentage complete) is determined by dividing costs incurred to date by the total amount of costs expected to be incurred for the integrated solutions contract. Revisions in the estimated total costs of integrated solutions contracts are made in the period in which the circumstances requiring the revision become known. Provisions, if any, are made in the period when anticipated losses become evident on uncompleted contracts.

 

The Company reviews and updates the estimated total costs of integrated solutions contracts at least annually. The Company accounts for revisions to contract revenue and estimated total costs of integrated solution contracts, including the impact due to approved change orders, in the period in which the facts that cause the revision become known as changes in estimates. Unapproved change orders are considered claims. Claims are recognized only when it has been awarded by customers. During the years ended June 30, 2016, 2017 and 2018, the Company did not recognize any revenue related to claims. Excluding the impact of change orders, if the estimated total costs of integrated solution contracts, which were revised during the years ended June 30, 2016, 2017 and 2018, had been used as a basis of recognition of integrated contract revenue since the contract commencement, net income for the years ended June 30, 2016, 2017 and 2018 would have been decreased by $30,270, $12,062, and $10,466, respectively; basic net income per share for years ended June 30, 2016, 2017 and 2018 would have been decreased by $0.51, $0.20, and $0.17, respectively; and diluted net income per share for the years ended June 30, 2016, 2017 and 2018, would have decreased by $0.50, $0.20, and $0.17, respectively. Revisions to the estimated total costs for the years ended June 30, 2016, 2017 and 2018 were made in the ordinary course of business.

 

The Company combines a group of contracts as one project if they are closely related and are, in substance, parts of a single project with an overall profit margin. The Company segments a contract into several projects, when they are of different business substance, for example, with different business negotiation, solutions, implementation plans and margins.

 

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Revenue in excess of billings on the contracts is recorded as costs and estimated earnings in excess of billings. Billings in excess of revenues recognized on the contracts are recorded as deferred revenue until the above revenue recognition criteria are met.

 

The Company generally recognizes 100% of the contractual revenue when the customer acceptance has been obtained and no further major costs are estimated to be incurred, and normally this is also when the warranty period commences. Revenues are presented net of taxes collected on behalf of the government.

 

Product sales

 

Revenue generated from sales of products is recognized when the following four revenue recognition criteria are met: (i) persuasive evidence of an arrangement exists, (ii) delivery has occurred, (iii) the selling price is fixed or determinable, and (iv) collectability is reasonably assured.

 

Service rendered

 

The Company has in recent years extended its service offerings as described below. The Company mainly provides two types of services:

 

Revenue from one-off services: the Company provides different types of one-off services, which are generally completed on customers’ site. Revenue is recognized when the Company has completed all the respective services described in the contracts, there is persuasive evidence of an arrangement, the fee is fixed or determinable and collection is reasonably assured.

  

Revenue from services covering a period of time: the Company also separately sells extended warranties to their integrated solution customers for a fixed period. Such arrangements are negotiated separately from the corresponding integrated solution system and are usually entered into upon the expiration of the warranty period attached to the integrated solution contract. During the extended warranty period, the Company is responsible for addressing issues related to the system. Part replacement is not covered in such services. The Company recognizes revenue on a pro-rata basis over the contractual term.

 

Allowance for doubtful accounts

 

The carrying value of the Company’s accounts receivable and costs and estimated earnings in excess of billings, net of the allowance for doubtful accounts, represents their estimated net realizable value. An allowance for doubtful accounts is recognized when it’s probable that the Company will not collect the amount and is written off in the period when deemed uncollectible. The Company periodically reviews the status of contracts and decides how much of an allowance for doubtful accounts should be made based on factors surrounding the credit risk of customers and historical experience. The Company does not require collateral from its customers and does not charge interest for late payments by its customers.

 

Warranties

 

Warranties represent a major term under an integrated contract, which will last, in general, for one to three years or otherwise specified in the terms of the contract. The Company accrues warranty liabilities under an integrated contract as a percentage of revenue recognized, which is derived from its historical experience, in order to recognize the warranty cost for an integrated contract throughout the contract period.

 

Goodwill

 

Goodwill represents the excess of the purchase price over the estimated fair value of net tangible and identifiable intangible assets acquired. The Company assesses goodwill for impairment in accordance with ASC subtopic 350-20 (“ASC 350-20”), Intangibles – Goodwill and Other, which requires that goodwill is not amortized but to be tested for impairment at the reporting unit level at least annually and more frequently upon the occurrence of certain events, as defined by ASC 350-20.

 

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The Company’s goodwill outstanding at June 30, 2018 was related to the acquisitions of Concord Group, Bond Group, and Beijing Hollysys Industrial Software Company Ltd (“Hollysys Industrial Software”), which was 100% acquired by a subsidiary of the Company in July 2017 with a cash consideration of approximately $2,380.

 

The Company has the option to assess qualitative factors first to determine whether it is necessary to perform the two-step test in accordance with ASC 350-20. If the Company believes, as a result of the qualitative assessment, that it is more-likely-than-not that the fair value of the reporting unit is less than its carrying amount, the two-step quantitative impairment test described above is required. Otherwise, no further testing is required. In the qualitative assessment, the Company considers primary factors such as industry and market considerations, overall financial performance of the reporting unit, and other specific information related to the operations. In performing the two-step quantitative impairment test, the first step compares the carrying amount of the reporting unit to the fair value of the reporting unit based on either quoted market prices of the ordinary shares or estimated fair value using a combination of the income approach and the market approach. If the fair value of the reporting unit exceeds the carrying value of the reporting unit, goodwill is not impaired and the Company is not required to perform further testing. If the carrying value of the reporting unit exceeds the fair value of the reporting unit, then the Company must perform the second step of the impairment test in order to determine the implied fair value of the reporting unit’s goodwill. The fair value of the reporting unit is allocated to its assets and liabilities in a manner similar to a purchase price allocation in order to determine the implied fair value of the reporting unit goodwill. If the carrying amount of the goodwill is greater than its implied fair value, the excess is recognized as an impairment loss.

 

The Company elected to assess goodwill for impairment using the two-step process for Concord Group for the years ended June 30, 2017 and 2018, with assistances from a third-party appraiser. Concord Group’s management judgment is involved in determining these estimates and assumptions, and actual results may differ from those used in valuations. Changes in these estimates and assumptions could materially affect the determination of fair value for each reporting unit which could trigger future impairment. The judgment in estimating the fair value of reporting units includes forecasts of future cash flows, which are based on management’s best estimate of future revenue, gross profit, operating expenses growth rates, future capital expenditure and working capital level, as well as discount rate determined by Weighted Average Cost of Capital approach and the selection of comparable companies operating in similar businesses. The Company also reviewed marketplace and/or historical data to assess the reasonableness of assumptions such as discount rate and working capital level.

 

The carrying amount of Concord Group exceeded its fair value as of June 30, 2017, and a goodwill impairment charge of $11,211 was recorded in the statement of comprehensive income for the year ended June 30, 2017 based on the second step testing result.

 

The fair value of Concord Group exceeded its carrying amount (net of accumulated impairment charges) as of June 30, 2018 based on the first step testing result, and the Company concluded no additional goodwill impairment charge was needed for the year ended June 30, 2018.

 

There are uncertainties surrounding the amount and timing of future expected cash flows as they may be impacted by negative events such as a slowdown in the mechanical and electrical engineering sector, deteriorating economic conditions in the geographical areas Concord Group operates in, political, economic and social uncertainties in the Middle East, increasing competitive pressures and fewer than expected mechanical and electrical solution contracts awarded to Concord Group. These events can negatively impact demand for Concord Group’s services and result in actual future cash flows being less than forecasted or delays in the timing of when those cash flows are expected to be realized. Further, the timing of when actual future cash flows are received could differ from the Company’s estimates, which are based on historical trends and does not factor in unexpected delays in project commencement or execution.

 

The Company also performed qualitative assessments with respect to Bond Group and Hollysys Industrial Software, to determine if it is more likely than not that the fair values of Bond Group and Hollysys Industrial Software are less than their carrying amounts. By identifying the most relevant drivers of fair value and significant events, and weighing the identified factors, the Company concluded that there was no impairment loss on goodwill related to Bond Group as of June 30, 2017 and 2018, or related to Hollysys Industrial Software as of June 30, 2018.

 

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Impairment of long-lived assets other than goodwill

 

The Company evaluates its long-lived assets or asset group including acquired intangibles with finite lives for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances (such as a significant adverse change to market conditions that will impact the future use of the assets) indicate that the carrying amount of a group of long-lived assets may not be fully recoverable. When these events occur, the Company evaluates the impairment by comparing the carrying amount of the assets to future undiscounted cash flows expected to result from the use of the assets and their eventual disposition. If the sum of the expected undiscounted cash flows is less than the carrying amount of the assets, the Company recognizes an impairment loss based on the excess of the carrying amount of the asset group over its fair value, generally based upon discounted cash flows or quoted market prices.

 

Income taxes

 

The Company follows the liability method of accounting for income taxes. Under this method, deferred tax assets and liabilities are determined based on the differences between the financial reporting and tax bases of assets and liabilities using enacted tax rates that will be in effect in the period in which the differences are expected to reverse. The Company records a valuation allowance to offset deferred tax assets if based on the weight of available evidence, it is more-likely-than-not that some portion, or all, of the deferred tax assets will not be realized. The effect on deferred taxes of a change in tax rate is recognized in tax expense in the period that includes the enactment date of the change in tax rate. The Company adopted ASU 2015-17 on July 1, 2017 on a prospective basis. As a result, current portion of deferred income tax liabilities and assets have been reclassified to noncurrent liabilities and assets. Prior periods were not retrospectively adjusted and all future adjustments will be reported as noncurrent.

 

The Company adopted ASC 740, Income Taxes (“ASC 740”), which clarifies the accounting and disclosure for uncertainty in income taxes. Interests and penalties arising from underpayment of income taxes shall be computed in accordance with the related tax laws. The amount of interest expense is computed by applying the applicable statutory rate of interest to the difference between the tax position recognized and the amount previously taken or expected to be taken in a tax return. Interests and penalties recognized in accordance with ASC 740 are classified in the financial statements as a component of income tax expense. In accordance with the provisions of ASC 740, the Company recognizes in its financial statements the impact of a tax position if a tax return position or future tax position is “more likely than not” to prevail based on the facts and technical merits of the position. Tax positions that meet the “more likely than not” recognition threshold are measured at the largest amount of tax benefit that has a greater than fifty percent likelihood of being realized upon settlement. The Company’s estimated liability for unrecognized tax positions which is included in the accrued liabilities is periodically assessed for adequacy and may be affected by changing interpretations of laws, rulings by tax authorities, changes and/or developments with respect to tax audits, and expiration of the statute of limitations. The outcome for a particular audit cannot be determined with certainty prior to the conclusion of the audit and, in some cases, appeal or litigation process. The actual benefits ultimately realized may differ from the Company’s estimates. As each audit is concluded, adjustments, if any, are recorded in the Company’s financial statements. Additionally, in future periods, changes in facts, circumstances, and new information may require the Company to adjust the recognition and measurement estimates with regard to individual tax positions. Changes in recognition and measurement estimates are recognized in the period in which the changes occur.

 

Share-based compensation

 

The Company accounts for share-based compensation in accordance with ASC 718, Compensation-Stock Compensation (“ASC 718”). The Company recognizes compensation cost for an award with only service conditions that has a graded vesting schedule on a straight-line basis over the requisite service period for the entire award. The compensation cost for each vesting tranche in an award subject to performance vesting is recognized ratably from the service inception date to the vesting date for each tranche. To the extent the required service and performance conditions are not met resulting in the forfeiture of the share-based awards, previously recognized compensation expense relating to those awards are reversed. ASC 718 requires forfeitures to be estimated at the time of grant and revised, if necessary, in a subsequent period if actual forfeitures differ from initial estimates.

 

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For share-based awards that are subject to performance-based vesting conditions in addition to time-based vesting, the Company recognizes the estimated grant-date fair value of performance-based awards, net of estimated forfeitures, as share-based compensation expense over the vesting period based upon the Company’s determination of whether it is probable that the performance-based criteria will be achieved. At each reporting period, the Company reassesses the probability of achieving the performance-based criteria. Determining whether the performance-based criteria will be achieved involves judgment, and the estimate of share-based compensation expense may be revised periodically based on changes in the probability of achieving the performance-based criteria. Revisions are reflected in the period in which the estimate is changed. If the performance-based criteria are not met, no share-based compensation expense is recognized, and, to the extent share-based compensation expense was previously recognized, such share-based compensation expense is reversed.

 

Recent accounting pronouncements

 

In May 2014, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (“FASB”) issued ASU 2014-09, Revenue from Contracts with Customers, (“ASU 2014-09”). ASU 2014-09 provides a single comprehensive model for entities to use in accounting for revenue arising from contracts with customers and supersedes most current revenue recognition guidance, including industry-specific guidance. ASU 2014-09 will require an entity to recognize revenue when it transfers promised goods or services to customers in an amount that reflects the consideration to which the entity expects to be entitled in exchange for those goods or services. This update creates a five-step model that requires entities to exercise judgment when considering the terms of the contract(s) which include (i) identifying the contract(s) with the customer, (ii) identifying the separate performance obligations in the contract, (iii) determining the transaction price, (iv) allocating the transaction price to the separate performance obligations, and (v) recognizing revenue when each performance obligation is satisfied. ASU 2014-09 will be effective for the Company’s fiscal year beginning July 1, 2018 and subsequent interim periods. The Company has the option to apply the provisions of ASU 2014-09 either retrospectively to each prior reporting period presented or retrospectively with the cumulative effect of applying this ASU recognized at the date of initial application.

 

Subsequent to the issuance of ASU 2014-09, the FASB has issued several ASUs such as ASU 2016-08, Revenue from Contracts with Customers (Topic 606): Principal versus Agent Considerations (Reporting Revenue Gross versus Net), ASU 2016-10, Revenue from Contracts with Customers (Topic 606): Identifying Performance Obligations and Licensing, and ASU 2016-12, Revenue from Contracts with Customers (Topic 606): Narrow-Scope Improvements and Practical Expedients among others. These ASUs will have the same effective date and transition requirements as ASU 2014-09. All guidance is collectively referred to as Accounting Standard Codification (“ASC”) 606.

 

The Company will adopt the new standard on July 1, 2018 using the modified retrospective approach, which requires the recognition of a cumulative-effect adjustment to retained earnings as of the date of adoption, and will apply the adoption only to contracts not completed as of July 1, 2018. As part of the implementation of ASC 606, the Company is performing an assessment, including identifying revenue streams within the scope of ASC 606, analyzing contracts and reviewing potential changes to its existing revenue recognition accounting policies. The Company has not yet completed its assessment.

 

A significant portion of our contracts is related to the provision of integrated solution services, the revenues from which is currently recognized under the percentage of completion method using the cost-to-cost measurement. To date, our assessment of such contracts with customers under the new revenue standard continues supports the recognition of revenue over time using the current method. As such, we expect to retain the same accounting treatment used to recognize revenue under current standard.

 

The adoption of the new revenue standard will not affect the recognition for product sales, which are currently recognized upon the transfer to control, typically upon delivery when all other revenue recognition criteria are met.

 

The Company’s one-off service revenues are currently recognized based on the completed contract method, when the Company has completed all the respective service deliverables in the contracts. Under the new standard, the Company expects to recognize revenue primarily on an “over time” basis for such contracts by using cost inputs to measure the progress towards the completion of the performance obligation as the customer simultaneously receives and consumes the services or because of continuous transfer of control of asset to the customer as it’s created or enhanced. Therefore, the impact from adoption will primarily be associated with certain service contracts outstanding at June 30, 2018 accounted for under the completed contract method, which will be generally recognized earlier under this new guidance and result in a cumulative effect adjustment to retained earnings as of July 1, 2018.

 

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Currently, revenues are presented net of taxes collected on behalf of the government. The Company elects to retain the same accounting treatment under the new standard. In addition, the Company also expects that that adoption of the new revenue standard will significantly expand its financial statement disclosures requirement.

 

In January 2016, the FASB issued ASU No. 2016-01, Financial Instruments—Overall (Subtopic 825-10) (“ASU 2016-01”). The amendments require all equity investments to be measured at fair value with changes in the fair value recognized through net income (other than those accounted for under equity method of accounting or those that result in consolidation of the investee). The amendments also require an entity to present separately in other comprehensive income the portion of the total change in the fair value of a liability resulting from a change in the instruments-specific credit risk when the entity has elected to measure the liability at fair value in accordance with the fair value option for financial instruments. This updated guidance is effective for the annual period beginning after December 15, 2017, including interim periods within the year. Early adoption is permitted. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of adopting this standard on its consolidated financial statements.

 

In February 2016, the FASB issued ASU No. 2016-02 (“ASU 2016-02”), Leases. ASU 2016-02 specifies the accounting for leases. For operating leases, ASU 2016-02 requires a lessee to recognize a right-of-use asset and a lease liability, initially measured at the present value of the lease payments, in its balance sheet. The standard also requires a lessee to recognize a single lease cost, calculated so that the cost of the lease is allocated over the lease term, on a generally straight-line basis. ASU 2016-02 is effective for public companies for annual reporting periods, and interim periods within those years beginning after December 15, 2018. Early adoption is permitted. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of adopting this standard on its consolidated financial statements.

 

In August 2016, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) issued Accounting Standards Update (ASU) 2016-15, Statement of Cash Flows (Topic 230): Classification of Certain Cash Receipts and Cash Payments. This new standard will make eight targeted changes to how cash receipts and cash payments are presented and classified in the statement of cash flows. The new standard is effective for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2017, which means that it will be effective for the Company in the first quarter of the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2018. The new standard will require adoption on a retrospective basis unless it is impracticable to apply, in which case the Company would be required to apply the amendments prospectively as of the earliest date practicable. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of the pending adoption of ASU 2016-15 on its consolidated financial statements.

 

In October 2016, the FASB issued ASU No. 2016-16, Income Taxes (Topic 740): Intra-Entity Transfers of Assets Other Than Inventory. Under the new standard, the selling (transferring) entity is required to recognize a current tax expense or benefit upon transfer of the asset. Similarly, the purchasing (receiving) entity is required to recognize a deferred tax asset or liability, as well as the related deferred tax benefit or expense, upon purchase or receipt of the asset. This pronouncement is effective for reporting periods beginning after December 15, 2017, with early adoption permitted. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of adopting this standard on its consolidated financial statements.

 

In November 2016, the FASB issued ASU 2016-18, Statement of Cash Flows (Topic 230): Restricted Cash (a consensus of the FASB Emerging Issues Task Force) (“ASU2016-18”). ASU 2016-18 requires amounts generally described as restricted cash and restricted cash equivalents to be included with cash and cash equivalents when reconciling the total beginning and ending amounts for the periods shown on the statement of cash flows. The guidance is effective for public companies for annual periods beginning after December 15, 2017, and interim periods within those annual periods. Early adoption is permitted, including adoption in an interim period. The guidance should be applied using a retrospective transition method for each period presented. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of adopting this standard on its consolidated financial statements.

 

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In January 2017, the FASB issued ASU No. 2017-01, Business Combinations (Topic 805): Clarifying Definition of a Business ("ASU 2017-01"). ASU 2017-01 clarifies the framework for determining whether an integrated set of assets and activities meets the definition of a business. The revised framework establishes a screen for determining whether an integrated set of assets and activities is a business and narrows the definition of a business, which is expected to result in fewer transactions being accounted for as business combinations. Acquisitions of integrated sets of assets and activities that do not meet the definition of a business are accounted for as asset acquisitions. This update is effective for fiscal years, and for interim periods within those fiscal years, beginning after December 15, 2017, with early adoption permitted for transactions that have not been reported in previously issued (or available to be issued) financial statements. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of adopting this standard on its consolidated financial statements.

 

In January 2017, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Update No. 2017-04(“ASU 2017-04”), Intangibles – Goodwill and Other (Topic 350): Simplifying the Test for Goodwill Impairment. ASU 2017-04 eliminates the requirement to calculate the implied fair value of goodwill to measure a goodwill impairment charge. Instead, entities will record an impairment charge based on the excess of a reporting unit’s carrying amount over its fair value. This standard is effective for public business entities in the first quarter of 2020. Early adoption is permitted. The Company is currently evaluating the effect that this guidance will have on our consolidated financial statements and related disclosures.

 

In May 2017, the FASB issued ASU No. 2017-09, Compensation – Stock Compensation: Scope of Modification Accounting. The guidance clarifies when changes to the terms or conditions of a share-based payment award must be accounted for as modifications. Entities will apply the modification accounting guidance if the value, vesting conditions or classification of the award changes. This guidance is effective for annual periods, including interim periods within those annual periods, beginning after December 15, 2017. Early adoption is permitted. The Company is currently evaluating the effect that this guidance will have on our consolidated financial statements and related disclosures.

 

A.Operating Results

 

The following are some financial highlights for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018:

 

·Total assets increased by approximately $151.8 million, from approximately $1,058.3 million as of June 30, 2017, to approximately $1,210.1 million as of June 30, 2018. The increase was mainly due to an increase of approximately $68.1 million in cash and cash equivalents, approximately $43.2 million in time deposits with maturities over three months and approximately $28.6 million in accounts receivable.

 

·Cash and cash equivalents increased by approximately $68.1 million, from approximately $197.6 million as of June 30, 2017, to approximately $265.7 million as of June 30, 2018. The increase was mainly due to $125.2 million cash generated from operating activities, offset by $50.0 million net cash used in investing activities.

 

·Accounts receivable at June 30, 2018 were approximately $275.2 million, an increase of approximately $28.6 million, or 11.6%, compared to approximately $246.6 million at June 30, 2017. The increase was mainly due to our increased revenues.

 

·Cost and estimated earnings in excess of billings as of June 30, 2018, were approximately $161.0 million compared to approximately $162.1 million as of June 30, 2017, representing a decrease of approximately $1.1 million, or 0.7%.

 

·Inventory increased by approximately $12.4 million, or 27.2%, from approximately $45.7 million as of June 30, 2017, to approximately $58.1 million as of June 30, 2018. The increase was mainly due to our increased revenues.

 

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·Property, plant and equipment decreased by approximately $0.3 million, from approximately $80.5 million as of June 30, 2017, to approximately $80.2 million as of June 30, 2018.

 

·Investments in equity investees increased by approximately $6.2 million, or 13.0%, from $47.2 million as of June 30, 2017, to approximately $53.4 million as of June 30, 2018. The increase was mainly due to our increased investing activities.

 

·Total liabilities increased by approximately $33.1 million or 9.9% from approximately $334.7 million at June 30, 2017, to approximately $367.8 million as of June 30, 2018. The increase in liabilities was mainly due to an increase of approximately $30.3 million in deferred revenue.

 

·Short-term bank loans decreased by approximately $5.2 million, from approximately $8.1 million at June 30, 2017, to $2.9 million at June 30, 2018.

 

·Accounts payable increased by approximately $6.8million, or 5.5% from approximately $122.7 million at June 30, 2017, to $129.5 million at June 30, 2018, mainly due to our increased inventory.

 

·Deferred revenue increased by approximately $30.3 million, or 28.2%, from approximately $107.4 million at June 30, 2017, to approximately $137.7 million at June 30, 2018. The deferred revenue was accounted for based on the difference between progress billings and percentages of completion. Different contracts have different billing arrangements, and consequently result in different deferred revenue. The higher or lower balance of deferred revenue as of the balance sheet date was due to the different contracts mix with different billing arrangements.

 

·Deferred tax assets were $8.3 million as of June 30, 2018. Based on the Company’s historical operating results and order backlog, the Company believes that it is more than likely that the deferred tax assets net of valuation allowance would be realized.

 

Comparison of Fiscal Years Ended June 30, 2018 and 2017

 

Revenues: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, total revenues amounted to approximately $540.8 million, an increase of approximately $108.9 million, compared to approximately $431.9 million for the prior fiscal year, representing an increase of 25.2%.

 

Integrated contract revenue accounted for approximately $466.5 million of total revenues, an increase of approximately $81.0 million or 21.0%, compared to approximately $385.5 million for the prior fiscal year. The increase in integrated revenues was mainly composed of an increase of approximately $42.3 million or 31.0% in industrial automation, an increase of approximately $21.8 million or 21.1% in electrical solutions and an increase of approximately $16.9 million or 11.6% in rail transportation projects.

 

Approximately $40.2 million of total revenues was generated from product sales, an increase of approximately $7.5 million, or 22.9% compared to approximately $32.7 million in product sales revenue for the prior year.

 

Approximately $34.1 million of total revenue was generated from service rendered, an increase of $20.3 million or 147.1% compared to $13.8 million of last year.

 

The Company’s total revenue by segments was as follows:

 

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(In USD millions)
   Fiscal year ended June 30, 
   2017   2018 
   $   % to Total Revenue   $   % to Total Revenue 
Industrial Automation   172.7    39.9%   224.8    41.6%
Rail Transportation   155.7    36.1%   190.6    35.2%
Mechanical and Electrical Solution   103.5    24.0%   125.4    23.2%
Total   431.9    100.0%   540.8    100.0%

 

Order Backlog: An important measure of the stability and growth of the Company’s business is the size of its order backlog, which represents the total amount of unrecognized contract revenue associated with existing contracts. Our order backlog as of June 30, 2018 amounted to approximately $569.0 million, representing an increase of approximately $45.0 million, or 8.6%, compared to approximately $524.0 million as of June 30, 2017.

 

Of the total order backlog as of June 30, 2018, the unrecognized revenue associated with new contracts signed in the fiscal year 2018 was approximately $321.6 million and the amount brought forward from prior periods was approximately $247.4 million, comparing to the total backlog as of June 30, 2017 of approximately $222.4 million from new contracts signed in fiscal year 2017, and approximately $301.6 million from contracts carried forward from prior year.

 

Cost of revenues: Mirroring the categories of revenues, the cost of revenues can also be divided into three components including cost of integrated contracts, cost of products sold and cost of service rendered. For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, the total cost of revenues amounted to approximately $334.9 million, an increase of approximately $43.4 million, or 14.9%, compared to approximately $291.5 million for the prior fiscal year. The increase was due to an approximate $36.7 million increase in the cost of integrated contracts, and an increase of approximately $5.9 million in the cost of service.

 

The cost of integrated contract revenue consists primarily of three components: cost of equipment and materials, labor costs and other manufacturing expenses including but not limited to detecting expense, technology service fee, all of which incurred during the designing, building and delivering customized automation solutions process to customers. For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, the total cost of integrated contracts was approximately $314.2 million, compared to approximately $277.5 million for the prior fiscal year, representing an increase of approximately $36.7 million, or 13.2%.  The increase was primarily due to an increase of approximately $25.8 million in cost of equipment and materials, an increase of approximately $7.2 million in other manufacturing expenses, and an increase of approximately $3.7 million in labor cost. Of the total cost of integrated contract revenue for the fiscal year 2018, cost of equipment and materials accounted for approximately $187.2 million, compared to approximately $161.4 million for the prior fiscal year; labor cost accounted for approximately $82.1 million, compared to approximately $78.4 million for the prior fiscal year; and other manufacturing expenses accounted for approximately $44.9 million, compared to approximately $37.6 million for the prior fiscal year. Of the total integrated contract revenue for the fiscal year 2018, cost of equipment and materials accounted for 40.1%, compared to 41.9% for the prior fiscal year; labor cost accounted for 17.6%, compared to 20.3% for the prior fiscal year; and other manufacturing expenses accounted for 9.6%, compared to 9.8% for the prior fiscal year. The cost components of integrated contracts were determined and varied according to requirements of different customers.

 

Sales of products mainly represent sales of spare parts (either company manufactured or purchased from outside vendors) to customers for maintenance and replacement purposes. Given the fact that the products purchased from outside vendors have different functions and capabilities from our self-made products, we decide whether to purchase or manufacture the necessary products based on the needs and preferences of different customers while considering the efficiency factor. Therefore, as a percentage of the cost of products sold, the self-made products and purchased products have varied significantly from time to time. The cost of products sold for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018 was approximately $10.8 million, an increase of approximately $0.8 million, compared to approximately $10.0 million for the prior fiscal year.

 

As for the cost of the service revenue, our employees spend time and incur expenses while they are with the customers. From time to time, materials costs related to the service are incurred, especially for providing extended warranty services. The cost of service revenue for fiscal year ended June 30, 2018 was approximately $9.9 million, an increase of approximately $5.9 million, compared to approximately $4.0 million for the prior fiscal year.

 

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Gross margin: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, as a percentage of total revenues, the overall gross margin was 38.1%, compared to 32.5% for the prior fiscal year. The gross margin for integrated contracts was 32.6% for the year ended June 30, 2018, compared to 28.0% for the prior year. The increase in gross margin for integrated contracts was mainly due to our different sales mix during the fiscal year 2018. The gross margin for products sold was 73.2% for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, compared to 69.5% for the prior fiscal year. The gross margin for service provided was 71.0% for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, compared to 70.8% for the prior fiscal year.

 

Selling expenses: Selling expenses mainly consist of compensation, traveling and administrative expenses related to marketing, sales and promotion activities incurred by the Company’s marketing departments. Selling expenses were approximately $27.2 million for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, an increase of 11.2%, or approximately $2.8 million, compared to approximately $24.4 million for the prior fiscal year. As a percentage of total revenues, selling expenses accounted for 5.0% and 5.7% for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively.

 

General and administrative expenses: General and administrative expenses mainly include compensation, traveling and other administrative expenses of non-sales-related departments, such as the finance department, information systems department and human resources department. General and administrative expenses amounted to approximately $46.3 million for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, representing an increase of approximately $2.0 million, or 4.5%, compared to approximately $44.3 million for the prior fiscal year. As a percentage of total revenues, general and administrative expenses were 8.6% and 10.3% for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively.

 

Research and development expenses: Research and development expenses represent mostly employee compensation, materials consumed and experiment expenses related to specific new product research and development, as well as any expenses incurred for basic research on advanced technologies. For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, research and development expenses were approximately $36.6 million, representing an increase of approximately $6.5 million, or 21.6%, compared to approximately $30.1 million for the prior fiscal year. As a percentage of total revenues, research and development expenses were 6.8% and 7.0% for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively.

 

VAT refunds and government subsidies: The state tax bureaus in China provide refunds out of the value added tax (“VAT”) they collect in order to encourage the research and development efforts made by certain qualified enterprises.  Some of our subsidiaries in China received such refunds. All VAT refunds, that have no further conditions to be met, are recognized in the statements of comprehensive income when cash or approval from the tax bureaus is received. For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, VAT refunds were approximately $19.7 million, compared to approximately $16.9 million for the prior fiscal year, increasing by approximately $2.8 million, or 16.6%. As a percentage of total revenues, VAT refunds were 3.6% and 3.9% for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively.

 

The local governments in China also provide financial subsidies to encourage research and development efforts made by certain qualified enterprises. Some of our subsidiaries received such subsidies. For the government subsidies that have no further conditions to be met, the funds received are recognized in the statements of comprehensive income; for the subsidies that have certain operating conditions yet to be met, the fund received are recorded as liabilities and will be released to income when the conditions are met. Subsidy income from the government amounted to approximately $4.8 million and $12.9 million for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively, a decrease of approximately $8.1 million, or 62.8%.

 

Income from operations: Income from operations increased by approximately $59.9 million, from approximately $60.3 million for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017 to approximately $120.2 million for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018. The increase was mainly due to the increase of $65.4 million in the gross profit.

 

Interest income: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, interest income increased by approximately $3.6 million, or 97.3% from approximately $3.7 million for the prior year, to approximately $7.3 million for the current period. As a percentage of total revenue, interest income accounted for 1.4% and 0.9% for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively. The interest income was mainly earned from time deposits with maturities over three months and cash and cash equivalents.

 

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Interest expenses: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, interest expenses decreased by approximately $0.2 million, or 22.2% from approximately $0.9 million for the prior year, to approximately $0.7 million for the current period. As a percentage of total revenue, interest expenses accounted for 0.1% and 0.2% for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively. The interest expenses were incurred by the short-term and long-term loan/bond we had.

 

Other income (expenses), net: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, the other income (expenses), net increased by approximately $2.6 million from approximately $1.7 million for the prior year, to approximately $4.3 million for the current period. The increase was mainly due to the consideration related to the acquisition of Beijing Hollysys Digital Technology Co., Ltd (“Digital Technology”).

 

Income tax expenses: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, the Company’s income tax expense was approximately $22.2 million for financial reporting purposes, an increase of approximately $7.8 million, as compared to $14.4 million for the prior year.  The effective tax rate for the current year is 17.1%, as compared to 17.3% for the prior year

 

Net income attributable to non-controlling interest: The non-controlling interests of the Company include non-controlling shareholders’ interests in each subsidiary. For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, the non-controlling interest was the ownership interest of 5% in CECL. The net income attributable to non-controlling interest for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018 was approximately $0.3 million, an increase of approximately $0.3 million, from approximately nil for the prior year. There is no other non-controlling interests except for 5% in CECL.

 

Net income and earnings per share attributable to Hollysys: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, net income attributable to Hollysys amounted to approximately $107.2 million, representing an increase of approximately $38.3 million, as compared to approximately $68.9 million for the prior year. The basic and diluted earnings per share were $1.77 and $1.75 for the year ended June 30, 2018, as compared to $1.15 and $1.14 for the prior year, representing a decrease of $0.62 and $0.61, respectively. The increase was primarily due to the higher net income attributable to Hollysys compared to fiscal 2017.

 

Comparison of Fiscal Years Ended June 30, 2017 and 2016

 

Revenues: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, total revenues amounted to approximately $431.9 million, a decrease of approximately $112.4 million, compared to approximately $544.3 million for the prior fiscal year, representing a decrease of 20.6%. In July 2016, the company’s interests in Hollycon were diluted from 51.0% to 30.0% and the Company lost the control of Hollycon. As a result, Hollycon’s financials were not included in the Company’s consolidated financials since July 2016. If Hollycon’s revenue were excluded from the comparable figure for the prior fiscal year, the total revenues for fiscal year 2017 would have been decreased by 16.7%.

 

Integrated contract revenue accounted for approximately $385.5 million of total revenues, a decrease of approximately $92.3 million or 19.3%, compared to approximately $477.8 million for the prior fiscal year. The decrease in integrated revenues was mainly composed of a decrease of approximately $84.6 million or 38.0% in rail transportation and a decrease of approximately $10.2 million or 7.6% in industrial automation projects. The revenue decrease was partially offset by an increase of $8.3 million or 8.7% in mechanical and electrical solutions business.

 

Approximately $32.7 million of total revenues was generated from product sales, a decrease of approximately $21.8 million, or 40.0% compared to approximately $54.5 million in product sales revenue for the prior year. Excluding Hollycon’s revenue from the comparable figure for the prior fiscal year, the products sales revenue for fiscal year 2017 increased by 13.9 %.Product sales revenue depends on overall demand for the Company’s spare parts for customers’ maintenance and replacement purposes.

 

Approximately $13.8 million of total revenue was generated from service rendered, an increase of $1.8 million or 15.0% compared to $12.0 million of last year.

 

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The Company’s total revenue by segments was as follows:

 

(In USD millions)
   Fiscal year ended June 30, 
   2016   2017 
   $   % to Total Revenue   $   % to Total Revenue 
Industrial Automation   182.9    33.6%   172.7    39.9%
Rail Transportation   240.3    44.2%   155.7    36.1%
Mechanical and Electrical Solution   95.3    17.5%   103.5    24.0%
Miscellaneous   25.8    4.7%   -    0.0%
Total   544.3    100.0%   431.9    100.0%

 

Order Backlog: An important measure of the stability and growth of the Company’s business is the size of its order backlog, which represents the total amount of unrecognized contract revenue associated with existing contracts. Our order backlog as of June 30, 2017 amounted to approximately $524.0 million, representing a decrease of approximately $3.2 million, or 0.6%, compared to approximately $527.2 million as of June 30, 2016.

 

Of the total order backlog as of June 30, 2017, the unrecognized revenue associated with new contracts signed in the fiscal year 2017 was approximately $222.4 million and the amount brought forward from prior periods was approximately $301.6 million, comparing to the total backlog as of June 30, 2016 of approximately $243.0 million from new contracts signed in fiscal year 2016, and approximately $284.2 million from contracts carried forward from prior year.

 

Cost of revenues: Mirroring the categories of revenues, the cost of revenues can also be divided into three components including cost of integrated contracts, cost of products sold and cost of service rendered. For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, the total cost of revenues amounted to approximately $291.5 million, a decrease of approximately $47.1 million, or 13.9%, compared to approximately $338.6 million for the prior fiscal year. The decrease was due to an approximate $33.1 million decrease in the cost of integrated contracts, and a decrease of approximately $14.1 million or 58.5% in the cost of products.

 

The cost of integrated contract revenue consists primarily of three components: cost of equipment and materials, labor costs and other manufacturing expenses including but not limited to detecting expense, technology service fee, all of which incurred during the designing, building and delivering customized automation solutions process to customers. For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, the total cost of integrated contracts was approximately $277.5 million, compared to approximately $310.5 million for the prior fiscal year, representing a decrease of approximately $33.0 million, or 10.6%.  The decrease was primarily due to a decrease of approximately $41.3 million in cost of equipment and materials, which was partially offset by an increase of approximately $6.8 million in other manufacturing expenses, and an increase of approximately $1.5 million in labor cost. Of the total cost of integrated contract revenue for the fiscal year 2017, cost of equipment and materials accounted for approximately $161.4 million, compared to approximately $202.8 million for the prior fiscal year; labor cost accounted for approximately $78.4 million, compared to approximately $71.6 million for the prior fiscal year; and other manufacturing expenses accounted for approximately $37.6 million, compared to approximately $36.2 million for the prior fiscal year. Of the total integrated contract revenue for the fiscal year 2017, cost of equipment and materials accounted for 41.9%, compared to 37.2% for the prior fiscal year; labor cost accounted for 20.3%, compared to 13.2% for the prior fiscal year; and other manufacturing expenses accounted for 9.8%, compared to 6.6% for the prior fiscal year. The cost components of integrated contracts were determined and varied according to requirements of different customers.

 

Sales of products represent sales of spare parts (either company manufactured or purchased from outside vendors) to customers for maintenance and replacement purposes. Given the fact that the products purchased from outside vendors have different functions and capabilities from our self-made products, we decide whether to purchase or manufacture the necessary products based on the needs and preferences of different customers while considering the efficiency factor. Therefore, as a percentage of the cost of products sold, the self-made products and purchased products have varied significantly from time to time. The cost of products sold for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017 was approximately $10.0 million, a decrease of approximately $14.0 million, compared to approximately $24.0 million for the prior fiscal year.

 

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As for the cost of the service revenue, our employees spend time and incur expenses while they are with the customers. From time to time, materials costs related to the service are incurred, especially for providing extended warranty services. The cost of service revenue for fiscal year ended June 30, 2017 was approximately $4.0 million, stayed at about the same level, compared to approximately $4.0 million for the prior fiscal year.

 

Gross margin: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, as a percentage of total revenues, the overall gross margin was 32.5%, compared to 37.8% for the prior fiscal year. The gross margin for integrated contracts was 28.0% for the year ended June 30, 2017, compared to 35.0% for the prior year. The decrease in gross margin for integrated contracts was mainly due to our different sales mix during the fiscal year 2017. The gross margin for products sold was 69.5% for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, compared to 56.0% for the prior fiscal year. The gross margin for service provided was 70.8% for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, compared to 66.4% for the prior fiscal year.

 

Selling expenses: Selling expenses mainly consist of compensation, traveling and administrative expenses related to marketing, sales and promotion activities incurred by the Company’s marketing departments. Selling expenses were approximately $24.4 million for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, a decrease of 4.7%, or approximately $1.2 million, compared to approximately $25.6 million for the prior fiscal year. As a percentage of total revenues, selling expenses accounted for 5.7% and 4.7% for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2017 and 2016, respectively. The Company has established guidelines specifically tailored for different industries and regions to monitor and evaluate sales performance, and to control selling expenses.

 

General and administrative expenses: General and administrative expenses mainly include compensation, traveling and other administrative expenses of non-sales-related departments, such as the finance department, information systems department and human resources department. General and administrative expenses amounted to approximately $44.3 million for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, representing a decrease of approximately $1.5 million, or 3.3%, compared to approximately $45.8 million for the prior fiscal year. The decrease was mainly due to a decrease of $1.2 million in bad debt provision. As a percentage of total revenues, general and administrative expenses were 10.3% and 8.4% for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2017 and 2016, respectively.

 

Goodwill impairment charge: The Company engaged an independent third-party appraiser to perform goodwill impairment test on June 30 in each year, to judge whether the carrying amount of goodwill related to Concord and Bond Groups exceeded its fair value. The Company concluded that the carrying amount of goodwill associated with Concord Group was less than fair value of the goodwill and recorded a goodwill impairment charge of $11,211 and nil for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2017 and 2016, respectively. The impairment charge was mainly resulted from a revision of Concord Group’s long-term financial outlook.

 

Research and development expenses: Research and development expenses represent mostly employee compensation, materials consumed and experiment expenses related to specific new product research and development, as well as any expenses incurred for basic research on advanced technologies. For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, research and development expenses were approximately $30.1 million, representing a decrease of approximately $6.5 million, or 17.7%, compared to approximately $36.6 million for the prior fiscal year. As a percentage of total revenues, research and development expenses were 7.0% and 6.7% for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2017 and 2016, respectively.

 

VAT refunds and government subsidies: The state tax bureaus in China provide refunds out of the value added tax (“VAT”) they collect in order to encourage the research and development efforts made by certain qualified enterprises.  Some of our subsidiaries in China received such refunds. All VAT refunds, that have no further conditions to be met, are recognized in the statements of comprehensive income when cash or approval from the tax bureaus is received. For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, VAT refunds were approximately $16.9 million, compared to approximately $20.0 million for the prior fiscal year, decreasing by approximately $3.1 million, or 15.5%. As a percentage of total revenues, VAT refunds were 3.9% and 3.7% for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2017 and 2016, respectively.

 

The local governments in China also provide financial subsidies to encourage research and development efforts made by certain qualified enterprises. Some of our subsidiaries received such subsidies. For the government subsidies that have no further conditions to be met, the funds received are recognized in the statements of comprehensive income; for the subsidies that have certain operating conditions yet to be met, the fund received are recorded as liabilities and will be released to income when the conditions are met. Subsidy income from the government amounted to approximately $12.9 million and $2.9 million for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2017 and 2016, respectively, an increase of approximately $10.0 million, or 344.8%.

 

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Income from operations: Income from operations decreased by approximately $60.3 million, from approximately $120.6 million for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2016 to approximately $60.3 million for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017. The decrease was mainly due to the decrease of $65.3 million in the gross profit.

 

Interest income: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, interest income decreased by approximately $2.2 million, or 37.1% from approximately $5.9 million for the prior year, to approximately $3.7 million for the current period. As a percentage of total revenue, interest income accounted for 0.9% and 1.1% for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2017 and 2016, respectively. The interest income was mainly earned from time deposits with maturities over three months.

 

Interest expenses: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, interest expenses decreased by approximately $0.5 million, or 33.2% from approximately $1.4 million for the prior year, to approximately $0.9 million for the current period. As a percentage of total revenue, interest expenses accounted for 0.2% and 0.3% for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2017 and 2016, respectively. The interest expenses were incurred by the short-term and long-term loan/bond we had.

 

Other income (expenses), net: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, the other income (expenses), net decreased by approximately $2.4 million from approximately $4.1 million for the prior year, to approximately $1.7 million for the current period. The decrease was mainly due to the fluctuation of fair value of the contingent consideration related to the acquisition of Bond Group. We recorded approximately $1.7 million gain for the prior fiscal year.

 

Income tax expenses: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, the Company’s income tax expense was approximately $14.4 million for financial reporting purposes, an increase of approximately $0.2 million, as compared to $14.2 million for the prior year. During the fiscal year 2017, the Company recorded a deferred tax expense of $5.4 million related to the dilution of the Company’s interest in Hollycon. In addition, in the process of Settlement and Payment of Enterprise Income Tax for calendar year 2016 in May 2017, Beijing Hollysys and Hangzhou Hollysys were eligible for a preferential income tax rate of 10% for calendar year 2016 due to its “Key Software Enterprise” status, instead of the 15% used by the Company in calendar year 2016. As a result, the Company recorded a tax benefit of $4.4 million during the fourth quarter of fiscal 2017. Excluding the impact of the abovementioned tax expenses and tax benefit, the effective tax rate for the current year is 16.1%.

 

Net income attributable to non-controlling interest: The non-controlling interests of the Company include non-controlling shareholders’ interests in each subsidiary. For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, the non-controlling interest was the ownership interest of 5% in CECL. The net income attributable to non-controlling interest for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017 was approximately nil, a decrease of approximately $5.0 million, from approximately $5.0 million for the prior year. The decrease was mainly due to the disposal of Hollycon (Italy) and dilution and divestment of Hollycon, there is no other non-controlling interests except for 5% in CECL.

 

Net income and earnings per share attributable to Hollysys: For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, net income attributable to Hollysys amounted to approximately $68.9 million, representing a decrease of approximately $49.6 million, as compared to approximately $118.5 million for the prior year. The basic and diluted earnings per share were $1.15 and $1.14 for the year ended June 30, 2017, as compared to $2.00 and $1.97 for the prior year, representing a decrease of $0.85 and $0.83, respectively. The decrease was primarily due to the lower net income attributable to Hollysys compared to fiscal 2016.

 

B.Liquidity and Capital Resources

 

We believe our working capital is sufficient to meet our present requirements. We may, however, require additional cash due to changing business conditions or other future developments, including any investments or acquisitions we may decide to pursue. In the long-term, we intend to rely primarily on cash flow from operations and additional borrowings from banks to meet our anticipated cash needs. If our anticipated cash flow and borrowing capacity is insufficient to meet our requirements, we may also seek to sell additional equity, debt or equity-linked securities. We cannot assure you that any financing will be available in the amounts we need or on terms acceptable to us, if at all.

 

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In line with the industry practice, we typically have a long receivable collection cycle. As a result, our cash provided by our operations in any given year may not be sufficient to fully meet our operating cash requirements in that year. We will use available financing means, including bank loans, to provide sufficient cash inflows to balance timing differences in our cash flows.

 

We estimate our liquidity needs for investing and financing activities for fiscal 2019 will be approximately $14.0 million, which will be primarily related to the repayment of bank borrowings and capital expenditures. Our future working capital requirements will depend on many factors, including, among others, the rate of our revenue growth, the timing and extent of expansion of our sales and marketing activities, the timing of introductions of new products and/or enhancements to existing products, and the timing and extent of expansion of our manufacturing capacity.

 

Our long-term liquidity needs will relate primarily to working capital to pay our suppliers, and third-party manufacturers, as well as any increases in manufacturing capacity or acquisitions of third party businesses that we may seek in the future. We expect to meet these requirements primarily through our current cash holdings, revolving bank borrowings, as well as our cash flow from operations. For fiscal year 2019, we expect $8.0 million of capital expenditures, mainly related to purchase of the property, plant and equipment for manufacture and operation. We currently do not have any plan to incur significant capital and investing expenditures for the foreseeable future beyond 2019.

 

Cash Flow and Working Capital

 

As of June 30, 2018, we had total assets of approximately $1,210.1 million, of which cash and cash equivalents amounted to $265.7 million, time deposits with original maturities over three months amounted to $139.4 million, accounts receivable amounted to $275.2 million and inventories amounted to $58.1 million. While working capital was approximately $667.8 million, equity amounted to $842.4 million and our current ratio was approximately 3.0.

 

See Item 8, Financial Information, A. Consolidated Statements and Other Financial Information, Dividend Policy, for information on the ability of certain of our subsidiaries in China to make dividends to their respective parent companies.

 

The following table shows our cash flows with respect to operating activities, investing activities and financing activities for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2016, 2017 and 2018:

 

(In USD thousands)

 

Cash Flow Item  Fiscal Years Ended June 30 
   2016   2017   2018 
Net cash provided by operating activities  $46,737   $69,813   $125,192 
Net cash used in investing activities  $(2,454)  $(89,553)  $(49,748)
Net cash used in financing activities  $(6,780)  $(7,413)  $(12,197)
Effect of exchange rate changes on cash and cash equivalents  $(16,242)  $(4,302)  $4,788 
Net increase (decrease) in cash and cash equivalents  $21,261   $(31,455)  $68,035 
Cash and cash equivalents, beginning of year  $207,834   $229,095   $197,640 
Cash and cash equivalents, end of year  $229,095   $197,640   $265,675 

 

Operating Activities

 

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, net cash provided by operating activities was approximately $125.2 million, compared to approximately $69.8 million for prior fiscal year 2017. The net cash inflow of operating activities in fiscal year 2018 was primarily consisted of net income of approximately $107.4 million, approximately $16.8 million generated from non-operating items and non-cash items, approximately $1.0 million changes in working capital attributable to a decrease in account receivable of approximately $28.4 million, a decrease in inventories of approximately $11.4 million, a decrease of other receivables of approximately $10.0 million, an increase in deferred revenue of approximately $28.2 million, and an increase in deposits and other assets of approximately $19.4 million.

 

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For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, net cash provided by operating activities was approximately $69.8 million, compared to approximately $46.7 million for prior fiscal year 2016.  The net cash inflow of operating activities in fiscal year 2017 was primarily consisted of net income of approximately $69.8 million and approximately $13 million generated from non-operating items and non-cash items. All of which were partially offset by approximately $13.1 million used in working capital. Changes in working capital are attributable to an increase in deferred revenue of approximately $28.2 million, an increase of accounts payable of approximately $23.6 million, an increase of costs and estimated earnings in excess of billings approximately of $21.9 million, all of which were partially offset by a decrease in accounts receivable of approximately $23.4 million, and a decrease in accruals and other payable of approximately $20.3 million, a decrease in deposits and other assets approximately $12.7 million, a decrease in inventories approximately $10.7 million, and a decrease in other tax payables approximately $7.0 million.

 

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2016, net cash provided by operating activities was approximately $46.7 million, compared to approximately $84.0 million for prior fiscal year 2015.  The net cash inflow of operating activities in fiscal year 2016 was primarily consisted of net income of approximately $123.5 million, and changes in working capital attributable to a decrease in deferred revenue of approximately $47.6 million, a decrease of costs and estimated earnings in excess of billings approximately of $37.0 million, a decrease in accounts receivable of approximately $16.4 million, a decrease in income tax payable and other tax payable of approximately $5.0 million combined, and a decrease in inventories of approximately $4.6 million, all of which were partially offset by an increase in accounts payable of approximately $8.3 million, and an increase in due from related parties of approximately $8.2 million.

 

Investing Activities

 

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, net cash used in investing activities was approximately $49.7 million, compared to approximately $89.6 million for prior fiscal year 2017. The net cash used in investing activities in fiscal year 2018 mainly consisted of a cash outflow of approximately $2.3 million for capital expenditures, a cash outflow of approximately $5.9 million investment of equity investees, a cash outflow of approximately $179.2 million transferred from current accounts to time deposits in banks with original maturities between six months and one year, partially offset by a cash inflow of approximately $137.8 million from maturity of time deposits.

 

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, net cash used in investing activities was approximately $89.6 million, compared to approximately $2.5 million for prior fiscal year 2016. The net cash used in investing activities in fiscal year 2017 mainly consisted of a cash outflow of approximately $3.7 million for capital expenditures, a cash outflow of approximately $16.7 million cash in deconsolidated subsidiary, a cash outflow of approximately $2.7 million investment of an equity investee, a cash outflow of approximately $154.8 million transferred from current accounts to time deposits in banks with original maturities between six months and one year, partially offset by a cash inflow of approximately $89.3 million from maturity of time deposits.

 

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2016, net cash used in investing activities was approximately $2.5 million, compared to approximately $39.9 million for prior fiscal year 2015. The net cash used in investing activities in fiscal year 2016 mainly consisted of a cash outflow of approximately $7.9 million for capital expenditures, a cash outflow of approximately $107.1 million transferred from current accounts to time deposits in banks with original maturities between six months and one year, and a cash inflow of approximately $112.0 million from maturity of time deposits.

 

Financing Activities

 

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, net cash used in financing activities was approximately $12.2 million, as compared to approximately $7.4 million for the prior year. The net cash used in financing activities in fiscal year 2018 mainly consisted of a repayment of short-term bank loans of approximately $11.3 million, a payment of dividends of approximately $7.2 million, partially offset by proceeds from short-term bank loans of approximately $5.9 million.

 

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For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, net cash used in financing activities was approximately $7.4 million, as compared to approximately $6.8 million for the prior year. The net cash used in financing activities in fiscal year 2017 mainly consisted of a repayment of short-term bank loans of approximately $4.9 million, a repayment of long-term bank loans of approximately $7.4 million, a payment of dividends of approximately $12.0 million, partially offset by proceeds from short-term bank loans of approximately $10.1 million, and proceeds from exercise of share options of approximately $6.3 million.

 

For fiscal year ended June 30, 2016, net cash used in financing activities was approximately $6.8 million, as compared to approximately $1.3 million cash provided for the prior year. The net cash used in financing activities in fiscal year 2016 mainly consisted of a repayment of short-term bank loans of approximately $17.0 million, a repayment of long-term bank loans of approximately $9.7 million, partially offset by proceeds from issuance of shares of a subsidiary of approximately $7.7 million, and proceeds from exercise of share options of approximately $5.4 million.

 

C.Research and Development, Patents and Licenses

 

Research and Development Efforts

 

As a high-technology company, our business and long-term development rely highly on our research and development capabilities. Our research and development process is based on Capability Maturity Model Integration Level 2&3 and can be classified into the following seven phases:

 

·Study phase

 

·Requirement phase

 

·Designing phase

 

·Implementation phase

 

·Testing phase

 

·Inspection phase

 

·Maintaining phase

 

We use standard product development life cycle models, including the waterfall model, increment model, iterative model and prototype. As a technology leader we continually develop and patent new automation technologies.  We also continually review and evaluate technological changes affecting the automation and integrated system industries and invest substantially in application-based research and development. We currently employ 652 staff in the research and development department or engaged in research and development work.

 

Our core technologies achieved from our research and development efforts include:

 

·Large scale software platform architecture design;

 

·Proprietary network design and development technologies;

 

·Safety computer platform design and manufacturing;

 

·Efficient I/O (Input /Output) signal processing design technology; and

 

·Embedded system design and manufacturing.

 

We are committed to incorporating the latest advances in electronics and information system technology into its products and, whenever possible, developing state-of-the-art proprietary products based on its extensive internal expertise and research efforts.  We currently spend approximately 6-9% of our annual revenues on research and development. Our recent major research and development focuses include:

 

·Transportation Automation;

 

·Manufacturing Automation; and

 

·Process Automation.

 

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Our research and development efforts have led to the invention of several proprietary systems in the fields of DCS, PLC and transportation automation systems. We improved our 5th generation DCS (Distributed Control System), which represents higher reliability, stability, better safety protection and user-friendliness with advanced system architecture, hardware, software designs and industry expert solutions. We completed the development and certified our SIS (Safety Instrumented System) –HiaGuard with SIL3 (Safety Integrity Level 3) in compliance with international standards. HiaGuard is the first domestically developed SIS technology and breaks the monopoly held by foreign systems in China in this product. Hollysys’ HiaGuard can be applied for ESD (Emergency Shutdown System), PSD (Process Shutdown System), and FGS (Fire and Gas Systems) used in various industries. We also invented several series of PLC (Programmable Logic Controller) products, and the most successful applications include the mining safety protection systems and Traditional Chinese Medicine manufacturing and packaging machine and dispensing machine. Our core technologies provide a platform that is designed to enable the rapid and efficient development of our technologies for specific applications that are quickly, efficiently and affordably tailored to particular industries and to the needs of our customers. Our software development tools enable us to program our systems rapidly, allowing us to apply digital technologies that take advantage of the tremendous advances in electronics and information technology to improve quality and reliability while reducing cost. The market for our products includes, not only the large number of factories that are continually under construction in China’s rapidly expanding industrial base, but also extends to the replacement and upgrading of outdated legacy systems to bring a higher degree of control and efficiency to the automation of processes, delivering increasing benefits to customers as they meet increased competition. In the future we expect that the market for our products will extend further into South Asia and the Middle East.

 

We already have our proprietary high-speed rail signaling system including ATP (Automatic Train Protection), TCC (Train Control Center), LEU (Line-Side Electronic Unit), BTM (Balise Transmission Module), TSRS (Temporary Speed Restriction Server), HVC (Hollysys Vital Computer) and Interlocking system been certified according to international standards and have passed the Safety Integrity Level 4 (SIL4) certification. For the subway signaling system, the proprietary ATS (Automatic Train Supervision) and CBI (Computer Based Interlocking) have passed SIL2 and SIL4 certification respectively by the end of 2011. And in March 2013 we finished the development and certified ZC (Zone Controller), LEU (Line-side Electronic Unit) and Balise according to SIL4 (Safety Integrity Level 4) requirements in compliance of international standards, the certification of ATP (Automatic Train Protection) for subway signaling system was finished at the end of calendar year 2013. For both of the signaling systems, Hollysys is one of the earliest domestic companies in developing and certifying the signaling systems according to the international standards. Hollysys will be one of the few companies in the world which command the most leading and safety critical technologies of rail signaling system and we will compete with multinational companies such as Siemens, Alston and Bombardier in domestic and world arena. We believe our research and development efficiency, latest technology, strong customization and better value for money proposition will give us an unparalleled advantage in the high-speed rail and subway signaling markets.

 

For the fiscal years 2018, 2017, and 2016, aggregate annual research and development expenses were approximately $36.6 million, $30.1 million, and $36.6 million, respectively.

 

Intellectual Property Rights

 

We rely on a combination of copyright, patent, trademark and other intellectual property laws, nondisclosure agreements and other protective measures to protect our proprietary rights. We also utilize unpatented proprietary know-how and trade secrets and employ various methods to protect them. As of June 30, 2018, we held 213 software copyrights, 158 authorized patents, 217 patent applications and 2 registered trademarks. Our earliest software copyrights will expire in 2051. Our invention patents have terms of 20 years. The first expiration will be in 2020 and the second will be in 2023 and our utility patents and design patents have terms of 10-20 years. One utility patent is expected to expire in 2018 and one design patent expires in year 2019.

 

Although we employ a variety of intellectual property in the development and manufacturing of products, we believe that only a few of our intellectual property rights are critical to our current operations. However, when taken as a whole, we believe that our intellectual property rights are significant and that the loss of all or a substantial portion of such rights could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations. Also, from time to time, we may desire or be required to renew or to obtain licenses from others in order to further develop and manufacture commercially viable products effectively.

 

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We market our DCS products mainly under the brand name of “HOLLiAS”.  Our brand name is well-established and is recognized as associated with high quality and reliable products by industry participants and customers. We have obtained trademark protection for our brand name “HOLLiAS” in the PRC as well as in other countries in the world. In addition, we have also registered or applied for a series of trademarks including brand names for us and our products. The trademarks are issued for 10-year periods and may be renewed prior to expiration.

 

D.Trend Information

 

Other than as disclosed in the foregoing disclosures and elsewhere in this annual report, we are not aware of any trends, uncertainties, demands, commitments or events for the fiscal year 2018 that are reasonably likely to have a material adverse effect on our net revenues, income, profitability, liquidity or capital resources, or that caused the disclosed financial information to be not necessarily indicative of future operating results or financial conditions.

 

E.Off-Balance Sheet Arrangements

 

We do not believe that we have any off-balance sheet arrangements that have or are reasonably likely to have a current or future effect on our financial condition, changes in financial condition, revenues or expenses, results of operations, liquidity, capital expenditures or capital resources that are material to an investment in our securities.

 

F.Tabular Disclosure of Contractual Obligations

 

The following table sets forth our contractual obligations, including long-term loans and operating leases and capital and operational commitments as of June 30, 2018.

 

(In USD thousands)  Total   Less than 1 year   1-3 years   3-5 years   More than 5
years
 
Short-term & Long-term Loans                         
-Principal   23,924    3,215    20,343    225    141 
-Interest   781    523    163    21    74 
Operating Lease Obligations(1)   4,901    2,283    1,578    1,040    - 
Purchase Obligations(2)   188,558    161,660    16,810    6,726    3,362 
Capital Obligations(3)   243    243    -    -    - 
Standby Letters of Credit(4)   25,782    25,782    -    -    - 
Performance Guarantees(5)   51,744    32,458    18,826    165    295 
Total   295,933    226,164    57,720    8,177    3,872 

 

  (1) Operating lease obligations

It represents the future minimum payments under non-cancelable operating leases.

 

  (2) Purchase obligations

As of June 30, 2018, the Company had approximately $188.6 million in purchase obligations for the coming fiscal year, for purchases of inventories. The inventories will be mainly used for fulfilling existing contracts or new contracts resulted from the expansion of our operations.

 

  (3) Capital obligations

As of June 30, 2018, the Company had approximately $0.2 million in capital obligations for the coming fiscal year, mainly for the Company’s information system construction.

 

  (4) Standby letters of credit

We have issued letters of credit to our suppliers to serve as assurance of payment, and issued to our subsidiaries as comprehensive credit. When a letter of credit is issued, a proportion of the total amount covered by the letter of credit may be required to be deposited in the bank, and is not available until the payment has been settled or the letter of credit has expired. As of June 30, 2018, we had approximately $25.8 million in standby letters of credit obligations, with $12.3 million of restricted cash deposited in banks for standby letter of credit.

 

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  (5) Performance guarantees

We have provided performance guarantees to our customers to serve as assurance of performance for the contractual obligations. When a performance guarantee is issued, a proportion of the total guarantee amount may be required to be deposited in the bank, and is not available until the guarantee is expired. As of June 30, 2018, we had approximately $51.7 million performance guarantees obligation, with $6.4 million of restricted cash deposited in banks for performance guarantees.

 

Other than the contractual obligations and commercial commitments set forth above, we did not have any other long-term debt obligations, operating lease obligations, capital commitments, purchase obligations or other long-term liabilities as of June 30, 2018.

 

G.Safe Harbor

 

See "Forward-Looking Information" on page 8.

 

ITEM 6.DIRECTORS, SENIOR MANAGEMENT AND EMPLOYEES

 

A.Directors and Senior Management

 

The following table sets forth certain information regarding our directors and senior management as of June 30, 2018.

 

Name   Age   Position
         
Baiqing Shao   50   Chairman of Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer
Steven Wang   50   Chief Financial Officer
Colin Sung   52   Director
Jerry Zhang   46   Director
Jianyun Chai   56   Director
Li Qiao   61   Director

 

Mr. Baiqing Shao, one of the main founders of the Company, has served as our Chief Executive Officer since November, 2013 and Chairman of the Company and General Manager of Hollysys Group since December, 2016. Prior to that, he was the Vice General Manager of Hollysys Group starting from December 2010. Since July 2014, he has been serving as the head of overseas business. From February 2012 to November 2013, he was the Senior Vice President, Business Development of the Company. From 2002 to 2010, he served as the General Manager of Beijing Hollysys Information Technology Co., Ltd.(currently known as “Shenhua Hollysys Information Technology Co., Ltd.”), one of our indirect equity investees. From October 1996 to January 1999, he served as the head of R&D. Mr. Shao has served the Company for more than twenty-four years as one of the founding group of engineers. Mr. Shao holds a Master Degree of Computer Science from the 6th Research Institute of China Electronics Corporation and an MBA degree from Peking University.

 

Mr. Steven Wang, has over 15 years of experience in financial controlling, accounting and budgeting, tax planning and corporate investment in various investment institutions and multinational corporations, with deep familiarity with rules and regulations of US and Chinese capital markets. Prior to joining Hollysys, Mr. Wang served as the Chief Financial Officer and Vice President of Xinhua Lian Investment Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of a top 500 company in China. From 2005 to 2012, Mr. Wang worked at various managerial positions at Globe Specialty Metals Inc. and Zhonglian Zhongke Co., Ltd., a Hong Kong Stock Exchange listed company. Mr. Wang received an MBA degree in Finance from the Wharton School, the University of Pennsylvania.

 

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Mr. Colin Sung, has served as a member of the Board of Directors and Chairman of the Audit Committee of Board of Directors of the Company since February 2008. Mr. Sung is the Chief Financial Officer for eHi Auto Services Limited since April 2013. Mr. Sung also has served as adviser of NeWorld Education Group, Inc. since August 2012 and served as Chief Financial Officer of NeWorld Education Group since August 2011. Prior to joining NeWorld, he was the CFO of Lighting the Box from March 2011. Mr. Sung served as the deputy Chief Executive Officer and the Chief Financial Officer of Linktone Ltd., a NASDAQ-listed wireless interactive entertainment service provider in China, from 2009 to 2011. From 2008 to 2009, he served as the Chief Financial Officer and President of China Cablecom Holdings, Ltd. From 2005 to 2008, he was the Chief Financial Officer of Linktone Ltd., where he also served as the acting Chief Executive Officer in 2006 and as its director of board from 2007 to 2008. From 2004 to 2005, Mr. Sung was the Corporate Controller of UTI, United States, Inc., a subsidiary of International Freight Forwarder (NASDAQ: UTIW), and from 2001 to 2004, was a Vice President of finance and Corporate Controller of USF Worldwide, Inc., a subsidiary of US Freightways. From 1997 to 2001, Mr. Sung was Vice President and Corporate Controller for US Operation of Panalpina Welttransport Holding, (PWTN.SW). Mr. Sung received his bachelor’s degree in accounting from William Paterson University in 1992 and his MBA degree from American InterContinental University in 2004. Mr. Sung is a Certified Public Accountant and Certified Global Management Accountant.

 

Ms. Jerry Zhang, has served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Company since September 2007. Ms. Jerry Zhang is Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”) of Standard Chartered Bank (China) Limited (“Standard Chartered China”). Prior to this role, she has held a variety of senior roles at Standard Chartered China. She was the bank’s Deputy CEO, China and CEO, North China and General Manager, Beijing Branch. Her key focuses were strategic planning, business development and corporate governance of the Bank’s operations in North China. As the General Manager of Beijing Branch, Ms. Zhang was also responsible for overall management of Beijing Branch. Ms. Zhang enjoys a strong track record in setting up good relationship with clients and creating value both for the bank and the clients. In her position as Head of Financial Institutions (“FI”), Ms. Zhang has led to achieve frog leap developments of the Bank’s FI business, which has become the biggest FI business amongst all foreign banks in China in almost all aspects. Ms. Zhang joined Standard Chartered China in 1994, and has accumulated rich implementation and management experiences in wholesale banking business. She has successfully established non-banking financial institutions business in China for the Bank. In 2009, Ms. Zhang has left the bank for a short duration during which she acted as Chief Representative of Fidelity International Asset Management Co. Beijing Representative Office. Mrs. Zhang received her M.B.A. from Lancaster University.

 

Dr. Jianyun Chai, has served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Company since June 2008.  Dr. Chai is currently a professor and the head of the Institute of Power Electronic and Electrical Machine System at Tsinghua University in China. Before he joined Tsinghua University as an Associate Professor in 1999, Dr. Chai spent eight years working in the motor and information industries in Japan. Dr. Chai is also a member of various societies and organizations, including the China Renewable Energy Society, the Chinese Society for Electrical Engineering, and the Chinese Wind Energy Association. Dr. Chai received a Bachelor’s degree and a PhD in Electrical Engineering from Tsinghua University in 1984 and 1989.

 

Ms. Li Qiao, is the Chairman of Agriculture Resources Pte Ltd. and the Director of CSIC International Pte Ltd. She served as Chairman of the Company from 2007 to 2010 and as Director of Beijing Hollysys Co., Ltd. from 1999 to 2008. Before that, Ms. Qiao had worked in government for more than ten years. She was the Minster of Enterprise Division in Business Administration Committee of The Beijing Municipality Concerning the Experimental Area for Developing New-Technology Industries, and also served as the head of the Zhongguancun Technology Park (“Zhongguancun”) Administrative Committee. Ms. Li Qiao participated in setting the Five-year plan of Chinese High-Tech Industrial Area and Zhongguancun High-Tech Development and Industrial Policy. She also participated in organizing and editing “The Regulations of Zhongguancun High-Tech Development Park” which is regarded as the fundamental law of Zhongguancun. Ms. Qiao also has extensive experience in equity investment. She organized twelve industry annual analysis reports and participated in establishing the first Beijing venture capital company, invested and successfully helped a number of companies listed in domestic and abroad. The investment projects that Ms. Qiao involved with include biological medicine, high-end equipment manufacturing, new energy, chemical and energy, agriculture, education, integrated circuits, aerospace, fast moving consumer goods, electronic information and other industries. She holds an EMBA of Science and Technology from Hong Kong University.

 

There is no arrangement or understanding with any major shareholders, customers, suppliers or others, pursuant to which any person named above was selected as a director or member of senior management.

 

No family relationship exists between any of the persons named above.

 

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B.Compensation

 

Executive Compensation

 

The aggregate cash compensation paid to our executive officers as a group was $971,563 for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018.

 

In the fiscal year ended June 30, 2015, the Company granted 1,740,000 stock options to key employees, including options to purchase 675,000 ordinary shares to the senior executives. The current outstanding awards have vesting periods of up to five years depending on the person’s position and all of the grants have specific performance milestones. Additionally, the outstanding awards have a provision that if in certain instances the milestones are exceeded by specified targets, then additional ordinary shares will vest for the related period. The exercise periods for the options are five years from the date of grant, May 14, 2015. As of June 30, 2018, 306,000 options were vested and none of the options were exercised.

 

Director Compensation

 

We pay each of our non-employee directors who are not Company employees a monthly fee as compensation for the services to be provided by him/her as a non-employee director. During fiscal 2018, we paid $4,500/month to Colin Sung, $3,500/month to Jerry Zhang, $2,500/month to Jianyun Chai, $3,500/month to Li Qiao. We also reimburse our non-employee directors for out-of-pocket expenses incurred in attending meetings.

 

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, the aggregate amount of cash compensation paid to our directors as a group was $168,000.

 

2015 Equity Plan

 

On May 14, 2015, the Board of Directors approved 2015 Equity Incentive Plan (the “2015 Equity Plan”). The 2015 Equity Plan authorized the issuance of five million shares. It will terminate ten years following the date that it was adopted by the Board of Directors. The purposes of 2015 Equity Plan are similar as the 2006 Plan, which is used to promote the long-term growth and profitability of the Company and its affiliates by stimulating the efforts of employees, directors and consultants of the Company and its affiliates who are selected to be participants, aligning the long-term interests of participants with those of shareholders, heightening the desire of participants to continue in working toward and contributing to the success of the Company, attracting and retaining the best available personnel for positions of substantial responsibility, and generally providing additional incentive for them to promote the success of the Company’s business through the grant of awards of or pertaining to shares of the Company’s ordinary shares.  A copy of 2015 Equity Plan was filed with the Registration Statement on Form S-8 (No. 333-208615) and is incorporated herein by reference.

 

The following paragraphs summarize the principal terms of our 2015 plan.

 

Administration. The 2015 Plan is currently being administered by our board of directors. The board has the authority to determine the specific terms and conditions of all awards granted under the 2015 Plan, including, without limitation, the number of shares subject to each award, the price to be paid for the shares and the applicable vesting criteria. The board also has discretion to make all other determinations necessary or advisable for the administration of the 2015 Plan.

 

Eligibility. Non-statutory share options, restricted shares, restricted share units, share appreciation rights, performance units and performance shares may be granted to employees, directors or consultants either alone or in combination with any other awards. Incentive stock options may be granted only to our employees.

 

Shares Available for Issuance Under the 2015 Plan. The maximum aggregate number of shares that may be issued under the 2015 Plan is 5,000,000 ordinary shares. The number and class of shares available under the 2015 Plan are subject to adjustment in the event of certain reorganizations, mergers, combinations, recapitalizations, share splits, share dividends, or other similar events which change the number or kind of shares outstanding.

 

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Transferability. Unless otherwise provided in the 2015 Plan or otherwise determined by the board, an award may not be sold, pledged, assigned, hypothecated, transferred, or disposed of in any manner other than by will or by the laws of descent or distribution and may be exercised, during the lifetime of the participant, only by the participant.

 

Termination of, or Amendments to, the 2015 Plan. The board may at any time amend, alter, suspend or terminate the 2015 Plan, provided that the Company will obtain shareholder approval of any 2015 Plan amendment to the extent necessary and desirable to comply with applicable laws.

 

The 2015 Plan will terminate ten years following the date it was adopted by the board, unless sooner terminated by the board.

 

The following table summarizes, as of June 30, 2018, the outstanding options that we had granted to our current directors and executive officers.

 

Name  Number of
securities
underlying
unexercised
options
exercisable
   Exercise Price
(US$/Share)
   Grant Date  Expiration Date
Baiqing Shao   90,000    22.05   May 14, 2015  May 13, 2020

 

Employment Agreements

 

We entered into a three-year employment agreement with our Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Baiqing Shao on November 30, 2013. The agreement was automatically renewed on November 30, 2016. Mr. Shao is entitled to insurance benefits, four weeks’ vacation, and reimbursement of business expenses and, if necessary, relocation expenses. The agreement may be terminated by us for death, disability and cause. Mr. Shao may terminate the employment agreement for any good reason at any time. The agreements contain provisions for the protection of confidential information and a three-year-after employment non-competition period within China.

 

We entered into a three-year employment agreement with our Chief Financial Officer, Mr. Steven Wang on June 27, 2018. Mr. Wang is entitled to insurance benefits, four weeks’ vacation, and reimbursement of business expenses and, if necessary, relocation expenses. The agreement may be terminated by us for death, disability and cause. Mr. Wang may terminate the employment agreement for any good reason at any time. The agreements contain provisions for the protection of confidential information and a three-year-after employment non-competition period within China.

 

C.Board Practices

 

Terms of Directors and Executive Officers

 

Our board consisted of five directors for fiscal year 2018. Our directors are not subject to a term of office limitation, and hold office until the next annual meeting of members or until such director’s earlier resignation, removal from office, death or incapacity. Any vacancy on our board resulting from death, resignation, removal or other cause, and any newly created directorship resulting from any increase in the authorized number of directors between meetings of members, may be filled either by the affirmative vote of a majority of all the directors then in office (even if less than a quorum) or by a resolution of members. In addition, the service agreement between us and the directors do not provide benefits upon termination of their services In connection with the adoption of the 2010 Rights Plan, we amended our Memorandum and Articles of Association to provide that directors may only be removed by shareholders for cause.

 

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Our executive officers are appointed by our board.  The executive officers shall hold office until their successors are duly elected and qualified, but any officer elected or appointed by the directors may be removed at any time, with or without cause, by resolution of directors.  Any vacancy occurring in any office may be filled by resolution of directors.

 

Independence of Directors

 

We have elected to follow the rules of NASDAQ to determine whether a director is independent.  Our board will also consult with counsel to ensure that our board’s determinations are consistent with those rules and all relevant securities and other laws and regulations regarding the independence of directors. Rule 5605(a)(2) of Listing Rules of The NASDAQ Stock Market, Inc., or the NASDAQ Listing Rules, defines an “independent director” generally as a person, other than an officer of the Company, who does not have a relationship with the Company that would interfere with the director’s exercise of independent judgment.  Consistent with these considerations, our board has affirmatively determined that, Mr. Colin Sung, Mr. Jianyun Chai and Ms. Jerry Zhang currently are our independent directors.

 

Board Committees

 

Our board has established an audit committee, a compensation committee and a corporate governance and nominating committee. Each committee is comprised solely of independent directors within the meaning of Rule 5605(a)(2) of the Nasdaq Listing Rules, and meet the criteria for independence set forth in Rule 10A-3(b)(1) of the Exchange Act.

 

Audit Committee

 

Our audit committee consists of Mr. Colin Sung, Ms. Jerry Zhang, and Mr. Jianyun Chai, with Mr. Sung serving as the Chair. Our board has determined that all of our audit committee members are independent directors within the meaning of applicable NASDAQ listing rules, and meet the criteria for independence set forth in Rule 10A-3(b)(1) of the Exchange Act.

 

Our board has determined that each of the committee members has an understanding of generally accepted accounting principles and financial statements, the ability to assess the general application of such principles in connection with our financial statements, including estimates, accruals and reserves, experience in analyzing or evaluating financial statements of similar breadth and complexity as our financial statements, an understanding of internal controls and procedures for financial reporting, and an understanding of audit committee functions.

 

Our board believes that Mr. Sung qualifies as an “audit committee financial expert” within the meaning of all applicable rules.  Our board believes that Mr. Sung has financial expertise from his degrees in business, his activities as a chief executive officer and chief financial officer of various companies, and his consulting activities in the areas of accounting, corporate finance, capital formation and corporate financial analysis.

 

We adopted an audit committee charter under which the committee is responsible for reviewing the scope, planning and staffing of the audit and preparation of the financial statements.  This includes consultation with management, the auditors and other consultants and professionals involved in the preparation of the financial statements and reports.  The committee is responsible for performing oversight of the relationship with our independent auditors.  The committee also has a general compliance oversight role in assuring that our directors, officers and management comply with our code of ethics, reviewing and approving of related party transactions, dealing with complaints regarding accounting, internal controls and auditing matters, and complying with accounting and legal requirements applicable to us.

 

Pursuant to the terms of its charter, the audit committee’s responsibilities include, among other things:

 

·selecting our independent auditors and pre-approving all auditing and non-auditing services permitted to be performed by our independent auditors;

 

·reviewing with our independent auditors any audit problems or difficulties and management’s response;

 

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·reviewing and approving all proposed related-party transactions;

 

·discussing the annual audited financial statements with management and our independent auditors;

 

·reviewing major issues as to the adequacy of our internal controls and any special audit steps adopted in light of significant internal control deficiencies;

 

·annually reviewing and reassessing the adequacy of our audit committee charter;

 

·such other matters that are specifically delegated to our audit committee by our board of directors from time to time;

 

·meeting separately and periodically with management and our internal and independent auditors; and

 

·reporting regularly to the full board of directors.

 

Compensation Committee

 

Our compensation committee consists of Ms. Jerry Zhang and Mr. Jianyun Chai and Mr. Colin Sung, with Ms. Jerry Zhang serving as its Chair. Our board has determined that all of our compensation committee members are independent directors within the meaning of applicable NASDAQ listing rules, and meet the criteria for independence set forth in Rule 10A-3(b)(1) of the Exchange Act.

 

Our compensation committee assists the board in reviewing and approving the compensation structure of our executive officers, including all forms of compensation to be provided to our executive officers.  Our chief executive officer may not be present at any committee meeting during which his compensation is deliberated.  The Compensation Committee is responsible for, among other things:

 

·approving and overseeing the compensation package for our chief executive officer and the other senior executive officers;

 

·reviewing and approving corporate goals and objectives relevant to the compensation of our chief executive officer, evaluating the performance of our chief executive officer in light of those goals and objectives, and setting the compensation level of our chief executive officer based on this evaluation;

 

·reviewing and making recommendations in respect of director compensation;

 

·engaging and overseeing compensation consultants;

 

·reviewing periodically and making recommendations to the Board regarding any long-term incentive compensation or equity plans, programs or similar arrangements, annual bonuses, employee pension and welfare benefit plans and the administration of those plans; and

 

·reviewing and making recommendations to the Board regarding succession plans for the chief executive officer and other senior officers.

 

Corporate Governance and Nominating Committee

 

Our corporate governance and nominating committee consists of Ms. Jerry Zhang, Mr. Jianyun Chai and Mr. Colin Sung with Ms. Zhang acting as the Chair. Each member is “independent” as that term is defined under the NASDAQ listing rules.  The corporate governance and nominating committee assists the board of directors in identifying individuals qualified to become our directors and in determining the composition of the board and its committees. The corporate governance and nominating committee is responsible for, among other things:

 

·identifying and recommending to the Board nominees for election or re-election to the board, or for appointment to fill any vacancy;

 

·reviewing annually with the board the current composition of the board in light of the characteristics of independence, age, skills, experience and availability of service to us;

 

·identifying and recommending to the board the directors to serve as members of the board’s committees; and

 

·monitoring compliance with our Corporate Governance Guidelines

 

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D.       Employees

 

We had 3,292, 3,202 and 3,641 employees as of June 30, 2018, 2017, and 2016, respectively. As of June 30, 2018, there were 2,716 employees located in China and 576 employees outside China.  The following table sets forth our employees as of June 30, 2018 based on their functional areas within the Company:

 

Category  China   Overseas   Total 
Sales & Marketing   432    13    445 
Research and development   650    2    652 
Engineering   896    424    1,320 
Production   356    -    356 
Management   382    137    519 
Total   2,716    576    3,292 

 

We believe that our relationship with our employees is good. The remuneration payable to employees includes basic salaries and bonuses. We have not experienced any significant problems or disruption to our operations due to labor disputes, nor have we experienced any difficulties in recruitment and retention of experienced staff. As required by applicable laws of China, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Dubai, Saudi Arabia, India, Qatar, Macau and Indonesian we have entered into employment contracts with all of our officers, managers and employees.

 

Our employees in China participate in a state pension scheme organized by Chinese municipal and provincial governments.  We also contribute to social insurance for our employees each month, which includes pension, medical insurance, unemployment insurance, occupational injuries insurance and housing providence fund in accordance with PRC regulations.

 

Our employees in Singapore, who are Singapore citizens and Singapore permanent residents, participate in monthly statutory contribution requirements into the Central Provident Fund organised by the Central Provident Fund Board, a statutory board under the Ministry of Manpower. It is a comprehensive social security system that enables the qualified to set aside funds for retirement, healthcare, home ownership, family protection and asset enhancement.

 

Our employees in Malaysia participate in contributing into an Employee’s Provident Fund, a monthly mandatory saving and retirement plan organized by the Employee’s Provident Fund Board, a Malaysian government agency under the Ministry of Finance. We also contribute to social insurance for our employees each month, which include medical and cash benefits, provision of artificial aids and rehabilitation to employees in order to provide financial guarantees and protection to the family in accordance to Malaysia regulations.

 

E.       Share Ownership

 

The following table sets forth information with respect to the beneficial ownership of our ordinary shares (i) by each of our officers and directors, as of September 14, 2018; (ii) by each person who is known by us to beneficially own more than 5% of our ordinary shares as of June 30, 2018. The table does not include any preferred shares or ordinary shares that may be issued under the Rights Plan of the Company. The address of each of the persons set forth below is in care of Hollysys Automation Technologies Ltd., No. 2 Disheng Middle Road, Beijing Economic-Technological Development Area, Beijing, P. R. China 100176.

 

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Name & Address of
Beneficial Owner
  Office, if Any  Title of Class  Amount & Nature of
Beneficial
Ownership (1)
   Percent of 
Class (2)
 
Officers and Directors              
Baiqing Shao  Chairman and Chief Executive Officer   Ordinary Shares   4,399,223(3)   7.29%
Steven Wang  Chief Financial Officer   Ordinary Shares   *    * 
Colin Sung  Director   Ordinary Shares   46,250(4)   * 
Jerry Zhang  Director   Ordinary Shares   37,500(5)   * 
Jianyun Chai  Director   Ordinary Shares   36,250(6)   * 
Li Qiao  Director   Ordinary Shares   535,588(7)   * 
                  
5% Securities Holder                 
Baiqing Shao      Ordinary Shares   4,399,223(3)   7.29%
Prudential PLC      Ordinary Shares   9,723,490(8)   16.11%
Davis Selected Advisers      Ordinary Shares   5,259,264(9)   8.71%

 

* Less than 1%.

 

  (1) Beneficial Ownership is determined in accordance with the rules of the Securities and Exchange Commission and generally includes voting or investment power with respect to securities.  Except as otherwise indicated, each of the beneficial owners listed above has direct ownership of and sole voting power and investment power with respect to our ordinary shares.

 

  (2) As of September 18, 2018, a total of 60,342,099 ordinary shares are outstanding pursuant to SEC Rule 13d-3(d)(1).  For each beneficial owner above, any options exercisable within 60 days have been included in the denominator.

 

  (3) The securities reported as held by Mr. Baiqing Shao include 4,144,223 shares of our ordinary shares held indirectly through Ace Lead Profits Limited. The foregoing entity is a BVI entity that is wholly-owned and controlled by Mr. Baiqing Shao therefore he may be deemed to be the beneficial owner of the ordinary shares held by it. The securities reported as held by Mr. Baiqing Shao also include options to purchase 90,000 ordinary shares that are vested. The exercise price of the options is $22.05 per share and the expiration date is May 13, 2020.

 

  (4) The securities reported as held by Mr. Colin Sung include 35,000 ordinary shares that were issued and 11,250 restricted shares vested but not issued, but do not include 11,250 restricted shares that are not yet vested.

 

  (5) The securities reported as held by Ms. Jerry Zhang include 37,500 restricted shares vested but not issued; but do not include 7,500 restricted shares that are not yet vested.

 

  (6) The securities reported as held by Mr. Jianyun Chai includes 36,250 restricted shares vested but not issued, but do not include 8,750 restricted shares that are not yet vested.

 

(7)The securities reported as held by Ms. Li Qiao include 528,088 ordinary shares of our ordinary shares held indirectly through Acclaimed Insight Investments Ltd, Glory Pearl International Ltd and Time Keep Investment Ltd. And 7,500 restricted shares vested but not issued, but do not include 7,500 restricted shares that are not yet vested.

 

(8)Based on information provided by Prudential PLC in their Form 13F filed with the SEC on August 14, 2018. As reported, Eastspring Investments (Singapore), LTD and M&G Investment Management, LTD, which are members of Prudential PLC, held 4,419,049 and 5,304,441 of our ordinary shares respectively as of June 30, 2018.

 

(9)Based on information provided by Davis Selected Advisers in their Form 13F filed with the SEC on August 13, 2018. As reported, Davis Selected Advisers held 5,259,264 of our ordinary shares as of June 30, 2018.

 

None of our major shareholders have different voting rights from other shareholders. We are not aware of any arrangement that may, at a subsequent date, result in a change of control of the Company.

 

ITEM 7.MAJOR SHAREHOLDERS AND RELATED PARTY TRANSACTIONS

 

A.Major Shareholders

 

Please refer to Item 6.E “Directors, Senior Management and Employees — Share Ownership.”

 

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B.Related Party Transactions

 

The related party relationships and related party transactions are listed as follows:

 

Related party relationships

 

Name of related parties   Relationship with the Company
     
Shenhua Hollysys Information Technology Co., Ltd. (“Shenhua Information”)   20% owned by Beijing Hollysys
China Techenergy Co., Ltd. (“China Techenergy”)   40% owned by Beijing Hollysys
Beijing Hollysys Electric Motor Co., Ltd. (“Electric Motor”)   40% owned by Beijing Hollysys
Beijing Hollysys Machine Automation Co., Ltd. (“Hollysys Machine”)   30% owned by Hollysys Investment
Heilongjiang Ruixing Technology Co., Ltd. (“Heilongjiang Ruixing”)   6% owned by Beijing Hollysys
Beijing IPE Biotechnology Co., Ltd. (“Beijing IPE”)   22.02% owned by Beijing Hollysys
Beijing Hollycon Medicine & Technology. Co., Ltd. (“Hollycon”)   30% owned by Hollysys Group
Shenzhen HollySys Intelligent Technologies Co., Ltd. (“Shenzhen HollySys”)   60% owned by Hollysys Intelligent

 

Due from related parties

 

   June 30, 
   2017   2018 
         
China Techenergy  $28,778   $29,182 
Shenhua Information   3,267    3,570 
Hollysys Machine   965    853 
Hollycon   79    51 
Shenzhen HollySys   2    22 
Heilongjiang Ruixing   1,049    - 
Beijing IPE   2    - 
           
   $34,142   $33,678 

 

The Company’s management believes that the collection of amounts due from related parties is reasonably assured and accordingly and no provision had been made for these balances.

 

Due to related parties

 

   June 30, 
   2017   2018 
         
China Techenergy  $1,117   $4,141 
Hollysys Machine   817    828 
Shenhua Information   353    348 
Electric Motor   11    34 
Beijing IPE   2    2 
Hollycon   1    - 
           
   $2,301   $5,353 

 

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Transactions with related parties

 

Purchases of goods and services from:

 

   Year ended June 30, 
   2016   2017   2018 
             
Electric Motor  $354   $29   $77 
Hollycon   -    8    16 
Hollysys Machine   555    749    - 
                
   $909   $786   $93 

 

Sales of goods and integrated solutions to:

 

   Year ended June 30, 
   2016   2017   2018 
             
China Techenergy  $3,657   $10,842   $11,519 
Hollycon   -    108    225 
Shenhua Information   847    765    86 
Hollysys Machine   235    167    - 
Beijing IPE   -    7    - 
                
   $4,739   $11,889   $11,830 

 

Operating lease income from:

 

   Year ended June 30, 
   2016   2017   2018 
             
Hollycon   -    602    731 
Hollysys Machine   40    -    - 
                
   $40   $602   $731 

 

The Company sells automation control systems to China Techenergy which is used for non-safety operations control in the nuclear power industry. China Techenergy incorporates the Company’s non-safety automation control systems with their proprietary safety automated control systems to provide an overall automation and control system for nuclear power stations in China. The Company is not a party to the integrated sales contracts executed between China Techenergy and its customers. The Company’s pro rata shares of the intercompany profits and losses are eliminated until realized through a sale to outside parties, as if China Techenergy were a consolidated subsidiary.

 

The Company sells automation control systems to Shenhua Information which is used for operations control in the information automation industry. Shenhua Information incorporates the Company’s automation control systems with their proprietary automated remote control systems to provide an overall automation and control system to its customers. The Company is not a party to the integrated sales contracts executed between Shenhua Information and its customers. The Company’s pro rata shares of the intercompany profits and losses are eliminated until realized through a sale to an outside party as if Shenhua Information were a consolidated subsidiary.

 

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The Company engages Hollysys Machine to sell the Company’s products to end customers. The Company pays commission to Hollysys Machine in exchange for its services. The amount of the commission is determined based on the value of the products sold by Hollysys Machine during the year.

 

The Company entered into an operating lease agreement with Hollycon to lease part of its one building located in Beijing. The lease term is for 1 year from the commencement date of July 1, 2017 to June 30, 2018.

 

Amounts due from and due to the related parties relating to the above transactions are unsecured, non-interest bearing and repayable on demand.

 

C.Interests of Experts and Counsel

 

Not applicable.

 

ITEM 8.FINANCIAL INFORMATION

 

A.Consolidated Statements and Other Financial Information

 

We have appended consolidated financial statements filed as part of this Annual Report. See Item 18 “Financial Statements.”

 

Legal Proceedings

 

We are currently not a party to any material legal or administrative proceedings, and we are not aware of threatened material legal or administrative proceedings against us.  We may from time to time become a party to various legal or administrative proceedings arising in the ordinary course of our business.

 

Dividend Policy

 

On August 11, 2016, the Board of Directors approved a regular cash dividend policy pursuant to which future cash dividends are expected to be paid to holders of the Company’s ordinary shares on an annual basis out of funds legally available for such purpose. However, the declaration and payment of future dividends will be at the discretion of the Board, and will depend upon many factors, including the Company’s financial condition, earnings, and capital requirements of its businesses, legal requirements, regulatory constraints, industry practice, and other factors that the Board deems relevant. As a BVI company, we may only declare and pay dividends if our directors are satisfied, on reasonable grounds, that immediately after the distribution (i) the value of our assets will exceed our liabilities and (ii) we will be able to pay our debts as they fall due. On November 11, 2016, Company paid 2016 annual dividend of $0.2 per ordinary share. On November 6, 2017, Company paid 2017 annual dividend of $0.12 per ordinary share.

 

Notwithstanding the understanding that earnings will be accumulated, our ability to pay dividends depends substantially on the receipt of dividends to us by our subsidiaries.

 

For the PRC subsidiaries, each of them may pay dividends only out of its accumulated distributable profits, if any, determined in accordance with its articles of association and the accounting standards and regulations in China. Pursuant to applicable PRC laws and regulations, 10% of after-tax profits of each of our consolidated PRC entities are required to be set aside in a statutory surplus reserve fund annually until the reserve balance reaches 50% of such PRC entity’s registered capital. Allocations from these statutory surplus reserves may only be used for specific purposes and are not distributable to us in the form of loans, advances, or cash dividends.

 

Under the New EIT Law and its implementation rules issued by the PRC State Council, both of which became effective on January 1, 2008, dividends from our PRC subsidiaries to us may be subject to a withholding tax at the rate of 10% if the dividend is derived from profits generated after January 1, 2008. If we are deemed to be a PRC resident enterprise, the withholding tax may be exempted, but in such a case we will be subject to a 25% tax on our global income, and our non-PRC investors may be subject to PRC income tax withholding. For a more detailed discussion of the New EIT Law, see Item 10 - Additional Information, Subpart E, Taxation in China of this Form 20-F.

 

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For the Singapore and Malaysia subsidiaries, each of them may pay dividends only out of its profits based on the articles of association and the Companies Act in Singapore and Malaysia. There is no limit to the amount of dividend payable as long as there are sufficient profits. There is no withholding tax imposed on a Singapore and Malaysia company paying dividends to a company located outside of Singapore and Malaysia upon remittance.

 

For the Qatar subsidiary, it may pay dividends only out of its profits based on the articles of association and the Companies Act in Qatar. Pursuant to applicable Qatari laws and regulations, 10% of after-tax profits are required to be set aside in a statutory surplus reserve fund annually until the reserve balance reaches 50% of registered capital. The statutory reserve can be used to cover the losses of the companies or to increase the capital of the companies with a decision by the general assembly. There is no withholding tax imposed on the Qatar company paying dividends to parent company located in Singapore.

 

B.Significant Changes

 

We have not experienced any significant changes since the date of our audited consolidated financial statements included in this Annual Report.

 

ITEM 9.THE OFFER AND LISTING

 

A.Offer and Listing Details

 

Since August 1, 2008, our ordinary shares have been listed on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the symbol “HOLI”. The following table provides the high and low reported closing market prices of our ordinary shares as reported by Yahoo! Finance for the periods indicated.

  

   Nasdaq Price per Share 
   High   Low 
Annual Market Prices(1)  $      
Fiscal Year 2014  $24.94    11.79 
Fiscal Year 2015  $26.84    17.18 
Fiscal Year 2016  $23.49    15.21 
Fiscal Year 2017  $23.21    15.25 
Fiscal Year 2018  $27.61    16.41 
           
Quarterly Market Prices          
First Quarter 2017 ended September 30, 2016  $23.21    16.95 
Second Quarter 2017 ended December 31, 2016  $23.09    17.89 
Third Quarter 2017 ended March 31, 2017  $19.18    16.56 
Fourth Quarter 2017 ended June 30, 2017  $17.28    15.25 
First Quarter 2018 ended September 30, 2017  $21.61    16.41 
Second Quarter 2018 ended December 31, 2017  $25.96    20.87 
Third Quarter 2018 ended March 31, 2018  $27.61    22.74 
Fourth Quarter 2018 ended June 30, 2018  $25.42    21.17 
           
Monthly Market Prices          
March 2018  $27.61    24.30 
April 2018  $25.17    21.96 
May 2018  $25.42    21.73 
June 2018  $24.38    21.17 
July 2018  $23.62    21.46 
August 2018  $23.66    20.75 
September 2018 (through September 14, 2018)  $21.11    19.83 

  

(1) All periods end June 30 of the stated year, unless otherwise noted.

 

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B.Plan of Distribution

 

Not applicable

 

C.Markets

 

See our disclosures under “Item 9. A. Offer and Listing.”

 

D.Selling Shareholders

 

Not Applicable

 

E.Dilution

 

Not Applicable

 

F.Expenses of Issue

 

Not Applicable

 

ITEM 10.ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

 

A.Share Capital

 

Not applicable

 

B.Memorandum and Articles of Association

 

The following represents a summary of certain key provisions of the Company’s amended and restated memorandum and articles of association. The summary does not purport to be a summary of all of the provisions of our memorandum and articles of association and of all relevant provisions of BVI law governing the management and regulation of BVI companies.

 

Register

 

The Company was incorporated in the BVI on February 6, 2006 under the BVI Business Companies Act (the “Act”).  The Company filed a Certificate of Change of Name to change its name from HLS Systems International, Inc. to Hollysys Automation Technologies Ltd. on July 17, 2009. On May 26, 2016, the Board of Directors the Company approved the amended and restated memorandum and articles of association (the “Amended and Restated M&A”) to exclude the application of Sections 60 and 61 of the Act. The Amended and Restated M&A became effective upon the registration by the Registrar of Corporate Affairs of the British Virgin Islands on May 27, 2016. The Board of Directors believes that such change is desirable and to the benefit of all of the shareholders of the Company because it will provide the Company with increased flexibility of action to purchase its own shares from time to time based on market conditions, stock prices, and other factors without the delay and expense involved in offering to purchase share from all shareholders or obtaining written consent on such purchase from the shareholders as otherwise required under Sections 60 and 61 of the Act. The Amended and Restated M&A authorizes the issuance of up to 100,000,000 ordinary shares of $0.001 par value, and (ii) 90,000,000 preferred shares of $0.001 par value.

 

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Objects and Purposes

 

The Company’s Amended and Restated M&A grants the Company full power and capacity to carry on or undertake any business or activity and do any act or enter into any transaction not prohibited by the Act or any other BVI legislation.

 

Directors

 

A director must, immediately after becoming aware of the fact that he is interested in a transaction entered into or to be entered into by us, disclose such interest to the board of directors, unless (i) the transaction or proposed transaction is between the director and the company and (ii) the transaction or proposed transaction is or is to be entered into in the ordinary course of our business and on usual terms and conditions. The director who is interested in a transaction entered into or to be entered into by the Company may (i) vote on a matter relating to the transaction; (ii) attend a meeting of directors at which a matter relating to the transaction arises and be included in the quorum; and (iii) sign a document on behalf of the Company, or do any other thing in his capacity as a director, that relates to the transaction.

 

The directors may fix their compensation for services rendered to us.

 

By a resolution of directors, the directors may exercise all our powers to borrow money, mortgage or charge our undertakings and property, issue debentures, denture stock and other securities whenever money is borrowed or as security for any debt, liability or obligation occurred by us or of any third party.

 

Each director holds office until his successor takes office or until his earlier death, resignation or removal by the members or a resolution passed by the majority of the remaining directors.

 

A director shall not require a share qualification.

 

Directors may only be removed for cause by the shareholders.

 

Rights and Obligations of Shareholders

 

Dividends

 

Subject to the Act, the directors may, by resolution of directors, declare dividends and distributions by the Company to members and authorize payment on the dividends or distributions so long as that immediately after the distribution, the value of the Company’s assets exceeds its liabilities and the Company is able to pay its debts as they fall due.  Any distribution payable in respect of a share which has remained unclaimed for three years from the date when it became due for payment shall, if the board of the directors so resolves, be forfeited and cease to remain owing by the Company.  The directors may, before authorizing any distribution, set aside out of the profits of the Company such sum as they think proper as a reserve fund, and may invest the sum so set apart as a reserve fund upon such securities as they may select.

 

The holder of each ordinary share has the right to an equal share in any distribution paid by the Company.

 

Voting Rights

 

Each ordinary share confers on the shareholder the right to one vote at a meeting of the members or on any resolution of members on all matters before the shareholders of the Company.

 

Rights in the event of winding up

 

The holder of each ordinary share is entitled to an equal share in the distribution of the surplus assets of the Company on a winding up.

 

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Redemption

 

The Company may purchase, redeem or otherwise acquire and hold its own shares with the consent of members whose shares are to be purchased, redeemed or otherwise acquired unless the Company is permitted by the Act or any provision of the Amended and Restated M&A to purchase, redeem or otherwise acquire the shares without their consent.

 

The Company may purchase, redeem or otherwise acquire its shares at a price lower than the fair value if permitted by, and then only in accordance with, the terms of the Amended and Restated M&A or a written agreement for the subscription for the shares to be purchased, redeemed or otherwise acquired.

 

Changes in the rights of shareholders

 

The rights attached to any class of shares (unless otherwise provided by the terms of issue of the shares of that class) may, whether or not the Company is being wound-up, be varied with the consent in writing of not less than three-fourths of the issued shares of that class and the holders of not less than three-fourths of the issued shares of any other class of shares which may be affected by such variation.

 

Meetings

 

The directors may convene meetings of the members of the Company at such times and in such manner and places as the directors consider necessary or desirable. A meeting of members must be held if requested by members holding at least 30% of the voting rights in respect of the matter for which the meeting is being held. No less than seven days' notice of meetings is required to be given to members.

 

A meeting of members is properly constituted if at the commencement of the meeting the holder or holders present in person or by proxy entitled to exercise at least fifty percent of the voting rights of the shares of each class or series of shares entitled to vote as a class or series thereon and the same proportion of the votes of the remaining shares entitled to vote thereon.

 

A member shall be deemed to be present at the meeting if he participates by telephone or other electronic means and all members participating in the meeting are able to hear each other.

 

A resolution of members may be approved at a duly constituted meeting of members by the affirmative vote of a simple majority of the votes of those members entitled to vote and voting on the resolution.

 

A meeting of members held in contravention of the requirement to give notice is valid if members holding not less than 90% of:(a) the total voting rights on all matters to be considered at the meeting; or (b) the votes of each class or series of shares where members are entitled to vote thereon as a class or series together with an absolute majority of the remaining votes, have waived notice of the meeting. Attendance at the meeting is deemed to constitute waiver.

 

The inadvertent failure of the directors to give notice of a meeting to a member, or the fact that a member has not received notice, does not invalidate the meeting.

 

A member may be represented at a meeting of members by a proxy who may speak and vote on behalf of the member.  A written instrument giving the proxy such authority must be produced at the place appointed for the meeting before the time for holding the meeting at which such person proposes to vote.

 

Limitations on Ownership of Securities

 

There are no limitations on the right of non-residents or foreign persons to own the Company’s securities imposed by BVI law or by the Amended and Restated M&A

 

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Change in Control of Company

 

While directors of the Company may be appointed by the members or directors for such terms as may be determined at the time of such appointment, and may be removed by resolution of directors with or without cause, directors may not be removed by the members except for cause.

 

 The unissued shares of the Company are at the disposal of the directors who may offer, allot, grant options over or otherwise dispose of them to such persons at such times and for such consideration, being not less than the par value of the shares being disposed of, and upon such terms and conditions as the directors may determine.

 

Ownership Threshold

 

There are no provisions governing the ownership threshold above which shareholder ownership must be disclosed.

 

Changes in Capital

 

Subject to the provisions of the Act, we may, by a resolution of directors or members, amend the Amended and Restated M&A to increase or decrease the number of shares authorized to be issued. The directors of the Company may, by resolution, authorize a distribution (including a capital distribution) by the Company at a time, of an amount, and to any members they think fit if they are satisfied, on reasonable grounds, that the Company will, immediately after the distribution, satisfy the solvency test. The solvency test is satisfied if the value of the Company’s assets exceeds its liabilities, and the Company is able to pay its debts as they fall due.

 

Differences in Corporate Law

 

The company law of the BVI differs from laws applicable to U.S. corporations and their shareholders.  Set forth below is a summary of the significant differences between the provisions of the companies law applicable to us and the laws applicable to companies incorporated in the United States and their shareholders.

 

Protection for minority shareholders

 

Under the laws of most U.S. jurisdictions, majority and controlling shareholders of a company generally have certain “fiduciary” responsibilities to the minority shareholders.  Corporate actions taken by majority and controlling shareholders that are unreasonable and materially detrimental to the interests of minority shareholders may be declared null and void.  Minority shareholders may have less protection for their rights under BVI law than they would have under U.S. law.

 

Powers of directors

 

Unlike most U.S. jurisdictions, the directors of a BVI company, subject in certain cases to court’s approvals but without shareholders’ approval, may implement the sale, transfer, exchange or disposition of any asset, property, part of the business, or securities of the company, with the exception that shareholder approval is required for the disposition of over 50% in the value of the total assets of the company.

 

Conflict of interests

 

Similar to the laws of most U.S. jurisdictions, when a director becomes aware of the fact that he has an interest in a transaction which we are to enter into, he must disclose it to our board. However, with sufficient disclosure of interest in relation to that transaction, the director who is interested in a transaction entered into or to be entered into by the Company may (i) vote on a matter relating to the transaction; (ii) attend a meeting of directors at which a matter relating to the transaction arises and be included in the quorum; and (iii) sign a document on behalf of us, or do any other thing in his capacity as a director, that relates to the transaction.

 

Written consent and cumulative voting

 

Similar to the laws of most U.S. jurisdictions, under the BVI law, shareholders are permitted to approve matters by way of written resolution in place of a formal meeting. BVI law does not make a specific reference to cumulative voting, and our current Amended and Restated M&A have no provision authorizing cumulative voting.

 

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Takeover provisions

 

On August 27, 2010, our Board of Directors adopted the 2010 Rights Plan. In connection with the 2010 Rights Plan, the Board of Directors declared a dividend distribution of one “Right” for each outstanding ordinary share to shareholders of record at the close of business on August 27, 2010, effective as of September 27, 2010. Each Right entitles the shareholder to buy one share of our Class A Preferred Stock at a price of $160.  Unless terminated earlier by our Board of Directors, the 2010 Rights Plan will expire on September 27, 2020.

 

Initially, the Rights will be attached to all certificates representing ordinary shares then outstanding, and no separate Rights certificates or stock statements will be distributed or provided.  The Rights will separate from the ordinary shares and become exercisable if a person or group announces an acquisition of 20% or more of our outstanding ordinary shares, or announces commencement of a tender offer for 20% or more of the ordinary shares.  In that event, the Rights permit shareholders, other than the acquiring person, to purchase our ordinary shares having a market value of twice the exercise price of the Rights, in lieu of the Class A Preferred Stock.  In addition, in the event of certain business combinations, the Rights permit the purchase of the ordinary shares of an acquiring person at a 50% discount. Rights held by the acquiring person become null and void in each case.

 

The 2010 Rights Plan is designed to ensure that all of our shareholders receive fair and equal treatment in the event of any proposed takeover of us and to guard against partial tender offers, open market accumulations and other abusive or coercive tactics to gain control of us without paying all shareholders a control premium. The Rights will cause substantial dilution to a person or group that acquires 20% or more of our stock on terms not approved by the our Board of Directors, but the Rights should not interfere with any merger or other business combination approved by the Board of Directors at any time prior to the first date that a person or group has become an acquiring person.

 

Shareholder’s access to corporate records

 

A shareholder is entitled, on giving written notice to the Company, to inspect the Company’s (i) Memorandum and Articles of Association; (ii) register of members; (iii) register of directors; and (iv)minutes of meetings and resolutions of members and of those classes of members of which the shareholder is a member.

 

The directors may, if they are satisfied that it would be contrary to the Company’s interests to allow a member to inspect any document listed above (or any part thereof), refuse the member to inspect the document or limit the inspection of the document.  Our board may also authorize a member to review the Company account if requested.

 

Indemnification

 

Under BVI law and our Amended and Restated M&A, we may indemnify against all expenses, including legal fees, and against all judgements, fines and amounts paid in settlement and reasonably incurred in connection with legal, administrative or investigative proceedings any person who: (a) is or was a party or is threatened to be made a party to any threatened, pending or completed proceedings, whether civil, criminal, administrative or investigative, by reason of the fact that the person is or was a director of the Company; or (b) is or was, at the request of the Company, serving as a director of, or in any other capacity is or was acting for, another body corporate or a partnership, joint venture, trust or other enterprise.

 

To be entitled to indemnification, these persons must have acted honestly and in good faith and in what he believes to be the best interest of the Company, and they must have had no reasonable cause to believe their conduct was unlawful. Furthermore, such a person must be indemnified by the Company if he has been successful in the defense of any proceedings.

 

Insofar as indemnification for liabilities arising under the Securities Act may be permitted to directors, officers or persons controlling us under the foregoing provisions, we have been advised that in the opinion of the SEC, such indemnification is against public policy as expressed in the Securities Act and is therefore unenforceable.

 

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Mergers and similar arrangements

 

Under the laws of the BVI, two or more companies may merge or consolidate in accordance with Section 170 of the Act. A merger means the merging of two or more constituent companies into one of the constituent companies, and a consolidation means the uniting of two or more constituent companies into a new company. In order to merge or consolidate, the directors of each constituent company must approve a written plan of merger or consolidation which must be authorized by a resolution of shareholders.

 

Shareholders not otherwise entitled to vote on the merger or consolidation may still acquire the right to vote if the plan of merger or consolidation contains any provision which, if proposed as an amendment to the memorandum or articles of association, would entitle them to vote as a class or series on the proposed amendment. In any event, all shareholders must be given a copy of the plan of merger or consolidation irrespective of whether they are entitled to vote at the meeting or consent to the written resolution to approve the plan of merger or consolidation.

 

The shareholders of the constituent companies are not required to receive shares of the surviving or consolidated company but may receive debt obligations or other securities of the surviving or consolidated company, or other assets, or a combination thereof. Further, some or all of the shares of a class or series may be converted into a kind of asset while the other shares of the same class or series may receive a different kind of asset. As such, not all the shares of a class or series must receive the same kind of consideration.

 

After the plan of merger or consolidation has been approved by the directors and authorized by a resolution of the shareholders, articles of merger or consolidation are executed by each company and filed with the Registrar of Corporate Affairs in the BVI.

 

Dissenter Rights

 

A shareholder may dissent from a mandatory redemption of his shares, an arrangement (if permitted by the court), a merger (unless the shareholder was a shareholder of the surviving company prior to the merger and continues to hold the same or similar shares after the merger) and a consolidation. A shareholder properly exercising his dissent rights is entitled to payment in cash of the fair value of his shares.

 

A shareholder dissenting from a merger or consolidation must object in writing to the merger or consolidation before the vote by the shareholders on the merger or consolidation, unless notice of the meeting was not given to the shareholder. If the merger or consolidation is approved by the shareholders, the company must within 20 days give notice of this fact to each shareholder who gave written objection, and to each shareholder who did not receive notice of the meeting. Such shareholders then have 20 days to give their written election in the form specified by the Act to dissent from the merger or consolidation, provided that in the case of a merger, the 20 days starts when the plan of merger is delivered to the shareholder.

 

Upon giving notice of his election to dissent, a shareholder ceases to have any rights of a shareholder except the right to be paid the fair value of his shares. As such, the merger or consolidation may proceed in the ordinary course notwithstanding the dissent.

 

Within seven days of the later of the delivery of the notice of election to dissent and the effective date of the merger or consolidation, the company must make a written offer to each dissenting shareholder to purchase his shares at a specified price that the company determines to be their fair value. The company and the shareholder then have 30 days to agree upon the price. If the company and a shareholder fail to agree on the price within the 30 days, then the company and the shareholder shall each designate an appraiser and these two appraisers shall designate a third appraiser. These three appraisers shall fix the fair value of the shares as of the close of business on the day before the shareholders approved the transaction without taking into account any change in value as a result of the transaction.

 

Under BVI law, shareholders are not entitled to dissenters’ rights in relation to liquidation.

 

Shareholders’ suits

 

Similar to the laws of most U.S. jurisdictions, BVI law permits derivative actions against its directors. However, the circumstances under which such actions may be brought, and the procedures and defenses available may result in the rights of shareholders of a BVI company being more limited than those of shareholders of a company incorporated and/or existing in the United States.

 

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The High Court of the BVI may, on the application of a shareholder of a company, grant leave to that shareholder to bring proceedings in the name and on behalf of that company, or intervene in proceedings to which the company is a party for the purpose of continuing, defending or discontinuing the proceedings on behalf of the company. In determining whether to grant leave, the High Court of the BVI must take into account (i) whether the shareholder is acting in good faith; (ii) whether the derivative action is in the interests of the company taking account of the views of the company’s directors on commercial matters; (iii) whether the proceedings are likely to succeed; (iv) the costs of the proceedings in relation to the relief likely to be obtained; and (v) whether an alternative remedy to the derivative claim is available.

 

Leave to bring or intervene in proceedings may be granted only if the court is satisfied that (i) the company does not intend to bring, diligently continue or defend, or discontinue the proceedings, as the case may be; or (ii) it is in the interests of the company that the conduct of the proceedings should not be left to the directors or to the determination of the shareholders as a whole.

 

C.Material Contracts

 

Except for the following, we have not entered into any material contracts other than in the ordinary course of business and other than those described in Item 4, “Information on the Company,” Item 7, “Major Shareholders and Related Party Transactions,” or Item 5. Operating And Financial Review And Prospects – Contractual Obligations,” or elsewhere in this annual report.

 

On April 3, 2013, Beijing Hollysys entered into an operating lease agreement to lease out one of its buildings located in Beijing. The lease term is 10 years from September 1, 2013 to August 31, 2023. The annual minimum lease payment receivable after five years are subject to renegotiation in case the Chinese consumer price index published by the government exceeds 5%.

 

On May 30, 2014, the Company entered into a convertible loan agreement with International Finance Corporation, an international organization established by Articles of Agreement among its member countries including the British Virgin Islands ("IFC"), under which the Company will borrow $20,000,000 from IFC (the “Convertible Bond”) with an interest rate of 2.1% per annum and commitment fee of 0.5% per annum paid in rear semi-annually. The Company received the loan disbursement on August 30, 2014, and the loan interest started accumulating since then.

 

D.Exchange Controls

 

BVI Exchange Controls

 

There are no material exchange controls restrictions on payment of dividends, interest or other payments to the holders of our ordinary or preferred shares or on the conduct of our operations in the BVI, where we were incorporated. There are no material BVI laws that impose any material exchange controls on us or that affect the payment of dividends, interest or other payments to nonresident holders of our ordinary or preferred shares. BVI law and our Amended and Restated Memorandum and Articles of Association do not impose any material limitations on the right of non-residents or foreign owners to hold or vote our ordinary or preferred shares.

 

Exchange Controls in China

 

Pursuant to applicable PRC regulations on foreign currency exchange, Renminbi is freely convertible only to the extent of current account items, such as trade-related receipts and payments, interest and dividends. Capital account items, such as direct equity investments, loans and repatriation of investment, unless expressly exempted by laws and regulations, require the prior registration at designated foreign exchange banks for conversion of Renminbi into a foreign currency, such as U.S. dollars. Payments for transactions that take place within the PRC must be made in Renminbi. Domestic companies or individuals can repatriate foreign currency payments received from abroad, or deposit these payments abroad subject to the requirement that such payments by repatriated within a certain period of time. Foreign-invested enterprises may retain foreign exchange in accounts with designated foreign exchange banks. Foreign currencies received for current account items can be either retained or sold to financial institutions that have foreign exchange settlement or sales business without prior approval from the State Administration for Foreign Exchange, subject to certain regulations. Foreign exchange income under capital account can be retained or sold to financial institutions that have foreign exchange settlement and sales business, with prior approval from the State Administration for Foreign Exchange, unless otherwise provided.

 

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On February 28, 2015, the SAFE promulgated the Notice on Further Simplifying and Improving the Administration of the Foreign Exchange Concerning Direct Investment, or SAFE Circular 13. After SAFE Circular 13 became effective on June 1, 2015, instead of applying for approvals regarding foreign exchange registrations of foreign direct investment and overseas direct investment from SAFE, entities and individuals will be required to apply for such foreign exchange registrations from qualified banks. The qualified banks, under the supervision of the SAFE, will directly examine the applications and conduct the registration.

 

In March 2015, SAFE promulgated the Circular on Reforming the Management Approach Regarding the Foreign Exchange Capital Settlement of Foreign-invested Enterprises, or SAFE Circular No. 19, which effected as of June 1, 2015. SAFE Circular No. 19 provides that, among other things, a foreign-invested company may convert foreign currency capital in its capital account into RMB on a “at will” basis. On June 9, 2016, SAFE promulgated the Circular on Reforming and Regulating Policies on the Control over Foreign Exchange Settlement of Capital Accounts, or SAFE Circular No. 16, to further expand and strengthen such “at will” conversion reform under SAFE Circular No. 19. SAFE Circular No. 16 provides an integrated standard for conversion of foreign exchange under capital account items on an “at will” basis which applies to all enterprises registered in the PRC. Pursuant to SAFE Circular No. 16, in addition to foreign currency capital, enterprises registered in the PRC may also convert their foreign debts, as well as repatriated funds raised through overseas listing, from foreign currency to RMB on an “at will” basis. SAFE Circular No. 16 reiterates that the RMB funds so converted shall not be used for the purpose of, whether directly or indirectly, (i) paying expenditures out of the ordinary course of business or prohibited by laws or regulations; (ii) making securities investment or other investments (except for banks’ principal-secured products); (iii) extending loans to non-affiliated enterprises (except as expressly permitted in the business license); and (iv) purchasing non-self-used real properties (except for real estate enterprises).

 

E.Taxation

 

The following is a general summary of certain material BVI, China and U.S. federal income tax considerations.  The discussion is not intended to be, nor should it be construed as, legal or tax advice to any particular prospective shareholder.  The discussion is based on laws and relevant interpretations thereof in effect as of the date hereof, all of which are subject to change or different interpretations, possibly with retroactive effect.

 

BVI Taxation

 

The BVI does not impose a withholding tax on dividends paid to holders of our ordinary shares, nor does the BVI levy any capital gains or income taxes on us. Further, a holder of our ordinary shares who is not a resident of the BVI is exempt from the BVI income tax on dividends paid with respect to the ordinary shares. Holders of ordinary shares are not subject to the BVI income tax on gains realized on the sale or disposition of the ordinary shares.

 

Our ordinary shares are not subject to transfer taxes, stamp duties or similar charges in the BVI. However, as a company incorporated under the 2004 Act, we are required to pay the BVI government an annual license fee based on the number of shares we are authorized to issue.

 

There is no income tax treaty or convention currently in effect between the United States and the BVI.

 

Taxation in China

 

We are a holding company incorporated in the BVI, which indirectly holds our equity interests in our PRC operating subsidiaries. The EIT Law and its implementation rules, both of which became effective as of January 1, 2008, provide that a PRC enterprise is subject to a standard income tax rate of 25% and China-sourced income of foreign enterprises, such as dividends paid by a PRC subsidiary to its overseas parent, will normally be subject to PRC withholding tax at a rate of 10%, unless there are applicable treaties between the overseas parent’s jurisdiction of incorporation and China to reduce such rate.

 

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Under the Arrangement between the Mainland and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with respect to Taxes on Income, or the Double Taxation Arrangement, effective as of January 1, 2007, such dividend withholding tax rate is reduced to 5% if a Hong Kong resident enterprise owns over 25% of the PRC company distributing the dividends. Under the aforesaid arrangement, any dividends that our PRC operating subsidiaries pay to their Hong Kong holding companies may be subject to a withholding tax at the rate of 5% if they are not considered to be a PRC “resident enterprise” as described below. However, if the Hong Kong holdings companies are not considered to be the “beneficial owner” of such dividends under the Notice Regarding Interpretation and Recognition of Beneficial Owners under Tax Treaties promulgated by the State Administration of Taxation on October 27, 2009 (and not a PRC “resident enterprise”), such dividends would be subject to the withholding tax rate of 10%. The withholding tax rate of 5% or 10% applicable will have a significant impact on the amount of dividends to be received by us and ultimately by shareholders.

 

According to the Notice Regarding Interpretation and Recognition of Beneficial Owners under Tax Treaties, the term “beneficial owner” refers to a person who has the right to own and dispose of the income and the rights or properties generated from the said income. The “beneficial owner” may be an individual, a company or any other organization which is usually engaged in substantial business operations. A conduit company is not a “beneficial owner.” The term “conduit company” refers to a company which is usually established for purposes of dodging or reducing taxes, and transferring or accumulating profits. Such a company is only registered in the country of domicile to satisfy the organizational form as required by law, but it does not engage in such substantial business operations as manufacturing, distribution and management.

 

In addition to the changes to the current tax structure, under the EIT Law, an enterprise established outside of China with “de facto management bodies” within China is considered a resident enterprise and will normally be subject to an EIT of 25% on its global income. The implementing rules define the term “de facto management bodies” as “an establishment that exercises, in substance, overall management and control over the production, business, personnel, accounting, etc., of a Chinese enterprise.”

 

It remains unclear whether the PRC tax authorities would require or permit our overseas registered entities to be treated as PRC resident enterprises. We do not currently consider our company to be a PRC resident enterprise. However, if the PRC tax authorities determine that we are a “resident enterprise” for PRC enterprise income tax purposes, a number of unfavorable PRC tax consequences could follow. First, we may be subject to the enterprise income tax at a rate of 25% on our worldwide taxable income as well as PRC enterprise income tax reporting obligations. In our case, this would mean that income such as interest on offering proceeds and non-China source income would be subject to PRC enterprise income tax at a rate of 25%. Second, although under the EIT Law and its implementing rules dividends paid to us from our PRC subsidiaries would qualify as “tax-exempt income,” we cannot guarantee that such dividends will not be subject to a 10% withholding tax, as the PRC foreign exchange control authorities, which enforce the withholding tax, have not yet issued guidance with respect to the processing of outbound remittances to entities that are treated as resident enterprises for PRC enterprise income tax purposes. Finally, it is possible that future guidance issued with respect to the new “resident enterprise” classification could result in a situation in which a 10% withholding tax is imposed on dividends we pay to our non-PRC shareholders and with respect to gains derived by our non-PRC shareholders from transferring our shares.

 

United States Federal Taxation

 

The following is a discussion of certain material U.S. federal income tax consequences of the acquisition, ownership and disposition of our ordinary shares by U.S. holders (as defined below). It does not purport to be a comprehensive description of all of the tax considerations that may be relevant to a particular person’s situation. The discussion applies only to U.S. holders that hold their ordinary shares as capital assets (generally property held for investment) within the meaning of Section 1221 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended, or the Code. This discussion is based on the Code, income tax regulations promulgated there under, judicial positions, published positions of the Internal Revenue Service, or the IRS, and other applicable authorities, all as in effect as of the date hereof and all of which are subject to change, possibly with retroactive effect. This discussion is general in nature and is not exhaustive of all possible tax considerations, nor does the discussion address any state, local or foreign tax considerations or any U.S. tax considerations (e.g., estate or gift tax) other than U.S. federal income tax considerations, that may be applicable to particular holders.

 

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This discussion does not address all aspects of U.S. federal income taxation that may be relevant in light of particular circumstances, nor does it address the U.S. federal income tax consequences to persons who are subject to special rules under U.S. federal income tax law, including:

 

banks, insurance companies or other financial institutions;
   
persons subject to the alternative minimum tax;
   
tax-exempt organizations;
   
controlled foreign corporations, passive foreign investment companies and corporations that accumulate earnings to avoid United States federal income tax;
   
certain former citizens or long-term residents of the United States;
   
dealers in securities or currencies;
   
traders in securities that elect to use a mark-to-market method of accounting for their securities holdings;
   
persons that own, or are deemed to own, more than five percent of our capital stock;
   
holders who acquired our stock as compensation or pursuant to the exercise of a stock option;
   
persons who hold our common stock as a position in a hedging transaction, “straddle,” or other risk reduction transaction; or
   
persons who do not hold our ordinary shares as a capital asset (within the meaning of Section 1221 of the Code).

 

For purposes of this discussion, a U.S. holder is (i) an individual who is a citizen or resident of the United States for U.S. federal income tax purposes; (ii) a corporation, or other entity treated as a corporation for U.S. federal income tax purposes, created or organized in or under the laws of the United States (or treated as such under applicable U.S. tax laws), any state thereof, or the District of Columbia; (iii) an estate the income of which is subject to U.S. federal income tax regardless of its source; or (iv) a trust if (a) a U.S. court is able to exercise primary supervision over the administration of the trust and one or more U.S. persons have the authority to control all substantial decisions of the trust, or (b) it has a valid election in effect under applicable law and regulations to be treated as a U.S. person for U.S. federal income tax purposes. A non-U.S. holder is a holder that is neither a U.S. holder nor a partnership or other entity classified as a partnership for U.S. federal income tax purposes.

 

In the case of a partnership or entity classified as a partnership for U.S. federal income tax purposes, the U.S. federal income tax treatment of a partner generally will depend on the status of the partner and the activities of the partnership. Partners of partnerships should consult their tax advisors regarding the U.S. federal income tax consequences to them of the merger or of the ownership and disposition of our ordinary shares.

 

Distributions

 

On August 11, 2016, the Board of Directors approved a regular cash dividend policy pursuant to which future cash dividends are expected to be paid to holders of the Company’s ordinary shares on an annual basis out of funds legally available for such purpose. The gross amount of such distributions will be included in the gross income of the U.S. holder as dividend income on the date of receipt to the extent that the distribution is paid out of current or accumulated earnings and profits, as determined under U.S. federal income tax principles. Such dividends will be eligible for the dividends-received deduction allowed to corporations in respect of dividends received from other U.S. corporations. Dividends received by non-corporate U.S. holders, including individuals, may be subject to reduced rates of taxation under current law. A U.S. holder may be eligible to claim a foreign tax credit with respect to any PRC withholding tax imposed on dividends paid by us. However, the foreign tax credit rules are complex, and their application in connection with Section 7874 of the Code and the Agreement Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the People’s Republic of China for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Tax Evasion with Respect to Taxes on Income, or the U.S.-PRC Tax Treaty, is not entirely clear at this time. U.S. holders should consult their own tax advisors with respect to any benefits they may be entitled to under the foreign tax credit rules and the U.S.-PRC Tax Treaty.

 

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To the extent that dividends paid on our ordinary shares exceed current and accumulated earnings and profits, the distributions will be treated first as a tax-free return of tax basis on our ordinary shares, and to the extent that the amount of the distribution exceeds tax basis, the excess will be treated as gain from the disposition of those ordinary shares. 

 

Sale or Other Disposition

 

U.S. holders of our ordinary shares will recognize taxable gain or loss on any sale, exchange, or other taxable disposition of ordinary shares equal to the difference between the amounts realized for the ordinary shares and the U.S. holder’s tax basis in the ordinary shares. This gain or loss generally will be capital gain or loss. Under current law, non-corporate U.S. holders, including individuals, are eligible for reduced tax rates if the ordinary shares have been held for more than one year. The deductibility of capital losses is subject to limitations. A U.S. holder may be eligible to claim a foreign tax credit with respect to any PRC withholding tax imposed on gain from the sale or other disposition of ordinary shares. However, the foreign tax credit rules are complex, and their application in connection with Section 7874 of the Code and the U.S.-PRC Tax Treaty is not entirely clear at this time. U.S. holders should consult their own tax advisors with respect to any benefits they may be entitled to under the foreign tax credit rules and the U.S.-PRC Tax Treaty.

 

Unearned Income Medicare Contribution

 

Certain U.S. holders who are individuals, trusts or estates are required to pay an additional 3.8% Medicare tax on, among other things, dividends on and capital gains from the sale or other disposition of shares of stock for taxable years beginning after December 31, 2013. U.S. holders should consult their own advisors regarding the effect, if any, of this legislation on their ownership and disposition of our ordinary shares.

 

Passive Foreign Investment Company Rules.

 

In general, a foreign corporation will be a passive foreign investment company (“PFIC”) for any taxable year in which (1) 75% or more of its gross income consists of passive income (such as dividends, interest, rents royalties and certain gains) or (2) 50% or more of the average quarterly value of its assets consists of assets that produce, or are held for the production of, passive income.

 

Based on our current income and assets and the value of our outstanding ordinary shares, we do not expect to be classified as a PFIC for our taxable year ended June 30, 2018 or in the foreseeable future. While we do not anticipate becoming a PFIC, changes in the nature of our income or assets, or fluctuations in the market price of our ordinary shares, may cause us to become a PFIC for future taxable years.

 

If we were a PFIC for any taxable year during which a U.S. Holder owned our ordinary shares, the U.S. Holder may be subject to adverse tax consequences. Generally, gain recognized upon a disposition (including, under certain circumstances, a pledge) of ordinary shares by the U.S. Holder would be allocated ratably over the U.S. Holder’s holding period for such share. The amounts allocated to the taxable year of disposition and to taxable years prior to the first taxable year in which we became a PFIC would be taxed as ordinary income. The amount allocated to each other taxable year would be subject to tax at the highest tax rate in effect for that taxable year for individuals or corporations, as appropriate, and an interest charge would be imposed on the tax attributable to the allocated amounts. Further, to the extent that any distribution received by a U.S. Holder on ordinary shares exceeded 125% of the average of the annual distributions received on such shares during the preceding three years or the U.S. Holder’s holding period, whichever is shorter, that distribution would be subject to taxation in the same manner. Certain elections may be available that would result in alternative treatments (such as a mark-to-market treatment) of the shares. U.S. Holders should consult their tax advisers to determine whether such elections are available and, if so, what the consequences of the alternative treatments would be in those holders' particular circumstances. U.S. Holders should also consult their tax advisers regarding the determination of whether we are a PFIC and the potential application of the PFIC rules.

 

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Foreign Account Tax Compliance

 

The Foreign Account Tax Compliance provisions of the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act (generally referred to as “FATCA”), when applicable, will impose a U.S. federal withholding tax of 30% on payments of dividends on, and (for dispositions after December 31, 2018) gross proceeds from dispositions of, our ordinary shares that are held through ‘‘foreign financial institutions’’ (which is broadly defined for this purpose and in general includes investment vehicles) and certain other non-U.S. entities unless various U.S. information reporting and due diligence requirements (generally relating to ownership by U.S. persons of certain interests in or accounts with those entities) have been satisfied or an exemption applies. An intergovernmental agreement between the United States and an applicable foreign country may modify these requirements. U.S. Holders should consult their tax advisers regarding the effect, if any, of the FATCA provisions on their particular circumstances.

 

Information Reporting and Backup Withholding

 

Payments of dividends or of proceeds on the disposition of stock made to a holder of our ordinary shares may be subject to information reporting and backup withholding at a current rate of 28% unless such holder provides a correct taxpayer identification number on IRS Form W-9 (or other appropriate withholding form) or establishes an exemption from backup withholding, for example by properly certifying the holder’s non-U.S. status on a Form W-8BEN, Form W-8BEN-E or another appropriate version of IRS Form W-8. Payments of dividends to holders must generally be reported annually to the IRS, along with the name and address of the holder and the amount of tax withheld, if any. A similar report is sent to the holder. Pursuant to applicable income tax treaties or other agreements, the IRS may make these reports available to tax authorities in the holder’s country of residence.

 

Backup withholding is not an additional tax; rather, the U.S. income tax liability of persons subject to backup withholding will be reduced by the amount of tax withheld. If withholding results in an overpayment of taxes, a refund or credit may generally be obtained from the IRS, provided that the required information is furnished to the IRS in a timely manner.

 

F.Dividends and Paying Agents

 

On February 9, 2015, we declared a special cash dividend of US$0.40 per share to the holders of the Company’s ordinary shares. The record day was February 23, 2015, and payment day was March 16, 2015.Continental Stock Transfer & Trust acted as the paying agent. During the fiscal year of 2016, no cash dividend was declared and paid.

 

 On August 11, 2016, the Board of Directors of the Company approved a regular cash dividend policy pursuant to which future cash dividends are expected to be paid to holders of the Company’s ordinary shares on an annual basis out of funds legally available for such purpose. On September 26, 2016, the Board of Directors declared a regular annual dividend of $0.20 per ordinary share. The dividend was payable on November 11, 2016 to shareholders of record at the close of business on October 26, 2016. On September 25, 2017, the Board of Directors declared a regular annual dividend of $0.12 per ordinary share for 2017. The dividend was paid on November 06, 2017 to shareholders of record at the close of business on October 16, 2017. The declaration and payment of future dividends will be at the discretion of the Board of Directors, and will depend upon many factors, including the Company’s financial condition, earnings, capital requirements of its businesses, legal requirements, regulatory constraints, industry practice, and other factors that the Board of Directors deems relevant.

 

G.Statement by Expert

 

Not applicable.

 

H.Documents on Display

 

We have filed this Annual Report on Form 20-F with the SEC under the Exchange Act. Statements made in this Annual Report as to the contents of any document referred to are not necessarily complete. With respect to each such document filed as an exhibit to this Annual Report, reference is made to the exhibit for a more complete description of the matter involved, and each such statement shall be deemed qualified in its entirety by such reference.

 

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We are subject to the informational requirements of the Exchange Act as a foreign private issuer and file reports and other information with the SEC. Reports and other information filed by us with the SEC, including this Annual Report on Form 20-F, may be inspected and copied at the public reference room of the SEC at 100 F. Street, N.E., Washington D.C. 20549.  You can also obtain copies of this Annual Report on Form 20-F by mail from the Public Reference Section of the SEC, 100 F. Street, N.E., Washington D.C. 20549, at prescribed rates.  Additionally, copies of this material may be obtained from the SEC’s Internet site at http://www.sec.gov.  The SEC’s telephone number is 1-800-SEC-0330.

 

As a foreign private issuer, we are exempt from the rules under the Exchange Act prescribing the furnishing and content of quarterly reports and proxy statements, and officers, directors and principal shareholders are exempt from the reporting and short-swing profit recovery provisions contained in Section 16 of the Exchange Act.

 

I.Subsidiary Information

 

Not applicable.

 

ITEM 11.QUANTITATIVE AND QUALITATIVE DISCLOSURES ABOUT MARKET RISK

 

Interest Rate Risk

 

We are exposed to interest rate risk primarily with respect to our bank loans. A hypothetical 1.0% increase in the annual interest rates for all of our credit facilities under which we had outstanding borrowings as of June 30, 2018, would decrease income before income taxes by approximately $0.2 million for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018. Management monitors the banks’ prime rates in conjunction with our cash requirements to determine the appropriate level of debt balances relative to other sources of funds. We have not entered into any hedging transactions in an effort to reduce our exposure to interest rate risk.

 

Foreign Exchange Risk

 

While our reporting currency is the U.S. dollar, 76.4% of our consolidated revenues and consolidated costs and expenses are denominated in RMB, and 85.6% of our assets are denominated in RMB, and the remaining are mainly denominated in SGD.  As a result, we are exposed to foreign exchange risk as our revenues and results of operations may be affected by fluctuations in the exchange rates of the U.S. dollar, RMB and SGD.  If the RMB or SGD depreciates against the U.S. dollar, the value of our RMB or SGD revenues, earnings and assets as expressed in our U.S. dollar financial statements will decline. Assets and liabilities are translated at exchange rates at the balance sheet dates and revenue and expenses are translated at the average exchange rates and shareholders’ equity is translated at historical exchange rates.  Any resulting translation adjustments are not included in determining net income but are included in determining other comprehensive income, a component of shareholders’ equity.  An average appreciation or depreciation of the RMB against the US dollar of 5% would increase or decrease our comprehensive income by $216,294 and $195,695, respectively. An average appreciation or depreciation of the SGD against the US dollar of 5% would increase or decrease our comprehensive income by $376,814 or $340,926 respectively, based on our current revenues, costs and expenses, assets, and liabilities denominated in RMB or SGD as of June 30, 2018.

 

Very limited hedging transactions are available in China to reduce our exposure to exchange rate fluctuations for the RMB. To date, we have not entered into any hedging transactions in an effort to reduce our exposure to foreign currency exchange risk in any of the currencies in which we operate. While we may enter into hedging transactions in the future, the availability and effectiveness of these transactions may be limited, and it may not be able to successfully hedge our exposure at all. In addition, our foreign currency exchange losses may be magnified by PRC exchange control regulations that restrict its ability to convert RMB into foreign currencies.

 

 89 

 

 

Inflation

 

Inflation in China and the other regions in which we operate has not materially impacted our results of operations. Although we have not been materially affected by inflation in the past, we can provide no assurance that we will not be affected in the future by higher rates of inflation. To the extent that we operate in a more diverse range of countries and regions, the risk of inflation on our operations is minimized. If inflation were a significant factor in our financial performance, then certain operating costs and expenses, such as employee compensation and office operating expenses may increase. Additionally, because a substantial portion of our assets from time to time consists of cash and cash equivalents and time deposits with original maturities over three months, high inflation could significantly reduce the value and purchasing power of these assets.

 

ITEM 12.DESCRIPTION OF SECURITIES OTHER THAN EQUITY SECURITIES

 

A. Debt Securities

 

Not applicable.

 

B. Warrants and Rights

 

Not applicable.

 

C. Other Securities

 

Not applicable.

 

D. American Depositary Shares

 

We do not have any American Depositary Shares.

 

PART II

 

ITEM 13.DEFAULTS, DIVIDEND ARREARAGES AND DELINQUENCIES

 

None.

 

ITEM 14.MATERIAL MODIFICATIONS TO THE RIGHTS OF SECURITIES HOLDERS AND USE OF PROCEEDS

 

On August 27, 2010 our Board of Directors adopted a rights plan, or the 2010 Rights Plan. The 2010 Rights Plan provides for a dividend distribution of one preferred share purchase Right, for each outstanding ordinary share to shareholders of record at the close of business on August 27, 2010, effective as of September 27, 2010. Each Right entitles the shareholder to buy 1 share of our Class A Preferred Stock at an exercise price of $160. The Rights will become exercisable if a person or group announces an acquisition of 20% or more of our outstanding ordinary shares, or announces commencement of a tender offer for 20% or more of the ordinary shares. In that event, the Rights permit shareholders, other than the acquiring person, to purchase our ordinary shares having a market value of twice the exercise price of the Rights, in lieu of the Class A Preferred Stock. In addition, in the event of certain business combinations, the Rights permit the purchase of the ordinary shares of an acquiring person at a 50% discount. Rights held by the acquiring person become null and void in each case.  Unless terminated earlier by our Board of Directors, the 2010 Rights Plan will expire on September 27, 2020.

 

In connection with the adoption of the 2010 Rights Plan, we amended our Memorandum and Articles of Association to increase our authorized shares of Class A Preferred Stock from 10,000,000 shares to 90,000,000 shares, and to provide that directors may only be removed by shareholders for cause.

 

 90 

 

 

ITEM 15.CONTROLS AND PROCEDURES

 

Disclosure Controls and Procedures

 

As required by Rule 13a-15(e) and 15d-15(e) under the Securities Exchange Act, our management has carried out an evaluation, with the participation and under the supervision of our chief executive officer and chief financial officer, of the effectiveness of the design and operation of our disclosure controls and procedures as of June 30, 2018.

 

Disclosure controls and procedures refer to controls and other procedures designed to ensure that information required to be disclosed in the reports we file or submit under the Securities Exchange Act is recorded, processed, summarized and reported within the time periods specified in the rules and forms of the SEC and that such information is accumulated and communicated to our management, including our chief executive officer and chief financial officer, as appropriate, to allow timely decisions regarding required disclosure.  In designing and evaluating our disclosure controls and procedures, management recognizes that any controls and procedures, no matter how well designed and operated, can provide only reasonable assurance of achieving the desired control objectives, and management is required to apply its judgment in evaluating and implementing possible controls and procedures.

 

Management conducted its evaluation of disclosure controls and procedures under the supervision of our principal executive officer and our principal financial officer.  Based upon, and as of the date of this evaluation, our principal executive officer and principal financial officer concluded that our disclosure controls and procedures were effective as of June 30, 2018.

 

Management’s Annual Report on Internal Control over Financial Reporting

 

Our management is responsible for establishing and maintaining adequate internal control over financial reporting, as such term is defined in Rules 13a-15(f) and 15d-15(f) under the Exchange Act for our company. Internal control over financial reporting is a process designed to provide reasonable assurance regarding the reliability of financial reporting and the preparation of consolidated financial statements in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles and includes those policies and procedures that (1) pertain to the maintenance of records that, in reasonable detail, accurately and fairly reflect the transactions and dispositions of a company’s assets, (2) provide reasonable assurance that transactions are recorded as necessary to permit preparation of consolidated financial statements in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, and that a company’s receipts and expenditures are being made only in accordance with authorizations of a company’s management and directors and (3) provide reasonable assurance regarding prevention or timely detection of unauthorized acquisition, use or disposition of a company’s assets that could have a material effect on the consolidated financial statements.

 

Because of its inherent limitations, a system of internal control over financial reporting can provide only reasonable assurance with respect to consolidated financial statement preparation and presentation and may not prevent or detect misstatements. Also, projections of any evaluation of effectiveness to future periods are subject to the risk that controls may become inadequate because of changes in conditions, or that the degree of compliance with the policies and procedures may deteriorate.

 

Our management assessed the effectiveness of our internal control over financial reporting as of June 30, 2018. In making this assessment, our management used the criteria set forth by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (COSO) in Internal Control-Integrated Framework (2013 framework). Based on our assessment, management believes that, as of June 30, 2018, our internal control over financial reporting was effective based on those criteria.

 

Our independent registered public accounting firm has audited our internal control over financial reporting as of June 30, 2018 and has issued an attestation report, which appears on page F-3 of this annual report on Form 20-F.

 

Changes in Internal Control over Financial Reporting

 

There has been no change in our internal control procedure over financial reporting during the year that has materially affected, or is reasonably likely to materially affect, our internal control over financial reporting.

 

 91 

 

 

ITEM 16A.AUDIT COMMITTEE FINANCIAL EXPERT

 

Our board of directors has determined that Mr. Colin Sung, one of our independent directors, meets the criteria for an “audit committee financial expert,” as established by the SEC. Mr. Sung will not be deemed an “expert” for any other purpose, including, without limitation, for purposes of Section 11 of the Securities Act, as a result of being designated or identified as an audit committee financial expert.  The designation or identification of Mr. Sung as an audit committee financial expert does not impose on him any duties, obligations or liability that are greater than the duties, obligations and liability imposed on him as a member of our Audit Committee and board of directors in the absence of such designation or identification.

 

ITEM 16B.CODE OF ETHICS

 

In March 2006, our board of directors adopted a code of conduct, or Code of Conduct, which applies to all of our directors, officers and employees, including our principal executive officer, principal financial officer, and principal accounting officer.  Our Code of Conduct addresses, among other things, honesty and ethical conduct, conflicts of interest, compliance with laws, regulations and policies, confidentiality, and reporting of violations of the code.  A copy of the Code of Conduct was filed as Annex G to our registration statement on Form S-4 filed with the SEC on March 30, 2006 and is incorporated herein by reference. Our Code of Conduct is also posted on the corporate governance page of our website at www.hollysys.com. During the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018, there were no waivers from a provision of our Code of Conduct granted to our directors, officers or employees.

 

ITEM 16C.PRINCIPAL ACCOUNTANT FEES AND SERVICES

 

Audit Fees

 

Ernst & Young Hua Ming LLP was our principal accountant for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2018 and 2017. The aggregate fees incurred for fiscal years ended June 30, 2018 and 2017 were $1,369,518 and $1,292,771, respectively. The fees were related to the audit of our annual financial statements and services that are normally provided by the accountant in connection with statutory and regulatory filings.

 

Audit-Related Fees

 

The audit-related fees includes service rendered related to our quarterly financial information for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2018 and 2017 were $91,346 and $73,725, respectively.

 

Tax Fees

 

The aggregate fees incurred in the fiscal years ended June 30, 2018 and 2017 for tax services rendered were $52,771 and $39,731, respectively. The tax service includes tax compliance and tax advice.

 

All Other Fees

 

No other fees were incurred in each of the fiscal years ended June 30, 2018 and 2017 for services provided by the principal accountant, other than the services reported above under other captions of this Item 16C.

 

Audit Committee Pre-Approval Policies and Procedures

 

Our Audit Committee pre-approves all auditing services and permitted non-audit services to be performed for us by our independent auditor, including the fees and terms thereof (subject to the de minimums exceptions for non-audit services described in Section 10A(i)(l)(B) of the Exchange Act that are approved by our Audit Committee prior to the completion of the audit).

 

ITEM 16D.EXEMPTIONS FROM THE LISTING STANDARDS FOR AUDIT COMMITTEES

 

We have not asked for, nor have we been granted, an exemption from the applicable listing standards for our Audit Committee.

 

 92 

 

 

ITEM 16E.PURCHASES OF EQUITY SECURITIES BY THE ISSUER AND AFFILIATED PURCHASERS

 

There were no purchases of equity securities by us or by any of our affiliates during the period covered by this Annual Report.

 

ITEM 16F.CHANGE IN REGISTRANT’S CERTIFYING ACCOUNTANT

 

None.

 

ITEM 16G.CORPORATE GOVERNANCE

 

We are incorporated in the BVI and our corporate governance practices are governed by applicable BVI law as well as our memorandum and articles of association. In addition, because our ordinary shares are listed on NASDAQ, we are subject to NASDAQ's corporate governance requirements.

 

NASDAQ Listing Rule 5620(a) requires each issuer to hold an annual meeting of shareholders no later than one year after the end of the issuer's fiscal year end. NASDAQ Listing Rule 5635(c) also requires each issuer to obtain shareholders’ approval when a plan or other equity compensation arrangement is established or materially amended. However, NASDAQ Listing Rule 5615(a)(3) permits a foreign private issuer like us to follow home country practices in lieu of certain requirements of Listing Rule 5600, provided that such foreign private issuer discloses in its annual report filed with the SEC each requirement of Rule 5600 that it does not follow and describes the home country practice followed in lieu of such requirement. We follow home country practice with respect to annual meetings and did not hold an annual shareholder meeting in fiscal 2018. Our BVI counsel, Maples and Calder, has provided a letter to NASDAQ certifying that under BVI law, we are not required to hold annual shareholder meetings. We may, however, hold annual shareholder meetings in the future if there are significant issues that require shareholders’ approvals.

 

Maples and Calder has also provided a letter to NASDAQ certifying that under BVI law, we are not required to seek shareholder approval for the establishment of our equity compensation plans. In 2015, we followed home country practice with respect to the adoption of our 2015 Equity Plan without seeking shareholder approval.

 

ITEM 16H.MINE SAFETY DISCLOSURE

 

Not applicable.

 

 93 

 

 

PART III

 

ITEM 17.FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

 

We have elected to provide financial statements pursuant to Item 18.

 

ITEM 18.FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

 

Our Audited Financial Statements for the Years Ended June 30, 2018, 2017 and 2016 are included at the end of this annual report.

 

ITEM 19.EXHIBITS

 

Number   Description
     
1.1   Amended and Restated Memorandum and Articles of Association (Incorporated by reference to Exhibit 3.1 of the Form 6-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on May 31, 2016).
     
2.1   Rights Agreement, dated as of August 27, 2010, between Hollysys Automation Technologies Ltd. and Continental Stock Transfer & Trust Company, which includes the Form of Right Certificate as Exhibit A and the Summary of Rights to Purchase Preferred Shares as Exhibit B (Incorporated by reference to Exhibit 2.1 of the Form 6-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on September 21, 2010).

 

4.1   Chardan North China Acquisition Corporation 2006 Stock Plan (Incorporated by reference to Exhibit 4.1 of the Registration Statement on Form S-8 (file no. 333-170811) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on November 24, 2010).

 

4.2   Form of Stock Consignment Agreement (Incorporated by reference to Exhibit 10.2 of the Registration Statement S-4/A (file no. 333-132826) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on June 28, 2006).
     
4.3   Share Sale and Purchase Agreement, by Unionway Resources Limited and the Company, dated December 23, 2009. ((Incorporated by reference to Exhibit 4.20 of the Report on Form 20-F for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2010 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on December 22, 2010).
     
4.4*   Form of Employment Agreement between the Company and its executive officers.
     
8.1*   List of Subsidiaries

 

 94 

 

 

11.1   Code of Ethics (included as Annex G to the Proxy Statement/Prospectus contained in Registration Statement on Form S-4 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 30, 2006 and incorporated by reference herein)
     
12.1*   CEO Certification Pursuant to Rule 13a-14(a) (17 CFR 240.13a-14(a)) (17 CFR 240.13a-14(a)) or Rule 15d-1(a) (17 CFR 240.15d-14(a))
     
12.2*   CFO Certification Pursuant to Rule 13a-14(a) (17 CFR 240.13a-14(a)) or Rule 15d-1(a) (17 CFR 240.15d-14(a))
     
13.1*   CEO Certification Pursuant to Section 906 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002
     
13.2*   CFO Certification Pursuant to Section 906 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002
     
15.1*   Consent of Ernst & Young Hua Ming LLP
     
99.1   Hollysys Automation Technologies Ltd. 2015 Equity Incentive Plan (Incorporated by reference to Exhibit 99.1 of the Registration Statement on Form S-8 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on December 18, 2015).
     
101.INS*   XBRL Instant Document
     
101.SCH*   XBRL Taxonomy Extension Schema Document
     
101.CAL*   XBLR Taxonomy Extension Calculation Linkbase Document
     
101.DEF*   XBRL Taxonomy Extension Definition Linkbase
     
101.LAB*   XBRL Taxonomy Extension Label Linkbase
     
101.PRE*   XBRL Taxonomy Extension Presentation Linkbase
     

 

* Filed with this annual report on Form 20-F

 

 95 

 

 

SIGNATURE

 

The registrant hereby certifies that it meets all of the requirements for filing on Form 20-F and that it has duly caused and authorized the undersigned to sign this annual report on its behalf.

 

  HOLLYSYS AUTOMATION TECHNOLOGIES LTD.
   
  /s/ Baiqing Shao
  Baiqing Shao
  Chief Executive Officer
Date: September 21, 2018  

 

 96 

 

 

HOLLYSYS AUTOMATION TECHNOLOGIES LTD.

 

Index to Consolidated Financial Statements

 

  Page
   
Reports of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm F-2
   
Consolidated Balance Sheets as of June 30, 2017 and 2018 F-4
   
Consolidated Statements of Comprehensive Income for the Years ended June 30, 2016, 2017 and 2018 F-5
   
Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows for the Years ended June 30, 2016, 2017 and 2018 F-6
   
Consolidated Statements of Stockholders’ Equity for the Years ended June 30, 2016, 2017 and 2018 F-7
   
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements F-8

 

 F-1 

 

 

REPORT OF INDEPENDENT REGISTERED PUBLIC ACCOUNTING FIRM

 

To the Stockholders and the Board of Directors of Hollysys Automation Technologies Ltd.

 

Opinion on the Financial Statements

 

We have audited the accompanying consolidated balance sheets of Hollysys Automation Technologies Ltd. (the “Company”) as of June 30, 2018 and 2017, the related consolidated statements of comprehensive income, stockholders’ equity and cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended June 30, 2018, and the related notes (collectively referred to as the “consolidated financial statements”). In our opinion, the consolidated financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of the Company at June 30, 2018 and 2017, and the results of its operations and its cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended June 30, 2018, in conformity with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles.

 

We also have audited, in accordance with the standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States) (“PCAOB”), the Company’s internal control over financial reporting as of June 30, 2018, based on criteria established in Internal Control - Integrated Framework issued by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (2013 framework) and our report dated September 21, 2018 expressed an unqualified opinion thereon.

 

Basis for Opinion

 

These financial statements are the responsibility of the Company’s management. Our responsibility is to express an opinion on the Company’s financial statements based on our audits. We are a public accounting firm registered with the PCAOB and are required to be independent with respect to the Company in accordance with the U.S. federal securities laws and the applicable rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the PCAOB.

 

We conducted our audits in accordance with the standards of the PCAOB. Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the financial statements are free of material misstatement, whether due to error or fraud. Our audits included performing procedures to assess the risks of material misstatement of the financial statements, whether due to error or fraud, and performing procedures that respond to those risks. Such procedures included examining, on a test basis, evidence regarding the amounts and disclosures in the financial statements. Our audits also included evaluating the accounting principles used and significant estimates made by management, as well as evaluating the overall presentation of the financial statements. We believe that our audits provide a reasonable basis for our opinion.

 

/s/ Ernst & Young Hua Ming LLP 

 
We have served as the Company’s auditor since 2012.
Beijing, the People’s Republic of China
 
September 21, 2018

 

 F-2 

 

 

REPORT OF INDEPENDENT REGISTERED PUBLIC ACCOUNTING FIRM

 

To the Stockholders and the Board of Directors of Hollysys Automation Technologies Ltd.

 

Opinion on Internal Control over Financial Reporting

 

We have audited Hollysys Automation Technologies Ltd.’s internal control over financial reporting as of June 30, 2018, based on criteria established in Internal Control - Integrated Framework issued by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (2013 framework), (the “COSO criteria”). In our opinion, Hollysys Automation Technologies Ltd. (the “Company”) maintained, in all material respects, effective internal control over financial reporting as of June 30, 2018, based on the COSO criteria.

 

We also have audited, in accordance with the standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States) (“PCAOB”), the consolidated balance sheets of the Company as of June 30, 2018 and 2017, the related consolidated statements of comprehensive income, stockholders’ equity and cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended June 30, 2018, and the related notes and our report dated September 21, 2018 expressed an unqualified opinion thereon.

 

Basis for Opinion

 

The Company’s management is responsible for maintaining effective internal control over financial reporting and for its assessment of the effectiveness of internal control over financial reporting included in the accompanying Management’s Annual Report on Internal Control over Financial Reporting. Our responsibility is to express an opinion on the Company’s internal control over financial reporting based on our audit. We are a public accounting firm registered with the PCAOB and are required to be independent with respect to the Company in accordance with the U.S. federal securities laws and the applicable rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the PCAOB.

 

We conducted our audit in accordance with the standards of the PCAOB. Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether effective internal control over financial reporting was maintained in all material respects.

 

Our audit included obtaining an understanding of internal control over financial reporting, assessing the risk that a material weakness exists, testing and evaluating the design and operating effectiveness of internal control based on the assessed risk, and performing such other procedures as we considered necessary in the circumstances. We believe that our audit provides a reasonable basis for our opinion.

 

Definition and Limitations of Internal Control Over Financial Reporting

 

A company’s internal control over financial reporting is a process designed to provide reasonable assurance regarding the reliability of financial reporting and the preparation of financial statements for external purposes in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. A company’s internal control over financial reporting includes those policies and procedures that (1) pertain to the maintenance of records that, in reasonable detail, accurately and fairly reflect the transactions and dispositions of the assets of the company; (2) provide reasonable assurance that transactions are recorded as necessary to permit preparation of financial statements in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, and that receipts and expenditures of the company are being made only in accordance with authorizations of management and directors of the company; and (3) provide reasonable assurance regarding prevention or timely detection of unauthorized acquisition, use, or disposition of the company’s assets that could have a material effect on the financial statements.

 

Because of its inherent limitations, internal control over financial reporting may not prevent or detect misstatements. Also, projections of any evaluation of effectiveness to future periods are subject to the risk that controls may become inadequate because of changes in conditions, or that the degree of compliance with the policies or procedures may deteriorate.

 

/s/ Ernst & Young Hua Ming LLP 

 
Beijing, the People’s Republic of China
 
September 21, 2018

 

 F-3 

 

 

HOLLYSYS AUTOMATION TECHNOLOGIES LTD.
CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS
(In US dollars thousands except for number of shares and per share data)

 

       June 30, 
   Notes   2017   2018 
ASSETS            
Current assets:               
Cash and cash equivalents       $197,640   $265,675 
Time deposits with maturities over three months        96,214    139,433 
Restricted cash        39,534    20,233 
Accounts receivable, net of allowance for doubtful accounts of $48,089 and $49,094 as of June 30, 2017 and 2018, respectively   4    246,552    275,216 
Costs and estimated earnings in excess of billings, net of allowance for doubtful accounts of $8,660 and $9,929 as of June 30, 2017 and 2018, respectively   5    162,096    161,012 
Other receivables, net of allowance for doubtful accounts of $1,448 and $4,946 as of June 30, 2017 and 2018, respectively        20,036    30,467 
Advances to suppliers        9,964    9,685 
Amounts due from related parties   20    34,142    33,678 
Inventories   3    45,660    58,074 
Prepaid expenses        619    713 
Income tax recoverable        5,169    6,712 
Deferred tax assets   18    7,730    - 
Total current assets        865,356    1,000,898 
                
Non-current assets:               
Restricted cash        522    1,401 
Property, plant and equipment, net   6    80,529    80,210 
Prepaid land leases   7    10,206    10,172 
Intangible assets, net   8    1,928    3,186 
Investments in equity investees   10    47,242    53,389 
Investments in cost investees   10    4,024    4,195 
Goodwill   9    47,326    48,359 
Deferred tax assets   18    1,121    8,318 
Total non-current assets        192,898    209,230 
                
Total assets        1,058,254   $1,210,128 
                
LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS’ EQUITY               
Current liabilities (including amounts of the VIE without recourse to the primary beneficiary of $14,051 and $19,234 as of June 30, 2017 and 2018, respectively):   1           
Derivative financial liability   14   $487   $412 
Short-term bank loans   12    8,121    2,865 
Current portion of long-term loans   13    420    350 
Accounts payable        122,714    129,477 
Construction costs payable        383    304 
Deferred revenue        107,407    137,692 
Accrued payroll and related expenses        13,600    14,299 
Income tax payable        3,371    3,746 
Warranty liabilities   11    5,386    5,622 
Other tax payables        10,488    7,801 
Accrued liabilities        23,950    25,133 
Amounts due to related parties   20    2,301    5,353 
Deferred tax liabilities   18    4,350    - 
Total current liabilities        302,978    333,054 
                
Accrued liabilities        2,220    2,410 
Long-term loans   13    20,581    20,709 
Deferred tax liabilities   18    6,689    9,366 
Warranty liabilities   11    2,246    2,236 
Total non-current liabilities        31,736    34,721 
                
Total liabilities        334,714    367,775 
                
Commitments and contingencies   21    -    - 
                
Stockholders’ equity:               
Ordinary shares, par value $0.001 per share, 100,000,000 shares authorized; 60,342,099 shares issued and outstanding as of June 30, 2017 and 2018, respectively   15    60    60 
Additional paid-in capital        222,189    223,396 
Statutory reserves        41,130    45,970 
Retained earnings        482,999    578,079 
Accumulated other comprehensive income        (22,859)   (5,453)
Total Hollysys Automation Technologies Ltd. stockholders’ equity        723,519    842,052 
                
Non-controlling interest        21    301 
Total equity        723,540    842,353 
                
Total liabilities and equity       $1,058,254   $1,210,128 

 

 F-4 

 

 

HOLLYSYS AUTOMATION TECHNOLOGIES LTD.
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF COMPREHENSIVE INCOME
(In US dollars thousands except for number of shares and per share data)

 

       Year ended June 30, 
   Notes