Quantcast Interview - LukeConnell Vandeverre, World Stock Exchange : The Metaverse Journal - Australia’s Virtual World News Service

Interview - LukeConnell Vandeverre, World Stock Exchange

April 20, 2007

The World Stock Exchange (WSE) is a SL business that tends to garner a lot of attention. As the only stock exchange its role in the financial life of SL is significant. And like any institution involved in finance, contention is easy to find about that institution’s role in the broader community.

First, some context. Luke Connell is an Australian who is known as LukeConnell Vandeverre in-world. He is Managing Director of Hope Capital and runs WSE. Additionally, a virtual World Trade Centre (WTC) has been created, as reported by the Second Life Herald this week. The WTC project has generated a great deal of interest and controversy given the real-life events affecting the New York-based WTC.

We caught up with Luke Friday evening for an in-depth interview.


Lowell Cremorne: To start off, can you give a potted history of yourself?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: I grew up in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne, Australia. I left school at 14 years of age to become self educated after being told I wasn’t allowed to participate in the business and accounting classes due to my age. I spent most of the time from 14 - 18 years of age just finding my way around the world of business, the terms, key areas and reviewing many opportunites that were and still are in the market both nationally and globally.

Lowell Cremorne: So have you completed studies since then?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: I’m self educated with the information necessary to assist me in achieving my goals.

Lowell Cremorne: Ok, so how did you educate yourself in economics / finance / business? They’re not easy areas to pick up.

LukeConnell Vandeverre: I completed most of a university assignment on Ethics and Corporate Governance for a friend studying at RMIT and he said that the work got a D, which at first I thought meant bad but in actual fact it meant that my work got a distinction.

Lowell Cremorne: (laughs) True, it is a distinction. What did you learn about corporate governance from that? Given you’re running a stock exchange, corporate governance is pivotal - what model of governance are you using?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: There isn’t a model for governance, simply common sense and in an emerging market that has in many ways been developed from scratch by myself both morally and conceptually. It has many areas that need to be improved yet, but that can only happen with time as some changes require the assistance of third parties.

Lowell Cremorne: Ok fair enough - what sort of third parties do you envisage will need to play a role?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: Linden Research and myself will have to begin working closely to ensure that the market grows along with the Second Life economy while also minimising the risk of clear in-world fraud.

Lowell Cremorne: That’s the reason I asked about corporate governance - without a detailed approach from WSE aren’t Linden Labs going to be a little concerned on your ability to mitigate risk in regard to fraud?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: Obviously there will need to be a detailed plan however this is a new market and we are still watching the market to see what areas can be improved on in order to draft up the appropriate plan. This isn’t real life and it isn’t a real market and therefore the approach to minimising, preventing and tackling fraud has to be approached differently to real life.

Lowell Cremorne: How do you feel virtual fraud differs?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: Well for a start, fraud is deceit, trickery, or breach of confidence, perpetrated for profit or to gain some unfair or dishonest advantage in a virtual world using a fictional currency.

Lowell Cremorne: Yep for sure - what I’m interested in is your assertion that fraud is ‘different’ in SL - aside from the currency differences, wouldn’t fraud prevention methodology essentially be the same for a company? The reason I’m asking these questions is the central role WSE plays in regard to stock trading in SL - any company or investor will have concerns around fraud, risk mitigation, corporate governance etc and may have concerns that the only security is the claim of a ‘common sense’ approach.

LukeConnell Vandeverre: I have to stress that this cannot be taken too seriously by people as it is a fictional market with virtual companies built on avatars using a fictional currency and therefore the expectation of real life governance within a short time is not possible. It is the investors responsibility to decide what to do and don’t do with their Lindens.

Lowell Cremorne: But given the reporting today of the SL World Trade Centre deal you’ve done - you’re talking significant amounts of real money. And yes, investors do need to make their own decisions, but surely you’d agree there’s no basic security being offered by WSE around governance and the like?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: On the contrary i’m not taking any real world money. It’s Lindens. There is security - we have the WSE Listing Rules to minimise fraud and it has worked rather well, a WSE Constitution which oversees the obligations by companies and the shareholder rights and we have the Terms of Service which lays out the risks.

Lowell Cremorne: Well I won’t dwell on that point any longer then - can you tell me about the WTC deal? It sounds exciting.

LukeConnell Vandeverre: There’s nothing I can really say that wasn’t in the Hope Capital Report or the WTC Press Release. Would you have questions related to something not in there?

Lowell Cremorne: Well, the only one would be the quote from Shaun Altman around not being consulted on the HCL transaction in regard to the WTC - what would your response be to that?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: Shaun Altman did not need to be consulted on this transaction as it is the responsibility of management to make the executive decisions regarding all matters of the company. For example, upon paying Shaun Altman 12,500,000 shares in HCL for his share of the WSE, the existing shareholders at the time were also not consulted however there were no complaints, only support. The dilution of equity was far greater during that transaction than the small amount used to acquire the WTC Project. Shaun Altman didn’t like the WTC Project deal because it made the company less attractive to a potential buyer who decided not to purchase most of his shares after the deal in what was to be a transaction organised off market.

Lowell Cremorne: Ok - in both cases - in RL isn’t it fairly standard practice for the management of a company to at least inform stock holders (via the stock exchange or directly) of their intentions prior to such a large deal?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: The normal practice in RL is to follow the constitution and rules which Hope Capital did.

Lowell Cremorne: True, though the ASX for example has reporting requirements and while I’m no compliance expert, wouldn’t a large deal like that fall within reporting requirements? Let’s use the current QANTAS takeover as a parallel.

LukeConnell Vandeverre: There is no rules for the WSE saying that I had to make any announcements prior to the transaction.

Lowell Cremorne: I have no doubt WSE doesn’t have that rule, I was just interested in the RL / SL comparison and whether you felt that level of reporting would ideally occur.

LukeConnell Vandeverre: You can compare the ASX, SEC, ASIC or WSE however they are completely different and are setup to cater for different markets and environments. RL is RL and this is SL not real

Lowell Cremorne: Let’s move on - what do you hope to achieve in SL in the next year?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: I intend to continually improve the SL operations of the WSE and Hope Capital in order to provide a more realistic trading and regulatory environment that encourages continued growth of the WSE and SL economy through increased economic activity.

Lowell Cremorne: And the WTC project is likely to be Hope Capital’s main RL dollar earner?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: They are completely different investments in order to help Hope Capital Ltd achieve its objectives. The WSE is a far more profitable business than the WTC. Profit isn’t the main focus for the World Trade Centers but rather a strategic acquistion.

Lowell Cremorne: And the strategy behind the acquuisition is?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: The strategy is to drive economic growth and awareness of SL.


Lowell Cremorne: A totally different question - have you had mostly support, resistance or a mix of both to your operation from businesses in SL?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: I’m confident that over 90% of HCL shareholders support my operations and I have many friends and associates throughout SL that also support our operations.

Lowell Cremorne: Do you get many ‘knockers’ in your dealings?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: The major reason for the significan’t decline in the HCL share price is a direct result of the large number of HCL shares sold by Shaun Altman over the past 2-3 weeks. Do you mean am I getting approached with business opportunities in my position?

Lowell Cremorne: I haven’t actually followed the share price, it was more a general question for any business person with a monopoly on how much dissent you receive in-world.

LukeConnell Vandeverre: In my opinion it’s in the best interests of the SL economy to have one serious virtual exchange right now. There will also be a small minority with loud voices who will work against the major corporation in any economy, except in SL they can get their message to more people within a short time. It’s also easier for someone with malicious intent to make false or misleading allegations about an SL company with the aim to have a negative impact on the share price and market sentiment.

Lowell Cremorne: Have you had issues with that sort of thing?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: most prominent individuals, avatars or major companies in RL or SL have such issues.

Lowell Cremorne: True - what would you say to (a) a potential investor and (b) a company interested in listing to convince them they’re making a sound investment decision. Particularly for the investor, how do they know the listed companies have been vetted and actually exist?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: I don’t tell anyone how to invest full stop, I can only speak for myself and the operations I run directly. The investors know exactly the same information as me, what’s freely available in the Avatar profile, what the CEO tells us and what’s registered in the SL groups.

Lowell Cremorne: That’s the core of my question - does WSE do any vetting of companies to determine their abiity to generate returns for shareholders? I know you have an application process etcetera..

LukeConnell Vandeverre: The WSE doesn’t make the decisions of which company is or isn’t a good investment, thats up to the market to decide. The WSE makes sure that companies listed meet the listing rules.

Lowell Cremorne: Ok - I was just getting at the issue of a new investor having faith in the WSE itself - if you end up with a market listing full of unviable companies, doesn’t that affect the reputation of the WSE?

LukeConnell Vandeverre: Yes, however the IPO process will remove most of those companies that people don’t want to invest in :) And I won’t approve IPO applications if there isn’t sufficient information in the application. Determining who is and isn’t a viable business is something that each investor decides, not the WSE as all investors have their own opinions.

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Viewing 16 Comments

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    Thank you for that gripping interview. I've dealt with Luke Connell in the past and was never impressed. Now I find out that he's just a high school drop out. I dont know any high drop-outs, I mean, how hard is it to get your School Certificate?? All you have to do is turn up. BTW so you got a Distinction in ethics, big deal, my entire university class got a D is ethics, its a Mickey Mouse subject. Also Luke, in obtaining my degree I was awarded dozens of Distinctions, so was everyone else, 1 Distinction does not make you a super hero, BOY!!!! (And yes, you are a boy), especially in ethics.

    Well the good news is due to Connells incompetance, arrogance, total lack of common sense, and it has now been revealed, lack of a basic education, the WSE is completely in the toilet, and is unrecoverable. No one trades, no one cares, and soon there'll be 3-4 exchanges run by experienced, competant individuals ready to drive the final nail into the WSE coffin. Connell has lied, cheated, defrauded and acted with intent. It's OK though, he'll be back to the call centres where he belongs earning 6 bucks an hour. Take some advice, just once Luke, get an education. I got one, and instead of complaining and bitching about not enough accounting courses, Universities let me study accounting at their institution. They will not give you that priviledge.

    Without a high leavers certificate you are nothing but a failure, doomed for constant failure.
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    I trust Luke Connell about as far as I can throw him. There is a LOT of arrogance floating about him and the things he does.
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    That photo with Clinton is priceless.
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    Good interview, Lowell. I think the dancing around governance and the comment that Lindens are not real money is enough for me to be concerned.

    Keep these interviews coming!
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    RE: "Shaun Altman didn’t like the WTC Project deal because it made the company less attractive to a potential buyer who decided not to purchase most of his shares after the deal in what was to be a transaction organised off market." This is my personal opinion of the situation and Shaun has a right to disagree should he choose to.
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    I like beans!
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    I'm a little bit surprised that I didn't seem to be contacted for comment regarding this article, as my name was floated twice. If I was, and I missed the IM or turned down the press inquiry because I didn't know it was a response, sorry. At any rate, I do have a fiew comments:

    --- Begin Quote ---

    "LukeConnell Vandeverre: Shaun Altman did not need to be consulted on this transaction as it is the responsibility of management to make the executive decisions regarding all matters of the company. For example, upon paying Shaun Altman 12,500,000 shares in HCL for his share of the WSE, the existing shareholders at the time were also not consulted however there were no complaints, only support. The dilution of equity was far greater during that transaction than the small amount used to acquire the WTC Project. Shaun Altman didn’t like the WTC Project deal because it made the company less attractive to a potential buyer who decided not to purchase most of his shares after the deal in what was to be a transaction organised off market."

    --- End Quote ---

    Actually, at the time you purchased my 50% of WSE back from me for HCL in exchange for 12,500,000 HCL shares, you were, to the best of my recollection, the majority shareholder. With this in mind, of course nobody needed to be consulted. Additionally, it was an equity wash (50% of WSE for 50% of HCL's stock, zero dilution of equity), so of course nobody would complain when the value of the company isn't changing a cent.

    At the time of this transaction however, I became the majority shareholder of HCL, as you had already sold off many of your own shares for various reasons (IPO etc). It should of course be a fundamental ethical concern to consult the owners of the company you manage prior to taking an action like increasing the share float to buy something like this WTC thing. You didn't simply because you knew that if you did, the share issue would have been voted down in 2 seconds flat, for a variety of reasons. So instead, you decided to simply do whatever the hell you wanted, with complete disregard for the actual owners of HCL.

    You are very much a minority shareholder in HCL. You should view yourself as someone who serves as CEO at our (the shareholders/owners) pleasure. It is both depressing and disturbing that you do not.

    If you really want to have a dialog in the media about why I don't like the WTC deal, that's fine. Let's talk about that. It actually has nothing to do with the sale of any of my shares (and that deal was to be transacted on market, not off). You actually ran that buyer off long before you transacted this WTC deal. In fact, that buyer backed out due to your flagrant disregard for shareholder rights.

    There are two main reasons why I don't like the WTC deal. One is business, one is personal. There are a variety of smaller reasons as well, but in the interest of not writing a novel here, we can stick to the two most important reasons for now.

    First, let's talk about the business side. $26,000.00 worth of shareholder equity for a build and some land that could have been had for.. what.. maybe $2,000.00? I could see this as maybe even just a failure in negotiations, had the deal not been with one of your cronies. Since that was the case though, other reasons have to be considered as well.

    At any rate, now you've overpaid by so much that in order to make any money, you say you have to rent the floors out for nearly L$10 per prim per WEEK? Why would anyone in their right mind pay that, when they can get prims for about L$1.50 per week even with the more expensive tier on a private island and build their own WTC? That's known in the real world as "price gouging", and it's REQUIRED in this instance, just to BREAK EVEN on the equity you spent without waiting EIGHTEEN YEARS or so. So in terms of what you've done vs. SL economic norms, this deal is outrageous, from a business perspective.

    I will be shocked and amazed if people are willing to pay you 7.5x normal rental rates when they could just build their own tower and STILL rent floors for a profit for the price they're paying you. You seem to be banking on finding enough STUPID tenants to keep this build fully occupied all the time, and to me that's not a safe bet. As I've said elsewhere, I would have voted no on this deal if I had the opportunity. Since I was not afforded such an opportunity though, I had no other choice but to sell a lot more HCL shares to mitigate farther downside risk when I learned about the deal.

    When I had a chance to visit the WTC build in person recently, I also found it to be outrageous on a personal level. Were you aware that the plaque listing off victims as part of your "memorial", for just one example, has at least one name with a zig-zag underline under it, from a SPELL CHECKER? Are you also aware that you seem to be showing a pirated video in your "memorial"? Or, have you licensed this video? I could go on, but it disturbs me to even have to list this stuff off.

    Bottom line, not a lot of time or attention went into this "memorial". It is clear that this is a pure money-making venture, and it seems, to me at least, to be exploitative of the victims of 9/11. I dropped a lot more HCL shares immediately after seeing this build in person, because it so outraged me on a personal level that you would construct what you call a "memorial" with so little thought or effort.

    So, as you can see, the reasons why I disliked your WTC transaction are much different from your speculations. We can continue this public dialog, if you would like, or we can discuss such things in private instead.

    --- Begin Quote ---

    "LukeConnell Vandeverre: The major reason for the significan’t decline in the HCL share price is a direct result of the large number of HCL shares sold by Shaun Altman over the past 2-3 weeks. Do you mean am I getting approached with business opportunities in my position?"

    --- End Quote ---

    Not true. The reason for the decline in PRICE is due to the fact that nobody is willing to buy shares at the prices that you seem to feel HCL is worth. The market disagrees with your assessment. I don't have so much as one share for sale as an open order below 6.00 per share. The current price reflects the price that the MARKET values your HCL shares at. As much as I'd like to disagree with the market, given my remaining equity level, the market is never wrong.

    I do hope that you will change your management style, sir, so that the market will revalue your shares and the price will appreciate. Blaming me for the share value is not the solution though. For better or for worse, YOU are the CEO, and the responsibility for all things, good or bad, ends at YOUR desk.

    Not that this matters much, since you don't seem to want to be accountable to us (the owners of HCL) anyhow. In the real world, the shareholders would have at least fired you over this WTC fiasco, and you'd quite possibly be on the way to jail. It is fortunate for you, I guess, that as you say above, "this isn't real" I'm no longer convinced that this is fortunate for us (the owners of HCL). I hope to be proved wrong, as there is no other recourse available besides simply sitting and waiting.

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    Dear Shaun,

    Thanks for your comments on the story. We did IM you notifying you of the story URL but perhaps we weren't explicit about looking for your comment. Apologies for that as we're strong believers in right of reply.

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    The real truth here is that Shaun is mad he didn't get his big payoff. He was hoping to sell controlling interest in the exchange to Anshe Chung for $150k. The WTC deal put the kibosh on that. He has still made several times more than myself in his firesale of his stock (for I would guess about the same amount of work the WTC requires, or less, in his reprogramming of the WSE system).

    Shaun was also hoping to take over Brautigan & Tuck as well. Before this deal went through, he was kissing up to me about how great the build was, that he wanted some of my land to build his own skyscraper, but that he wasn't going to put a single linden into my own firms IPO, because he decided he could get a better deal by holding out until "after your IPO fails" (his words), to negotiate for more stock from me. As if I would desire to do business with a person who seeks profit from another persons failures. I shudder to think that he would also try to sell my own company out to Anshe Chung after that as well.

    Anshe, of course, wants to control the entire economy of SL, she wants to be able to decide who is allowed to raise capital in SL (herself and her alts, and her cronies, of course). She thought she had the capital market in a chokehold with her control of SLX, where she could restrict the exchange limits of smaller land developers and estate owners, preventing them from bringing more capital inworld. WSE is a threat to her economic dominance, because it gives power back to the people to pool capital for the development of the SL economy.

    She thought her close friend Shaun could give her that opportunity to take control of the WSE. That didn't happen, so they are dumping their stock hoping to panic people. I hear Anshe wants to open her own exchange. Pfft, if her record is going to speak for itself, I doubt anybody is going to trust their money in her hands.

    As for the World Trade Center, it is still nearing completion. We are ready to start leasing one building. The other will be completed this coming week. As they are placed adjacent to the WSE, in the nicest estate with the best infrastructure and security in all of SL, they sit in the most valuable real estate in SL, bar none. That, and the technology we've developed to make buildings of this size useful, are what make these buildings so valuable.

    Firstly, the elevators: non-physical, with 19 person capacity, these menu driven elevators travel 440 meters in under 10 seconds, even when a sim is locked down with physics off for security reasons. They travel in complete smoothness, with a fine decor that is unmatched. The elevator cars are coordinated by a central server that decides which cars to send to which floors, like any normal RL elevator system does.

    Secondly: prims. Occuping a half sim of land area, these buildings will be able to lease out over 20,000 prims to their tenants, using furniture rezzors for most of these, this prim-share concept is the wave of the future. Our unique multi-setting rezzors not only work flawlessly, they work WITH the Apez.biz rental/lease bot (NOT SLX).

    Thirdly: structural efficiency: while each tower is 100x100 meters in footprint, and 420 meters tall (making them the largest buildings in all of SL), with 20 floors, a lobby, and two level basements, the structures themselves only require 170 megaprims to construct. The structures have been thoroughly tested by our estate management for script and collision lag, and found little to none of the issues that are popularly claimed by the more prim-happy builders.

    Using conventional methods of valuing business opportunities, the two year potential revenues of this complex reaches 18,720,000 L$, far in excess of the value of the stock the buildings were sold for. If Shaun thinks one sim is as good as any other in SL, he should ask a real life major corporation: where would you want your corporate HQ: in East Podunk, South Dakota, or across the street from the New York Stock exchange?

    As for Shaun attacking these structures regarding 9/11, how dare you? A friend of my family died in that tragedy, I know very well what 9/11 represents. The WTC victims were not people who were occupied about memorials and political posturing, they were men and women of commerce, who ardently believed in the value of global trade in making a better world. I can think of no better way to commemorate their lives, than to make my WTC buildings into temples of commerce for this new world economy, especially as more of the old world economy starts shifting into ours.
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    Why not be honest? We were talking about a merger, not an acquisition, and you wanted to do it while your IPO was still in progress if we did it. I couldn't do that because it's impossible to figure out how to value a merger while your IPO is still running and we have no clue how many shares will end up outstanding. You insisted that it would sell out, but it didn't. How many times have you extended it now? It's still got 30,000,000+ shares left to go right?

    What is it that you think you gain by putting a negative spin on our merger discussion in a public forum? Hard numbers are needed to figure those types of valuations out. You can't do a merger while you're unsure of even such a basic thing as how many shares will be in float for one of the companies. It's just that simple.

    Also, I was never going to sell controlling interest of HCL to Anshe Chung, nor did she ever want controlling interest. You've invented this in your head.

    Kissing up to you? I was just looking for a place for an urban build, and your sims seemed ideal. If you will recall though, I was asking about the land. I remarked that the towers seemed like empty shells inside, or something to that effect. This was of course before you started in with your conspiricy theories, calling my friend a nazi, etc. I liked you back then, before I knew you better.

    Mad because I didn't get a big payoff? I'm actually quite happy with the price I got for the shares I sold. If I thought the stock was mis-valued, I wouldn't sell it. I will say that it is a shame that things keep happening to cause me to revise my valuation of HCL downwards. Why don't you guys generate some GOOD news for us? Are you too busy talking to the press and cooking up back-room deals to devalue equity?

    My deal with HCL vs. yours is apples vs. oranges, and we both know that. There was no pressing need to have a build like that which justified a price so far above market. There was a pressing need to have the exchange re-developed, given the situation at the time. It amazes me how quickly some of you guys forget the situation that WSE was in when Luke and I struck a deal to have it re-developed.

    I have no farther response to anything you've said about the WTC build, as I believe I've made my position quite clear in the above post. Anyone's of course welcome to visit it as I did, and decide for themselves if I'm right or wrong. A victim plaque with zigzag underlines on names from a spell checker though? I mean.. really.. come on! You didn't have 2 seconds to fix that for your memorial? You also haven't addressed whether or not you licensed the video you're showing. I hope so.

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    Wow, Lowell you've touched I nerve here. Great critical interview, opened a can of worms.
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    You know, I never got the point of the term can of worms. You open a can of worms, you got a bunch of worms. Now, open a can of bees. That would be interesting. =D
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    Actually Shaun, anybody competent can value a company. Nicholas Portocarrero of Ginko has stated that BNT is "The best value on the market today". Full stop.

    Fact is that HCL stock price has dropped solely because you dumped the stock. Where were your demands for a fair valuation when you merged with WSE? WSE had a good number of companies on its exchange listing then, you had one, your own. WSE was clearly a more capitalized market, even if its code was malfunctioning (to put it politely). Instead of taking, say, a stock position equal to Lukes position in HCL (who had I believe about 20% of the company at that point), you demanded a new stock issue equal to 100% of the existing stock issue, so you owned 50% of the WSE. When you did the stock swap of WSE stock for HCL stock, again, you were greedy, and demanded another new stock issue equal to 100% of the existing shares.

    Then, rather than waiting for the market to develop more, make HCL stock worth more, you just dump your stock like some day trader, the stock price plummets due to YOUR fire sale antics, then you have the balls to turn around and claim my piddly 2 million share issue "diluted" the stock value. Facts are, I haven't sold, I've bought. I had 1.1 million shares of HCL when this whole ruckus started, now I have over 1.3 million. Buyers don't cause prices to go down, they cause them to go up. Its excess supply that makes prices drop, and you are the source of excess supply.

    And don't keep trying to lie about the sales to Anshe. How about we both demand (along with Anshe, fat chance there), that Luke release the records? I dare you. If you are so sure of yourself, lets publicize the records. If I'm wrong, I'll apologize, but I think you won't ask for it. You prefer to operate in anonymity. I'm the one with my real name up there, not you.

    We're all waiting....
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    Hi IntLibber,

    Until you begin actually answering my questions, I'm through responding to your propoganda and inuendo. Will you be answering them, or just continuing to vent and whine?

    Also, I don't believe I've lied about any stock sales to Anshe or anyone else. Can you point me to a URL where I've lied about a stock sale? It's actually YOU who's lying about stock sales to Anshe. Maybe you don't mean to though.

    It's possible that you've just been mis-informed, as you have not been a direct party to any part of this stuff you keep mis-speaking about, and thus all of your "information" has been coming from third parties. With this in mind, allow me to set you straight. After that, if you continue to spew this nonsense everywhere you can type a commet, at least we'll know for sure that you're a liar rather than possibly mis-informed.

    You repeatedly claim that she was trying to buy controlling interest in HCL, for various evil reasons that you've invented. The fact is that she was NEVER interested in a number even APPROACHING 50%, and only a fraction of what she WAS buying was to come from me. I know that you will have some trouble accepting this, as it doesn't mesh well with your Anshe conspiracy theories, or even the mathematics you've acquired from the third parties who have been "informing you", but that's how it is.

    Why don't you focus on improving our HCL investment, or even on finishing your IPO, instead of hunting me down on various blogs and attacking me all day? Your IPO does still have over 30 million shares to go, yes? After how many extensions now? How many more extensions will the WSE allow you? It seems to me like you should have a lot of better things to do. I know I do.

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    Here's is a log of the fraud, deception & incompetance perpetrated by Luke Connell against HCL sharholders. Dont give me rheteric, give me answers

    - The initial Hope Capital prospectus had $L2 million budgeted for Market setup. In the end it cost $L3.2 Million, and half of the WSE income stream. To get that income stream back Luke had to print 12.5 million shares to issue to Shaun Altman. The market crash and subsequent total melt down was entirely the fault of Luke Connell
    - The initial HCL prospectus stated that World Currency Exchange shareholders were to receive 20 HCL shares for each 1 WCE held. I was a WCE shareholder, I never received my shares. Where did they go?? Who got them. I can only assume that the ended up in Luke Connells personal account. I took this matter up with Luke Connell, only to be told "It's just a game". He stole USD from me and I want them back.
    - The initial HCL prospectus, dated 22 December, states that Luke Connell will not sell any of his personal HCL stock for 6 months. According to the last HCL report Luke has sold 1 million shares, such a dumping of shares has significantly devalued the HCL stock, ripping off HCL IPO investors,Luke Connell has committed fraud.
    - The initial HCL prosectus states that HCL was to be a company made up of 10 million shares. People invested based on this, suddenly we found out that 2.5 million shares had been issued. Who too? Why? What were the terms? Why weren't current HCL shareholders invited to invest? It turns out that Luke Connell had sold off shares significantly below market rate to a bunch of his mates. Connell finally informed the market of the terms almost 3 months after the issue. I invested in Hope Capital based on the prospectus presented to me, Why were my shareholders diluted without my asking??
    - Why didn't Luke Connell take 5 minutes to do the odd check or two when companies listed?? Was he not concerned about WSE's reputation, and the damage that a fraud scandal would bring with it?? Apparently not.
    - Companies listing have been trying to list at terms of say 5 million shares total, 1 million IPO. Connell then changes the IPO, WITHOUT the approval of the company owner, lists it, and suddenly they are selling 1 million
    shares for 2.5 million outstanding. This is theft, fraud, deception and gods know whatever. Connell is selling that person asset far cheaper than they had applied for, without their permission. Who lists is up to the CEO, but the terms of that listing is totally up
    to company owner. If Luke doesn't like the terms then he
    can simply refuse to list them, but cannot change the terms of the listing without owner approval.
    - You argue that someone should be able to analyse a stock and value, that is true. I read the HCL "report", what was the net profit?? Why was capital listed as income?? Why was Capex listed as a liability?? Why were tier fees, wages etc listed as liabilities. It was a nice little "bank rec", but what I really wanted was a profit & loss. It was 5 pages of crap, nothing more. As for Nicholas Portocarerro, and his BNT comments, he is entitled to his opinion, but if you are going to put up an argument about "analysing a share" could you at least give us some analysis, not opinions
    - As for analysis, here's my analysis of HCL. The only people trading on the WSE are funds looking to move the market in their favour to make their portfolios looks good, and the odd resident with a couple of hundered of lindens up their sleeve. Anyone with any intelligence and proper purchasing power has sold out and left. The WSE is on track to average a mere 60 million turnover a month, thats 1.8 million in revenue. Luke Connell gave very little financial information in his report, so let's be generous and say that HCL will get 2.5 million a month in revenue. Once costs are taken out, budgeted at 60% of income, per the prospectus, that leaves HCL with a monthly profit of 1 million, 12 million a year. There are 27 million shares outstanding, that's 44c a share, currently the market is so depressed the P/E ratios are at 1. In a buoyant market P/E ratios may hit 3 (This is SL, not RL). So in current market conditions I rate HCL a 44c stock, maybe if the market ever recovers I might rate it an 80c stock. Factoring the fraud, lies, incompetance of Luke Connell, the illiquidity of the market, the lack of barriers to competition and the fact that there are people out there far more competant than Luke Connell who will blow WSE away,the damage to the HCL brand the fraud scandal did, and the fact that I will never get any say whatsoever in the running of HCL, I seriously rate HCL a 10c stock. I will not pay anymore than that, because that is what I value them at. So I suggest you stop buying,because you are buying a dog stock.

    Before you cry "defamation and slander", not a problem I am willing to go to court on this matter, should Mr Connell think it necessary. What is it they say about the best defence against defamation?? "Prove that it's true", I can prove each and every allegation I have made, it's all written in the company prospectus's and reports. There's a good chance, with all the fraud committed, that Mr Connell will then be taken away and criminally charged.

    Answers Intlibber, and dont give me rheteric crap, and dont you dare tell me that ripping people off their hard earned USD is a "game".
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    Luke your a scam dude, it's just one big messy lie... people trusted you... well checkout how much people lost there L$ on you... 80% portofolio losses and more on HCL hmmm and other stocks owned by you ... how do you think that makes people feel about it & you ha? you wasting our money and time with a big fat smile on your face I know, having your 15 minutes of fame ... well get a grip sucker !!!


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