Long-serving boss takes time out for family and memories Goodbye, Cai Laixing. The Shanghai Industrial Holdings chairman is the longest-serving red-chip boss in Hong Kong. 'I am overaged, and have overstayed too as most other executives in Hong Kong usually move on after five to seven years,' said Mr Cai, who turns 66 in June. Thirteen years is long enough for the Shanghai veteran to have witnessed the bumpy road to capitalism, starting from his company's listing amid the red-chip fever, the toughing it out during the Asian financial crisis mid-way and ending with his company's repatriation to the mainland stock market last year just before the onslaught of the global subprime crisis. 'Hong Kong has left me with some unforgettable memories,' Mr Cai said. 'I am so lucky to have contributed to the co-operation between Hong Kong and Shanghai.' Next on the agenda are plans to dedicate some time to writing his memoirs and helping raise a granddaughter who always complains about never seeing him. The next chapter of Shanghai versus Hong Kong will be written by Teng Yilong, Mr Cai's successor, who even now is applying for a working visa to move to Hong Kong. Goodbye, Mr Shanghai. Back in the system And hello, Andrew Seaton, who starts today as the British consul-general in Hong Kong. In his first appointment, Mr Seaton will appear before the gathered ranks of the media to share his thoughts on returning for a third posting to Hong Kong. A China expert who studied at Peking University in the 1980s, Mr Seaton spent five years at the British Trade Commission, then another five years as deputy consul-general and trade councillor from 1995 to 2000. Thus, like paramount leader Deng Xiaoping, he has been in and out of the system three times in his career. Welcome on board, Mr Seaton. Banking on an apology There were some funny goings-on at yesterday's CEO Forum organised by the Trade Development Council. It started with Country Garden Holdings' Yeung Kwok-keung, whose cash-rich property flagship failed to raise a syndicated property loan last year. During the event, he commented: 'Don't believe it when banks tell you they will lend you money because they may not.' Mr Yeung's statement had the audience in laughter until it suddenly dawned on him that he was sitting among a panel of speakers that included Hang Seng Bank chief executive Raymond Or Ching-fai. 'Are they Hong Kong banks?' Mr Or said. An embarrassed Mr Yeung quickly apologised - not once but twice. Added-value package Li Ka-shing's media arm Tom Group last year offered former chief executive Tommei Tong Mei-kuen a pay cheque valued at HK$13.2 million and former Tom Online chief executive Wang Leilei took home a remuneration package of HK$20.79 million (mainly stock options) despite the firm losing HK$297 million. Both executives made similar amounts in salaries and bonuses in 2006 when the company recorded a HK$32 million profit. To put these salaries into perspective, take a look at Hongkong Electric Holdings group managing director Tso Kai-sum. He was paid HK$16.92 million, up 15 per cent, when his firm's profit soared to a record HK$7.45 billion. Only option to take Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing chief executive Paul Chow Man-yiu exercised 420,000 share options when the stock he held in the bourse traded as low as HK$8.28. He is now sitting on a paper profit of HK$58 million as of the stock's close yesterday at HK$146.50. What's more, Mr Chow still holds options for 3.29 million shares, at a market value of HK$482 million. The struggle for business How much are Hong Kong's small and medium-sized enterprises struggling on the mainland? Let's hear the story of Simon Shi Kai-biu, who was granted bankruptcy yesterday after his firm, Sun Motor Technology Group, was unable to pay its debt to Taiwan-listed Tai-I Group. For over 10 years, Mr Shi was president of the Hong Kong Small and Medium Enterprises Association.