Heimatar - Simple hauling contract negotiations have ended up tangled in controversy this week after Mechanical Industries secured a large majority of contracts over other .
With trading routes from the core Matari worlds to the frontiers of the Great Wildlands becoming more lucrative in the past year, massive trade contracts offered by a conglomerate of industrial corporations here have been the hot topic among investors for weeks.
The two expected front runners contending for these opportunities have been New Order Transportation, an old respected company who has had several successful past contracts with the conglomerate, and Mechanical Industries, an up and coming mercantile company founded on the fringes of the Wildlands itself. The two Matari corporations have been in direct competition for years in many markets stretching between their respective bases of operation.
Early forecasts by independent market analysts heavily favoured New Order in winning a majority of the contracts based on the corporation's long-standing relations with the client companies and excellent reputation for making tough runs on time and intact, leading to a sizable 8% gain in the company's stock over the past month. Yet, when the dealing was done and announced to the public, Mechanical Industries had somehow scored quite the corporate upset, securing 25 of the 27 contracts in question.
After reeling from the news and the subsequent drop of almost a quarter of the company's stock value, New Order Transportation is not taking the decision lying down. After an emergency shareholders meeting, New Order has decided to challenge the agreement, citing preliminary internal investigations that revealed 'suspicious' activity.
"We have always strived to succeed in our markets through asset security, punctuality, and hard work." said New Order CEO Haca Eskavert, "This doesn't mean we're not wary of the sort of tactics used by companies who do not share our values. We will not rest until we have exposed the truth behind this decision; and we have the resources, and the will, to uncover that truth."
Mechanical Industries CEO Sveard Otolf seemed unconcerned. "It should not surprise anyone that intelligent businesses value innovation and new ideas in those they chose to partner with. Our competitors have forgotten this, and when it came time to put hard ISK down, we simply provided a better, leaner solution for their needs, and it showed at the negotiation table."
New Order's investigations had best find what they seek, and soon. Industry insiders are whispering that Ms. Eskavert's position as CEO may be on the line soon should such inquiries prove fruitless.