Some 28 institutional investors are planning to bring legal proceedings against Danish marine fuel supplier OW Bunker that filed for bankruptcy in November 2014, Danish pension fund APT said.
In December 2014, a number of institutional investors launched an investigation into the bankruptcy to determine whether there are grounds for asserting legal liability.
The investigation has, among other things, focussed on errors and flaws in the prospectus prepared in connection with OW Bunker’s IPO, liability in connection with the offering and the sale of shares in OW Bunker as well as the management’s liability for OW Bunker’s operations in the period from the IPO until the bankruptcy, APT said.
Based on the conclusions of the investigation, the 28 institutional investors representing claims for more than DKK 800 million (USD 120 million) have decided to collectively bring legal proceedings against relevant parties.
Two actions will be brought, one concerns prospectus liability and will be brought against OW Bunker, relevant former members of OW Bunker’s management and relevant Altor entities.
The other action concerns liability for non-compliance with the disclosure obligations under stock exchange regulation and will be brought against OW Bunker and relevant former members of OW Bunker’s management.
The law firm Bruun & Hjejle will be representing the investors in the proceedings. The law firm Accura and the auditing firm KPMG will assist Bruun & Hjejle.
“It should not be possible for the company described in the prospectus to be declared bankrupt only six months after the IPO. It is therefore extremely important to identify what went wrong and to determine responsibility. Both in order to obtain the best possible compensation for our clients’ losses, to shed light on the weaknesses of the framework conditions for IPOs, and not least to ensure that something like this will not happen again,” said Anders Damgaard, CIO at PFA Pension.
“It is our duty towards ATP’s members to seek to recover as much as possible of the loss incurred as a result of OW Bunker’s bankruptcy. This was a highly negative event on the Danish stock market, and there is a strong need for clarifying the events preceding the bankruptcy and determining responsibility,” adds Kenneth Joensen, Chief General Counsel at ATP.