Steinhoff International Holdings N.V. - Legal proceedings until end of 2020
The Steinhoff International Holdings N.V. (ISIN: NL0011375019) which has a primary listing in Frankfurt a.M. (Germany) issued a statement regarding a postponed publication of the actual financial figures for 2017 and 2016. Naturally the stocks plunged more than 80%, wiping out a market capitalization of several billions Euro.
At the moment the markets expect a correction of the halfyear- and fullyear results by the management. The supervisory body of Steinhoff International Holdings adjourned the publication of the financial results until a new audit is carried out.
In the past years Steinhoff faced several speculations regarding an accounting fraud. These rumors were addresses directly by the company in an ad-hoc statement on 24th August 2017. Hereby all allegations were stated as misleading and wrong. Additionally Steinhoff issued an ad-hoc announcement on 18th Sepember 2017, which stated that all alleged accounting irregularities would be brought before the Commercial Court of Amsterdam, and would be dismissed.
Liability under German Securities Trading Law
Under German Securities Trading Law Art. 823 Abs. 2 BGB in connecting with Art. 37 v, 37 w WpHG a company is liable for any incorrect published financial reports and ad-hoc statements. Additionally a liablility under Art. 37 b WpHG is cognitable, due to the possibility, that ad-hoc disclosure was eventually inaccurate in the past. Under article 17 MAR (Market Abuse Regulation) further claims can be brought forward against Steinhoff. If a correction of past financial reports has to be carried out, the shareholders who purchased shares of the company can claim a restitution of their stock purchase in accordance with German Securities Trading Law. All shareholders who purchased their shares after the primary listing in Frankfurt in 2015 and held the shares on 5th December 2017 are eligible for monetary compensation.
While the registered office of the company is in the Netherlands, the competence of the German jurisdiction is given due to the fact that the company has a primary listing in Frankfurt. Under the European provisions of the Brussels Convention, the Intermediate Court of Frankfurt is competent for any possible claims of shareholders in Germany. In similar cases the competence of the German jurisdiction was accepted by the courts.
German class action in Frankfurt - Registration of claims until end of 2020
Recently the Intermediate Court of Frankfurt a.M. (OLG) started a class action under the Kapitalanlegermusterverfahrensgesetz (KapMuG) against the company. We register the claims in individual court proceedings for our clients until the end of 2020. Then the statute of limitation will apply.
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