Short sellers made a killing on Steinhoff last week and among them was an until recently almost unheard-of entity called Viceroy. Its research has ripped into what its three-man team call Steinhoff’s "Ponzi scheme". Business Day this week asked them: What is Viceroy? (We’re) an independent research group based in the US. Our focus is to research entities that we find have signs of accounting irregularities and potential fraud. To what end? We take a financial position in our research and our readers should assume we have a position on the stock. Why do you insist on being anonymous? We do so because we don’t get really many nice things said to us … We don’t have a problem with criticism and we’re happy to be called out on inaccurate research. The major issue we have is that there have been issues in the past where short sellers are targeted that go beyond the realm of legality. There’s lots of emotional investment in the stock markets… What alerted you to Steinhoff? The business was...

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