Steinhoff disputes disclosure claim
The allegations relate to a $810m loan Steinhoff made to Swiss-based company GT Brand Holding in 2015
Steinhoff International has been forced to defend itself against damaging European media reports for the third time in as many months. On Wednesday, the share price slumped more than 4% to close at R59.40 after Reuters reported that — apparently contrary to European disclosure rules — it had not disclosed details of a substantial transaction with a related company. The allegations relate to a $810m loan Steinhoff made to Swiss-based company GT Brand Holding in 2015, shortly after it acquired a 45% stake in the company. Reuters quoted a European-based professor of international banking law and finance who said the loan was potentially market-sensitive information and should have been flagged. However, a second academic told Reuters that the relevant accounting rules were not clear-cut. "The rules don’t say exactly what size transactions need to be disclosed, so there is some judgment involved." The law describes a material transaction as one big enough to influence investors’ view of...