The grim peek inside Steinhoff’s raided kitchen during the AGM of the embattled furniture retailer last week appears to have spooked investors. In the aftermath of the meeting at the Sheraton in Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport, Steinhoff’s stock tumbled 15% to R2.21 on Monday — leaving the company, which has huge debt of R156bn, with a market value of just R9.5bn. The steep fall appears to have been a reaction to CEO Danie van der Merwe’s admission of just how frail the business had become in the months since December 5 when it admitted to "accounting irregularities" that exposed a €6bn hole in its accounts. At the AGM, Van der Merwe explained that after that, Steinhoff lost "virtually all available funding under our existing facilities, including credit insurance — the group was drained of all working capital". Though Steinhoff has since raised some money — €750m in funding, R3.7bn by selling 6% of Steinhoff Africa Retail and R3.75bn by selling 17% of KAP — this is hardly enough to ke...

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