The long suffering shareholders of suspended NSE listed firms Hutchings Biemer and A. Baumann can finally look forward to getting their wealth unlocked after the Capital Markets Authority (CMA) promised to delist the firms in the next six months.
Hutchings Biemer has been suspended from trading at the bourse for 16 years, and investment and trading firm A. Baumann for nearly nine.
The CMA had said earlier that there were difficulties in conducting independent audits necessary before a delisting, citing a lack of relevant records and proper management in place.
The regulator now says that it has put in place a “defined timeline” within which to decide the fate of the two firms.
“We have been working with these companies for an extended time to try and address underlying issues … there have been delays, but they have now been subjected to very clear defined timelines in which that must be completed,” CMA chief executive Paul Muthaura told the Business Daily last week.
“We are projecting that this matter should be finalised within the next six months, so that there is a transparent process and the investors who have been stuck in those companies understand the implication of the exit, they understand the price at which they are exiting and then we’ll be able to confirm it (the delisting).”
Hutchings Biemer trading at the bourse was stopped in February 5, 2001 as the firm unsuccessfully planned to delist from the NSE.
CMA halted the retailer of office and home furnishing firm from trading in the stock market due to non-compliance with the continuing disclosure obligations, indefinitely freezing the wealth of investors who were opting out of the bourse.
Hutchings Biemer had about 153 shareholders at the time it was suspended, with a valuation of Sh7.3 million.
A. Baumann was suspended from trading at the bourse on May 27, 2008 for failing to meet listing conditions and full disclosure of operations and financials.
At the date of its last activity in the market, the firm had 381 shareholders and a market capitalisation of 42.6 million.
All other firms suspended at the bourse in recent years have either had their suspensions lifted, or completed their delisting successfully.
Rea Vipingo, which was the subject of a fierce takeover between rival shareholders, was suspended in November 2013.
It was ultimately delisted in 2015 after brothers Richard and Jeremy Robinow – who previously had a 57.04 per cent controlling stake – bought out the firm at Sh85 per share.
CMC Holdings, which was suspended in September 2011, was delisted from the bourse in 2015 after a successful takeover by Dubai based Al-Futtaim Group.