Multinational cement manufacturer company LafargeHolcim Bangladesh Limited was hiding price-sensitive information regarding the recent unusual hike in its share price.
In the last one month, its share price jumped by 64% to stand at Tk59.40 per share on Sunday at the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE).
The DSE earlier this month sent a letter to the company asking it to explain reasons for this unusual share price hike. The company on 4 January replied that there was no undisclosed price sensitive information for the recent price hike and the increase in volume of its shares.
However, on Sunday, the company suddenly made an announcement on the DSE website that it has started the commercial operation of a new plant to produce clinker's raw material limestone from 9 January.
The company invested Tk40.10 crore from its own fund to set up the new plant with capacity to produce 12 lakh tonnes of limestone at the existing factory premises in Sunamganj. But they did not publish the news in stipulated time as per securities rules regarding price sensitive information, said a top official of a brokerage firm seeking not to be named.
The Business Standard called the phone numbers of LafargeHolcim officials but they did not receive the phone.
Md Rezaul Karim, spokesperson and executive director of the Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission, told The Business Standard, "Our surveillance department is working on this issue. If there was any violation of rules, the commission will take action."
Meanwhile, LafargeHolcim posted a 31% surge in its operating profit in the July-September quarter of 2020 in the post-shutdown period.
During the period, the company's operating profit stood at Tk84.4 crore compared to Tk64.2 crore in the same period of 2019, as per its financial statement.
The company also witnessed a 3% increase in its net sales to Tk365.5 crore in the quarter on a year-on-year basis.
LafargeHolcim was listed on the capital market in 2003. Its paid-up capital is Tk1,161.37 crore.
Sponsors and directors of the company hold 64.68% of its shares, while institutional investors have 15.45%, foreign investors 0.86% and general investors 19.01%.