Natasha Chamba, Business Reporter
REGIONAL sugar producer, Tongaat Hulett (THL), has deferred publishing of its periodic financial results to October 2019 pending conclusion of its financial review and associated forensic investigation.
The Hippo Valley Estates Limited parent company has been conducting a strategic and financial review since February 2019.
Last month THL announced that the process had revealed certain past practices that would result in the restatement of its audited consolidated financial statements for the year ended March 31, 2018.
“The board of THL concluded that reliance on the 2018 financial statements was no longer appropriate and that the financial information therein should not be relied upon,” said the company in a public notice yesterday.
“To conclude the financial review and the associated forensic investigation, THL has delayed the publishing of its financial statements until October 2019 and has secured a voluntary suspension of the listing of its shares on the Johannesburg and London Stock Exchanges, while these reviews are completed.”
In light of the above, Hippo Valley Estates’ board dismissed any alleged deliberate or fraudulent errors, misstatements or financial malpractices by THL, which might have been aimed at misleading the investing public, as reported earlier by international media.
“Hippo Valley Estates adopted the THL accounting policies and as such, any changes to the group accounting policies that may result from the THL accounting review of its financials are likely to impact the company’s financials,” it said.
“As a result the Board is performing its own internal review of the company’s financial statements to critically assess the company’s accounting policies in the context of dynamics in the local environment.”
As such, Hippo Valley said the review of THL’s financials has resulted in a delay in the release of the local unit’s financial results for the year ended March 31, 2019, which are due by June 30, 2019 saying these will now be published on or before July 31, 2019.
The move follows the granting of an extension by the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange for the publication of the abridged audited financial results.
“The board continues to give these matters its urgent attention. A further announcement will be made as and when appropriate,” it said.