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COPENHAGEN, Dec 10 (Reuters) – A group of large Danish institutional investors has initiated an investigation of the collapse of OW Bunker, the ship fuel supplier that had listed only earlier this year, they said in a joint statement on Wednesday.
The company, which had been valued at $1 billion when it listed at the end of March in the second largest IPO since 2010, came crashing down last month after losing almost $300 million in hedging losses and what it called “fraud”.
“The purpose of the investigation is to understand the events leading up to the bankruptcy and to obtain information that can be used to determine whether there are grounds for asserting legal liability,” the statement said.
The group of institutional investors include, among others, ATP, PFA, AP Pension, DIP, Industriens Pension, JOEP, Maj Invest, PensionDenmark and SEB.
Nordea, the bank that helped bring OW Bunker to the stock market and remained a shareholder until its collapse, was not part of the group.
OW Bunker filed for bankruptcy in November, saying it had lost money on a credit line estimated at between $120 million and $130 million given by its Singapore-based subsidiary Dynamic Oil Trading to Tankoil Marine Services.
The company’s board said it had not approved such a credit line, which was contrary to its rules. OW Bunker had also lost some $150 million in hedging losses, which it blamed on falling oil prices.
The investors said law firms Accura and Bruun & Hjejle would lead the investigation and would be assisted by Ernst & Young.
“The investigation will cover the events surrounding the IPO and those leading up to the bankruptcy of OW Bunker,” the statement said. (Reporting by Ole Mikkelsen; editing by Sabina Zawadzki)
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