Regulator keeps Orey share trading suspended

 In Business, Companies, Finance, Funds, News

The CMVM has decided to keep Orey Antunes’ shares and all of its other listed securities suspended because its 2019 results presentation has been postponed beyond the legal deadline which in turn has meant it has failed to ratify its PER – Special Revitalisation Plan.

The regulator decided “to extend the suspension of trading in the shares of Sociedade Comercial Orey Antunes and other related instruments, as a result of the issuer not having published periodic financial information on time,” reports the Portuguese stock market regulator CMVM.

The suspension began on July 13. At the time, the CMVM explained that the decision by the Board of Directors of the capital markets regulator was based on the fact that the company, currently in PER, did not present the accounts within the legally defined period.
In April, Orey Antunes announced to the market that: “the deadline for the Court to make a decision on the ratification of the Special Revitalisation Process (PER), to which it is subject, is still pending”.
The conclusion of this process was having an impact on audit work related to 2019, thereby making it impossible to complete the preparation of the financial statements for the said year within the period stipulated.
In this context, Orey Antunes informed investors “that it intends to submit its accounts by September 30 of this year”. As a result, Orey’s shares will remain suspended.
Founded in 1886, Orey Antunes has pursued various businesses over its long history, but over the past decade decided to focus strongly on the financial sector.
However, it ended up with a financial black hole of €12 million by 2019 which it blamed on the financial crisis of 2007-2014 and the Bank of Portugal and asked its creditors to write off up to 95% of its debts.
Its founder Rui D’ Orey had started the company selling iron and steel but by the turn of the 20th century linked up with a business partner Antunes dos Santos and became a shipping agent.
The company continues as a shipping agents to this day, but it was its foray into the uncharted waters of finance which has been the undoing of Orey Antunes.
In the second half of the 20th century, the company expanded into tour cruises, the naval sector, and even the hotel business by 1986 when it celebrated its centenary and did so by getting listed on the stock market.
In 1999, it started the hedge fund Opportunity Fund at a time when no one could have imagined the economic crisis that would hit the world after the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2007.
In 2009, the group underwent restructuring and its CEO Duarte D’Orey strengthened the company’s focus on the financial sector by creating a venture capital fund called Orey Capital Partners.
However, with the collapse of Lehman Brothers and the growth of stiff competition from other VCs in the market, Orey struggled.
In 2019 the company’s financial viability was seriously in question and the company was forced into a Special Revitalisation Process which affects the holding as a whole, without impacting the company’s maritime operations.
Today, the company Sociedade Comercial Orey Antunes, a holding, which is now undergoing revitalisation, has just one employer on its pay roll and three board members led by the company’s CEO Duarte D’Orey. The group of companies which it is associated with, however, employs over 300 people and in 2019 recorded a total turnover of €72.7 million divided between operations in Portugal, Angola, Mozambique and Spain.
A Special Revitalisation Plan is available to natural or legal persons with economic difficulties or in imminent insolvency. However, all applicants must prove that they also meet certain conditions which will enable their economic recovery.
The PER is part of the Revitalisation Programme (Programa Revitalizar) and is an alternative judicial instrument to insolvency, which gives companies in difficulty and/or facing imminent insolvency the possibility to negotiate with their creditors, leading to the revitalisation of its activity. Therefore, this does not apply to companies declared insolvent by a court of law, or after opening of insolvency proceedings. This instrument protects the productive capacity of the company and the jobs, by maintaining activity and  suspension of debt recovery during the negotiation process. The recovery plan is made viable by creditors.