Bumi suspends its shares after results delay

 
Suzie Neuwirth
SHARES in Bumi were suspended yesterday after further delays to its full-year results.

The FTSE 250-listed Indonesian coal miner informed the market that it would miss its latest end of April deadline and will apply to commence trading again once it has produced its results.

The company, which has been embroiled in a tug-of-war between its founder Nat Rothschild and the Bakrie family, said it still needed to verify a number of items on the balance sheet of its Berau Coal Energy subsidiary, amid allegations of irregularities in its earnings.

Rothschild said in a statement: “On 8 October 2012, I wrote to [CFO] Scott Merilees, copying Lord Renwick as chair of Bumi’s audit committee, calling for an emergency or interim audit of Berau.

“It is clear from today [22nd]’s announcement that this request was not followed up in a timely manner.

“If the board genuinely wants to create a clean and transparent company in which investors can have confidence, they need to investigate the unexplained movement of funds from Berau, overseen by Rosan Roeslani. At the same time, the board must explain why they didn’t act sooner to stop it.”

The company announced earlier this month that it is searching for a new CFO to replace Merilees on termination of his contract, in line with its intention of restructuring the board.

“We are taking all necessary steps to create a clean and transparent company with a balance sheet in which investors can have confidence,” said Nick von Schirnding, chief executive of Bumi.

The new management team at Berau is overseeing a full audit review, working with its auditor PwC and consultant Ernst & Young.