New Delhi: Hindenburg Research said on Thursday it will demand documents in legal discovery process if Adani Group files a lawsuit in the US against the short seller for its report on the Indian conglomerate.
It said that that the company fully stands by its report, and any action against them will be “meritless”. “Regarding the company’s threats of legal action, to be clear, we would welcome it,” the US-based short seller said.
“In the 36 hours since we released out report, Adani hasn’t addressed a single substantive issue we raised. At the conclusion of our report, we asked 88 straightforward questions that we believe give the company a chance to be transparent. Thus far, Adani has answered none of these questions,” Hindenburg Research said.
“If Adani is serious, it should also file suit in the US where we operate. We have a long list of documents we would demand in a legal discovery process,” it added.
Our response to Adani: pic.twitter.com/6NcFKR8gEL
— Hindenburg Research (@HindenburgRes) January 26, 2023
Hindenburg Research alleged that the Adani Group, led by the world’s third-richest person Gautam Adani, is involved in a massive and “brazen stock manipulation” and “accounting fraud scheme”. It said that the company is “pulling the largest con in corporate history”.
The allegations sent bonds and shares in the conglomerate’s companies down.
According to Reuters, it said key listed companies in the Adani Group had “substantial debt” which has put the entire group on a “precarious financial footing”.
It also said that seven Adani listed companies have an 85% downside on a fundamental basis due to what it called “sky-high valuations”.
Hindenburg’s report said five of seven key listed Adani companies have reported current ratios – a measure of liquid assets minus near-term liabilities – below 1. This, the short seller said, suggested “a heightened short-term liquidity risk”, the news agency said.
In a statement released on Wednesday, January 25, Adani Group said it was “shocked” that the report had been published without the company being contacted. “The report is a malicious combination of selective misinformation and stale, baseless and discredited allegations that have been tested and rejected by India’s highest court,” it said.
Research firm CreditSights in August 2022 had red-flagged the Adani Group’s debt-funded expansion appetite. Although, it later revised some of the calculations, but still raised concerns over the group’s overall debt levels.