US-based Hindenburg Research accuses Adani Group of share rigging, fraud
A US activist investor research firm – Hindenburg Research – has alleged that Adani Group was “engaged in a brazen stock manipulation and accounting fraud”, a charge the conglomerate described as malicious, unsubstantiated, one-sided, and having done with malafide intention to ruin its share-sale. Hindenburg, a US-based investment research firm that specializes in activist short-selling, said its two-year investigation reveals that “the Rs.17.8 trillion (USD 218 billion) Indian conglomerate Adani Group has engaged in a brazen stock manipulation and accounting fraud scheme over the course of decades.”
The detailed report of Hindenburg Research, published on Wednesday termed Gautam Adani as the “largest con in corporate history”. The report created ripples in the Indian market. In the morning Hindenburg Research tweeted a long thread, which got more than eight million impressions in a few hours:
NEW FROM US:
Adani Group – How The World’s 3rd Richest Man Is Pulling The Largest Con In Corporate Historyhttps://t.co/JkZFt60V7f
— Hindenburg Research (@HindenburgRes) January 25, 2023
The report comes ahead of an Rs.20,000 crore follow-on share sale of Adani Group’s flagship Adani Enterprises. Group representatives said a statement in response would be issued later. The follow-on public offer (FPO) is slated to open on January 27 and close on January 31.
Adani Group says it is ‘shocked’ at Hindenburg report
Adani Group said it was shocked to see the report that came out without any attempt to contact it to get the factual matrix. “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 courts,” the ports-to-energy conglomerate said in a statement.
It went on to question the timing of the report, saying its publication ahead of the FPO “clearly betrays a brazen, malafide intention to undermine Adani Group’s reputation with the principal objective of damaging” the issue. Adani Group stocks fell after the report but recouped some of the losses. Adani Enterprises fell 2.5 percent but pared some losses after the statement to trade at 1.5 percent lower at 1350 hrs. Adani Ports & SEZ Ltd, which was down 6.23 percent at noon, too recovered some grounds and was down 5.1 percent at 1350 hrs.
“Gautam Adani, founder, and chairman of Adani Group has amassed a net worth of roughly USD 120 billion, adding over USD 100 billion in the past 3 years largely through stock price appreciation in the group’s seven key listed companies, which have spiked an average of 819 percent in that period,” the US researcher’s report said. The Hindenburg’s report details a web of Adani-family-controlled offshore shell entities in tax havens spanning the Caribbean and Mauritius to the United Arab Emirates, which it claims were used to facilitate corruption, money laundering, and taxpayer theft while siphoning off money from the group’s listed companies.
“Our research involved speaking with dozens of individuals, including former senior executives of Adani Group, reviewing thousands of documents, and conducting diligence site visits in almost half a dozen countries,” it said, detailing the roles of Gautam Adani’s brothers Rajesh and Vinod in all operations of money trail from so tax havens.
Hindenburg claimed to have uncovered “rudimentary efforts seemingly designed to mask the nature of some of the shell entities.” “Even if you ignore the findings of our investigation and take the financials of Adani Group at face value, its 7 key listed companies have 85 percent downside purely on a fundamental basis owing to sky-high valuations,” the report said adding key listed Adani companies have also taken on substantial debt, including pledging shares of their inflated stock for loans, putting the entire group on precarious financial footing.
The detailed report published by Hindenburg Research on Adani Group’s stock exchange manipulations, money trails through shells from tax havens, and dubious accounting practices are available at this link.
 Adani Group: How The World’s 3rd Richest Man Is Pulling The Largest Con In Corporate History – Jan 24, 2023, Hindenburg Research
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