Update 3: OW Bunker Shares on Matching Halt, Market Awaits "Significant Announcement"

Wednesday November 5, 2014
  • Update 1 - Added quote by Niels Henrik Jensen
  • Update 2 - OW Bunker has since announced a potential loss of around USD $125 million from fraudulent activity committed by senior employees at its Singapore-based subsidiary Dynamic Oil Trading, and a current mark to market loss of USD $150 million [Read in Full]
  • Update 3 - On November 6 OW Bunker says it now expects to be Insolvent, and has commenced in-Court restructuring. [Read in Full]

NASDAQ OMX Copenhagen has announced that trade in shares of Denmark-based OW Bunker have been placed on matching halt until further notice pending an announcement from the company.

A matching halt prevents the automatic matching of buy and sell orders, but manual trades can usually still be established.

No details as to why the matching halt was put in place were given in the statement, but the move is typical prior to a price sensitive announcement, and Shipping Watch reported that the market was awaiting a "significant announcement".

Oslo Børs says a matching halt is also appropriate if "there is a suspicion that some market participants have information that is not known by other participants, or if the security in question shows unusual changes in price or traded volume."

Danish investor site EuroInvestor.dk quoted OW Bunker Chairman Niels Henrik Jensen as saying, "We have nothing to add before we send a message out later today."

Shares in OW Bunker were up just 1.8 percent prior to the halt, after 108,100 shares were exchanged across 228 trades, representing less than 0.3 percent of the company's total 36,771,811 shares, according to data from the Exchange.

OW Bunker was listed in March and got off to a strong start after the initial public offering (IPO) was closed early due to better-than-expected investor demand, opening at 17.9 percent above the company's IPO price on the Nasdaq OMX Copenhagen.

However the share price has more than halved since the summer, and in recent weeks the bunker supplier has twice cut its full-year forecast for 2014, seen major investor Cantillon Capital Management LLC (Cantillon) take its stake below 5 percent, and been accused by Danish institutional investor ATP of a "breach of trust".

Last month OW Bunker appointed Kent Larsen as its new Executive Vice President and CFO.