One of the largest sugar producers in the world and a multi-billion rand South African business is facing the consequences of its own suspicious practices this week. It would seem that the Tongaat Hulett have been cooking the books, rather than their own sweet produce, and they’ve been dubbed as the latest “Steinhoff” in Mzansi.
Tongaat Hulett have suspended trading on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) and its London counterpart (FTSE 100). Their most-recent financial results have been delayed as investigators dig deeper into a series of irregularities reported at the company.
Shares in Tongaat Hulett suspended. from SENS: "There is not currently sufficiently reliable information to enable the Board to update the financial information in the September 2018 Interim Results or the February 2019 Trading Statement with confidence.
— Bruce Whitfield (@brucebusiness) June 10, 2019
Who are Tongaat Hulett?
Financial irregularities and comparisons to Steinhoff
We haven’t been able to uncover too much as it stands, but it seems the trouble has come from the very top. In the same way the financial behemoth of Steinhoff came crashing down, it appears the sugar giants are going the same way. Their executives have been benefitting from bonuses when workers are facing extreme struggles.
Over 5 000 retrenchments letters have been sent to staff, as the industry titan braces for impact from the results of an advanced forensic audit. We can expect to learn about chaotic financial decisions and suicidal economic policies that have brought Tongaat Hulett to this point.
How much is Tongaat Hulett worth?
In the past five years, the group have been able to generate revenue of around R15 billion annually. However, with the sugar trade hitting a slump, it seems Tongaat Hulett haven’t adapted to the times.
Tongaat Hulett share price for Monday 10 June
Shares had plummeted by 5.3% on Monday afternoon before trading ceased on the markets. When they do get up and running again, expect that number to tumble even further. Tongaat Hulett’s shares are currently worth 1 321 ZAC / R13.21 at the close of business on Monday 10 June.
Whoops, When trading resumes, whenever that will be, you watch that stock sink like the Titanic
That sugar stock has develoiped severe diabetes
— @Smalltalkdaily Research (@smalltalkdaily) June 10, 2019
Five essential facts
The 117-year-old business isn’t in the news very often, but that’s all about to change. One could be forgiven if this was their first encounter with the organisation – here are some quick facts to help you get better acquainted.
- The company were formed in 1892 following a merger between two sugar producers in Tongaat, KZN.
- Their CEO is JG Hudson – a name which could become synonymous with that of Markus Jooste’s.
- Tongaat Hulett Developments are a property management project created by the company. They build and maintain commercial, residential and industrial properties/resorts.
- They are South Africa’s largest producer of starch and glucose.
- The company also have branches in Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Swaziland.