De Beers Denies Allegations by African Diamonds

by Edon Ophir

De Beers is seeking a full retraction of a statement made Wednesday by African Diamonds claiming that De Beers failed to notify African Diamonds of a disposal of shares. The board of African Diamonds said they had been informed by their registrars that 1 million shares in an account allegedly controlled by De Beers were sold or transferred without the company being notified.

If African Diamonds claims are true, than De Beers would be in breach of Financial Services Authority (FSA) rules.

“We take our regulatory obligations extremely seriously and confirm that we made the necessary filings in accordance with the relevant regulations,” De Beers stated in response.

According to African Diamonds, the account in question held 4,423,293 shares (5.8 percent) and now holds 3,423,293 shares (4.49 percent). The company is now asking the Financial Services Authority (FSA) to examine the trades.

“This is very disappointing and strange,” said African Diamonds Chairmen John Teeling. “In recent weeks, a senior director of De Beers turned down an offer to sell their block at a price significantly higher than the prices they obtained in the market.  Subsequently, other approaches were made to De Beers’ executives to sell their shares with no response.”

courtesy of IDEX online

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