Are you an investor with concerns over the recent Bellamy's Australia Ltd market announcements?

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If you purchased Bellamy’s Australia Limited (ASX:BAL) shares between 14 April 2016 and 1 December 2016, inclusive, then you may be eligible to join a proposed class action. Bellamy’s Australia Limited (Bellamy’s) is a public company listed on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX).

On 2 December 2016, Bellamy’s announced to the market a significant revenue downgrade. Since then its shares have been suspended from quotation on the ASX at the company’s request, pending a further announcement regarding the impact of trading conditions in China on its financials for the 2017 financial year. So far the announcements made by the company have resulted in a reduction of at least $500 million in shareholder equity.

ACA Lawyers is investigating whether Bellamy’s has breached its continuous disclosure obligations and/or engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct in statements made to the market. In particular, ACA Lawyers is examining statements made by Bellamy’s that its revenue and profit guidance would not be influenced by regulatory changes in China. As part of our case preparation we are in contact with potential experts in China and have obtained counsel’s advice.

In anticipation of a potential class action, ACA Lawyers is also in discussion with a number of Australian and international litigation funders who have expressed interest in providing funding for a potential class action against Bellamy’s.

Background

When Bellamy’s provided its FY2016 full year results on 19 August 2016 it stated that:

“Underpinning the sales and distribution opportunities in Australia and Asia is a supply chain team that is firmly focused on growing our supply of organic ingredients and manufacturing capacity. Strong forward planning and a commitment from our supply chain to meet the high demand for Bellamy’s products has ensured that not only have we been able to meet the exceptional growth in demand over FY16, but we will be able to supply a substantial uplift in manufacturing volumes from FY17 on.

The strong growth in revenue and earnings over the past 12 months has enabled Bellamy’s to invest back into the business during the second half of FY16 in terms of people, infrastructure and marketing. We will continue this programme, investing a further $15-20 million in FY17 to ensure we have the right platform in place to drive sustainable long-term growth and optimise long-term returns. The purpose of these investments is to build strategic platforms for long-term sustainable growth for shareholders beyond FY17.” 

Following the release of Bellamy’s FY2016 full year results, analysts at the majority of broking houses that cover the stock were tipping Bellamy’s shares would rise by between 30 per cent and 65 per cent over the next 12 months.

In its 2016 AGM presentation released on 19 October 2016, Bellamy’s made a number of positive statements about FY2017, including that:

“During FY2017 we will continue to utilise our growing earnings and cash flows to invest in our supply chain and other initiatives to drive sustainable growth and further optimise longer term returns.”

On 2 December 2016 Bellamy’s released a business update in which Bellamy’s stated:

– unaudited revenue for the period 1 July 2016 to 20 November 2016 is up 24 per cent to $93 million (compared to the same time last year);

– momentum has been tempered by temporary volume dislocation in China due to regulatory changeover and flow-on effects of restructuring the route-to-market in China impacting from late 1Q17;

– Bellamy’s 2016 Singles Day sales were stronger than compared to last years, however below expectations;

– Bellamy’s will continue to experience temporary volume dislocation until regulatory registrations are completed in China;

– the company expects EBIT margin will be moderately below 20 per cent as a result of investment to underpin long term ambitions of the company; and

– revenue for 1HFY17 is anticipated to be approximately $120 million with the expectation that 2HFY17 will be similar to the first half.

The general consensus of the market following the release of the FY2016 full year results was that Bellamy’s FY2017 revenue would rise by 45 per cent to $375 million and EBITA would rise 50 per cent to $83.3 million. The 2 December 2016 announcement stated that revenue in the first half of 2017 would be $120 million. The company also stated that the EBIT margin would be “moderately below” 20 per cent this financial year.

If you are a Bellamy’s shareholder and you would like to be kept updated on the progress of our investigation please email us at info@acalawyers.com.au.

To register your interest in the proposed class action please fill out this form. Registering your interest does not impose any obligation on you to proceed. You will be asked to sign a funding agreement and retainer at a later stage should you wish to participate in the action.