Fortis shares fall 20% as Malaysian company’s open offer remains on hold

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IHH Healthcare had won a bid for a 31% stake in Fortis in 2018.

BENGALURU:

Shares of Fortis Healthcare fell nearly 20% on Thursday, seeing their biggest drop in nearly 15 years, after reports said the highest court ordered the continuation of a stay on IHH Healthcare’s open offer for the company.

The Supreme Court also referred the issue of the Fortis-IHH deal to the Delhi High Court and ordered it to consider appointing a forensic auditor, UKTN TV-18 reported.

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Reuters was unable to immediately assess the order.

IHH had won an offer for a 31% stake in Fortis in 2018, leading to an open offer for a further 26% under Indian regulations.

The Supreme Court had blocked the open offer based on a plea filed by Japanese drugmaker Daiichi Sankyo, which sought to enforce an arbitration decision it won in a Singaporean court for a fraud claim against Fortis founders Malvinder Singh and Shivinder Singh.

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“…Supreme Court proceedings have been closed with certain directions and the suo-motu contempt is over. We are seeking legal advice to determine our future course of action,” Fortis said in a statement to the exchanges on Thursday.

Fortis shares fell the most since January 2008, with trading volumes around 21 times the 30-day average as of 0807 GMT

IHH and Daiichi did not immediately respond to Reuters’ requests for comment.

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