Aphria Inc CEO Responds to Short-sellers Report

Aphria Inc (NYSE:APHA) vows to give its ‘side of the story’ regarding a short-seller’s report that has plagued the company’s shares. It is likely that the management’s first defense failed to impress stakeholders and it is for that reason that the company’s CEO Vic Neufeld is promising a detailed report in defense of its allegedly worthless overseas transactions.

Questionable dealings

QCM and Hindenburg recently published a report questioning the process the company used to acquire purportedly worthless assets in Jamaica, Argentina and Colombia. The report further alludes to a possible conspiracy by a few insiders who benefited from the dealings in question to cover up the questionable nature of the transactions.

It is alleged that the transactions totaling $280 million were uncalled for and that it benefited a few insiders at the expense of majority shareholders, allegations that Neufeld terms as slanderous.

Defense

SOL Global Investments Corp., the Jamaican-based cannabis firm in which Aphria acquired its Cannabis License from has since come forward to defend the transaction. The Jamaican-based firm through its CEO Brady Cobb challenged the short-sellers’ report arguing that the companies have invested in the fall of Aphria and other Cannabis-related firms by publishing false information.

The company has threatened to sue the short-sellers for defamation, a threat that QCM’s CEO says he is “eager” to see happen. The QCM boss confirmed that they are in possession of critical documents detailing the transactions in question that they will present for review. The CEO went ahead to slam investment banks that oversaw the transaction alleging that they were in position to identify red-flags but they chose not to.

Cormark Securities Inc. the firm that provided financial counsel to Aphria regarding the transactions has also defended its opinion saying that they gave their fair and honest advice to Aphria.

Demotion

Following the publication of the report, Eight Capital’s Graeme Kreindler has since demoted Aphria’s stock from a “Buy” status to “Neutral.” Eight Capital’s Graeme Kreindler argues that the situation around the company’s stock has been uncertain since the publication of the report.

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