TWE is gearing up to fight the class action

TWE is gearing up to fight the class action

Treasury Wine Estates (TWE) has said it will “vigorously defend” itself after being hit with a shareholder lawsuit over allegations of “deceptive conduct” in the US.

Litigation firm IMF confirmed today (2 July) an action has been filed at Australia's Federal Court. The claims relate to allegations of “misleading and deceptive conduct and breaches of continuous disclosure obligations between 17 August 2012 and 14 July 2013 in connection with the performance of its (TWE's) United States operations,” a filing to the Australian Stock Exchange said.

A single applicant, Brian Jones, is named in the proceedings, who acquired 1,000 TWE shares in September 2012 at an average price of AUD4.76 per share, according to TWE. Jones is also bringing the claim on behalf of other "group members".

IMF flagged last October it was planning to fund legal action from current and former TWE shareholders.

However, in a separate statement to the Australian Stock Exchange today, TWE said it “strongly denies any and all allegations” against it and will “vigorously defend the legal proceeding”.

Last year, TWE announced a AUD160m (US$145.7m) writedown in the US as it looked to destroy out-of-date stock

Last week, the firm's new CEO, Michael Clarke, flagged a further AUD260m (US$243.6m) writedown in fiscal 2014 as it looks to “reset” with a raft of structural changes. 

Expert analysis

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