The stock market regulator on Tuesday formed a four-member committee to look into the business activities of two listed concerns of Meghna Group of Industries-KA to protect the interest of the investors.
In May last year, the Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC) had earlier sent letters to Meghna Condensed Milk Industries and Meghna PET Industries asking them to explain the reasons behind their continuous losses. But the companies did not reply properly to the commission.
The commission move followed an inspection by the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) that found the factories were closed. The premier bourse submitted its report to the BSEC.
BSEC Joint director Md Saiful Islam, deputy director Shahrier Perves, assistant director Minhaz Bin Salim and Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) senior executive Md Rasel Rahman are the members of the inquiry committee.
The commission formed the committee based on the stock exchange report, said sources.
The two companies released their financial statements and held annual general meetings regularly, but did not inform investors about the factory shutdown.
Even the auditor of the companies, Islam Quazi Shafique and Co, did not mention anything about the state of production at the factories.
In its qualified opinion in the companies' financial statements, the auditor, however, expressed doubts about the future of the companies stating that their liabilities were more than their assets.
Meghna Condensed Milk started operations in 1999 with the announcement of setting up the largest condensed milk plant in the country.
The company was established with a loan from Sonali Bank under ICD Agro Based Project. It got listed on the stock market in 2001.
According to DES information, the company has been incurring losses for the last five years and its investors did not get any dividends for that period.
On the other hand, Meghna PET, which went into business in 1997, mainly produces PET bottles.
The firm, which also got listed on the capital market in 2001, has been in losses for the last five years.
The investors did not get any dividends from this company as well.
The sponsors and directors of the two concerns jointly hold a 50% stake in each company.
The last trading share price of Meghna Condensed Milk was Tk21.10 and Meghna PET Industries Tk24.70 at the DSE on Tuesday.