12 Dec 2014

Blis fined $30,000 for market breach

4:45 pm on 12 December 2014

Biotechnology company, Blis Technologies, has been censured by the Markets Disciplinary Tribunal and fined $30,000 for failing to share information with the market that materially impacted its share price.

The Dunedin-based company manufacturers a range of throat lozenges, designed to introduce healthy bacteria in the mouth and throat.

Its chief executive Barry Richardson learned that China's largest pharmaceutical company, Sinopharm, was expanding the test marketing of Blis products, to 600 stores from 30 stores.

That is a 200-fold increase.

But Mr Richardson did not think that was material information, and therefore likely to impact its share price.

So he did not share the news with the market, although he did share it with a journalist.

And when the story broke, five days later, on Sunday, 24 August, the board met and decided it was material information and a notice to the market was drafted.

However, the market received the notice after the shares started trading.

And by then, the share price had spiked up by 55 percent, on large volume.

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