Sirtex Medical Limited Class Action
IMF Bentham is co-funding a shareholder class action against Sirtex Medical Limited (ASX:SRX) (Sirtex) in respect of allegations concerning its conduct and that of its former Chief Executive Officer, Mr Gilman Wong, during the period from 24 August 2016 to 16 December 2016 (inclusive) (Relevant Period).
Sirtex manufactures and sells individual doses of a radioactive internal treatment for inoperative liver and colorectal cancer. Its principal markets are the United States, the European Union and Australia. The class action is being conducted by Maurice Blackburn Lawyers.
Investors who acquired an interest in ordinary shares in Sirtex traded on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) during the Relevant Period are invited to sign up using the details below.
The claims allege that the FY17 Dose Sales Growth Guidance was misleading and lacked a reasonable basis, that Sirtex was in breach of its continuous disclosure obligations under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) during the Relevant Period and that Sirtex misled the market in relation to its former CEO's alleged non-compliance with Sirtex's corporate governance policies.
Background to the class action
On 24 August 2016, Sirtex informed the market that it expected "double digit dose sales growth to continue in FY17 – large, under-penetrated market remains (~ 2% to date)" (FY17 Dose Sales Growth Guidance). The FY17 Dose Sales Guidance provided an implicit earnings guidance for Sirtex for FY17.
On 25 October 2016, at Sirtex's Annual General Meeting, the then CEO Mr Wong reiterated the FY17 Dose Sales Growth Guidance.
On 26 October 2016, the day following the AGM, Mr Wong sold 74,968 Sirtex shares for $2,135,378. The sale was disclosed to the market on 2 November 2016.
On 9 December 2016, following communications with the ASX in relation to its FY17 Dose Sales Growth Guidance, Sirtex advised the market (Corrective Disclosure):
As a result of lower than anticipated dose sales recorded in the Americas and EMEA regions [which include the EU], worldwide first half dose sales growth is anticipated to be in the order of 4-6% compared to growth in the prior corresponding period (pcp) of 15.7%...
Sirtex's share price fell 37% (or $9.49) on elevated volumes of shares traded on the day following the release of the Corrective Disclosure. By the end of the Relevant Period, Sirtex's share price had fallen by over 41%.
On 16 December 2016, Sirtex announced that its Board had appointed lawyers to investigate Mr Wong's share sale in October. Mr Wong voluntarily stood down during the investigation. Mr Wong's employment was terminated on 13 January 2017 following receipt of the lawyers' report.
How much will it cost to be part of this class action?
The class action is being run on a no win – no fee basis, with all costs fully underwritten by IMF and Maurice Blackburn. If you sign a funding agreement with IMF, you will not have to pay any fees unless the class action is won and the claims are successfully resolved. IMF will pay the other side's costs if the class action is unsuccessful and the claims are lost.
Registering your interest is free and without obligation.
You have the opportunity to obtain independent legal advice before you sign any document, and IMF encourages you to do so.
How do I register my interest?
The Court recently ordered the parties to send out a notice to all Sirtex shareholders who are likely to be included in this action (Notice).
The deadline for opt-out and formal registration under the Notice was 1 November 2018 (Class Deadline). However, if you took no steps, you are still a class member in the Sirtex Class Action and you are still able to register your interest in this matter. You should do so if you want to remain updated on the progress of this case.
There are now three options available to you:
- Complete a registration form to be a Late Registered Class Member; OR
- Return a Funding Agreement with IMF and Retainer and Costs Agreement with Maurice Blackburn Lawyers to be a Late Funded Class Member; OR
- Do nothing and remain a Class Member of the proceeding.
You are not required to undertake these steps. However, any information you provide could assist in the resolution of the matter. If you undertake these steps now, we propose to apply to the Court that any Late Registered or Late Funded Class Members be able to participate in any distribution from any settlement or judgement of the proceeding. Any settlement will be subject to Court approval.
It is important to note that the Court has made a Common Fund Order. The Funding Terms approved by the Court as part of the Common Fund Order, will override the terms of the IMF Funding Agreement to the extent of any inconsistency.
There are benefits which include receiving updates on the progress of the matter. Other benefits are outlined in the Sirtex Updated Answers to Questions document.
If you are interested in registering a claim, or to find out more about the class action you can do so by clicking on "register your interest" below or by contacting the IMF Client Liaison Team by email on
[email protected] or free call 1800 016 464.