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JSE seeks more information about Steinhoff International probe

Steinhoff lost more than 63% of its share value on Wednesday with German prosecutors wanting to interview at least four officials after the resignation of CEO Markus Jooste.

Former Steinhoff CEO Markus Jooste. Picture: Gallo Images/Financial Mail/Jeremy Glyn

JOHANNESBURG - The Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) is now trying to obtain more information after nearly R183 billion of market value was wiped off the local market, due to allegations of financial irregularities at furniture retailer Steinhoff International.

Steinhoff lost more than 63% of its share value on Wednesday, with German prosecutors wanting to interview at least four officials after the resignation of CEO Markus Jooste.

Billionaire Christo Wiese will now manage the company in an executive capacity on an interim basis.

Reports say that investigators are trying to determine whether Steinhoff and its subsidiaries may have overstated their assets.

The scandal has raised renewed questions about corruption and other criminal behaviour in the private sector.

The JSE says it has been holding talks with Steinhoff to find out the exact details of the investigation in Germany.

The company is listed there and locally.

The JSE’s John Burke say the latest information on Steinhoff is very concerning.

“It relates to irregularities, so obviously this thing is going to grow legs. We’re going to have to look carefully at what comes from this investigation.”

German prosecutors say they can't give a timeframe for their investigation.

However, the JSE has promised to inform shareholders on any new information as it tries to find out exactly who has been implicated.

LISTEN: Steinhoff share price fell 70%. Why was trade not suspended?

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)

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