* Amazon locked in legal dispute with India's Future Retail (NS: FURE )
* Indian stock exchange questioned Future on market disclosures
* Amazon says Future's disclosures misled public
* Future has denied allegations levelled by Amazon
By Aditya Kalra and Abhirup Roy
NEW DELHI/MUMBAI, Nov 25 (Reuters) - India's National Stock Exchange (NSE) privately warned Future Retail FRTL.NS it risked regulatory action for not making timely market disclosures about efforts by Amazon.com to block a disputed asset sale, according to e-mails reviewed by Reuters.
Future Retail - one of country's top retailers - has been locked in a bitter dispute with Amazon AMZN.O over its $3.4 billion retail assets deal with Reliance Industries RELI.NS . Amazon is a business partner of Future and argues the Indian firm's asset sale breached some of their pre-existing agreements.
Amazon had complained to stock exchanges, accusing Future of misleading public by making incorrect market disclosures, allegations the Indian group denies.
The complaint came after Amazon on Oct. 25 won an injunction from an arbitrator to halt the Future-Reliance deal. unreported e-mails exchanged between the NSE and Future show the stock exchange repeatedly requested the company submit more details of the arbitration order, seeking details of possible impact on financials, lenders and the Reliance deal.
On Oct. 27, NSE asked Future why it had not disclosed the commencement of the arbitration proceedings and not shared the impact of the order. Future in response said it believed a disclosure wasn't required.
NSE's listing compliance division rejected that argument. It demanded a series of disclosures be made within hours, "failing which appropriate actions may be initiated", the emails showed.
Future Retail's Company Secretary, Virendra Samani, answered most of NSE's queries in a late night e-mail on Oct. 30, saying it was doing so "in the best interest of all stakeholders", the communications showed.
Many of those responses were made public on directions of the NSE two days later in a six-page exchange filing by Future.
Before that, Future had only submitted a disclosure on Oct. 26 in which it attached a media release saying it would ensure its deal with Reliance proceeded unhindered and that it was reviewing the arbitration order. NSE and Future Retail did not respond to requests for comment.
The legal dispute has now reached the Delhi High Court, where Future Retail has urged the court to stop Amazon from writing letters to regulators to block its Reliance deal, which is pending approvals from the market regulator and stock exchanges. The judge is expected to rule on the plea in the coming days.
Amazon had separately asked India's market regulator to investigate Future for insider trading, saying it disclosed to Reliance price sensitive details of the arbitration order before its exchange filing in late October. has said its communications with Reliance, which is led by Asia's richest man Mukesh Ambani, were for a "legitimate purpose". in e-mails at least twice asked Future Retail to provide a copy of the arbitration order to vet the disclosures, and also why it should not be disclosed as material price-sensitive information, emails between Oct. 27 and Oct. 30 showed.
Future's Samani at first declined the request, stating in an e-mail that the order was "confidential in nature" and sharing further information could be "deterimental" to the company. A copy was provided following NSE's warning.
Add Chart to Comment
We encourage you to use comments to engage with users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:
- Enrich the conversation
- Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed.
- Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically.
- Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases.
- NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and links within a comment will be removed
- Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user.
- Don’t Monopolize the Conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also believe strongly in giving everyone a chance to air their thoughts. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
- Only English comments will be allowed.
Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.