Cafe Coffee Day shares have lost ₹800 crore in value after founder VG Siddhartha goes missing

V.G. Siddhartha, chairman of Coffee Day Enterprises Ltd, speaks during a news conference in Mumbai, October 7, 2015. REUTERS/Shailesh Andrade/Files
  • Shares of Cafe Coffee Day running 20% down, to trade at ₹154.05 ever since VG Siddhartha, the founder, and CEO went missing.
  • The value of all outstanding shares is down by nearly ₹800 crore.
  • The company’s total debt at the end of March 2019 was ₹6,547 crore.
Shares of Cafe Coffee Day running 20% down, to trade at ₹154.05 ever since VG Siddhartha, the founder, and CEO of the company went missing. The value of all outstanding shares is down by nearly ₹800 crore. The company's market capitalisation was less than half of the total debt of ₹6,547 crore at the end of March 2019.

"This is to inform you that, Mr. V G Siddhartha, Chairman and Managing Director of Coffee Day Enterprises Limited is not reachable since yesterday evening, " read a statement on BSE. The company further assured that they are taking the help of the concerned authorities to find the Siddhartha. CCD also said the company would continue to run by the leadership team.

The Mangaluru Police suspect that the coffee baron may have jumped off the Ullal bridge on Monday night. The news agency, ANI, also posted the last letter allegedly written by VG Siddhartha addressing his employees.

See also: Full text of the letter written by Cafe Coffee Day founder VG Siddhartha before he went missing

Mangaluru City Police started a search operation at 9 pm to look for a man who might have jumped off a kilometer-long bridge in Ullal. According to the report, Siddhartha may be the missing 'man' since he reached Mangaluru at 8 pm in his SUV and ask the driver to drop him at the bridge in Ullal.

VG Siddhartha came from a coffee-growing family, which owned 15,000 acres of coffee estate in Chikmagalur in Karnataka. He launched the first Cafe Coffee Day (CCD) outlet on Brigade Road in Bengaluru. The chain currently has 1,750 outlets and over 60,000 vending machines spread over Nepal, Malaysia, Czech Republic, and Egypt, aside from 245 cities in India.

The 58-year-old entrepreneur was in talks with Coca-Cola to sell considerable stake in his coffee chain. The deal was supposed to be closed by the end of March 2020.

The coffee baron had reportedly been cornered by a cash crunch after the default by infrastructure lending giant IL&FS triggered a liquidity crisis in the country. Siddhartha had to sell his 20.4% stake in the IT firm Mindtree to L&T against the wishes of Mindtree’s founders who Siddhartha had backed since 1999.

(Correction: The market cap loss wrongly pegged at ₹8000 crore earlier has been corrected to ₹800 crore)

See also:
Coffee baron VG Siddhartha, the founder of India's iconic chain Cafe Coffee Day, is missing
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