De La Rue PLC (LON:DLAR) saw its shares drop sharply on Tuesday after the banknote printer inserted a one-line profit warning into a statement announcing the resignation of its chief financial officer.
The FTSE Small Cap firm revealed that Jitesh Sodha, who had been its CFO for three years, has stepped down with immediate effect to "pursue his career outside of the Company", but said he will would remain with the firm until end of September to ensure an orderly transition.
Timing of profit warning 'interesting'
The firm then warned that, separately, it is currently expecting its full-year results to be ‘at the lower end of the current consensus range’. De La Rue said it expects to update the market on the outturn for the year in the third week of April.
In reaction, in late morning trading, De La Rues shares were down over 13% at 520p.
Mike van Dulken, head of research at Accendo Markets, commented: “Whilst the timing is interesting, just week’s ahead of April’s trading update and May’s FY results, even more intriguing is the lack of detail. In fact, had it not been for a key member of the C-Suite resigning, the profits warning – an addendum to the Directorate Change RNS announcement – could almost have been missed.”
He added: “Full year profits are now expected around “the lower end of the consensus range”, which means the lower boundary could yet be missed. This logically re-sets analyst expectations for this and the following the years and dents valuations.”