Markets regulator Sebi today imposed a fine of Rs 12 lakh on merchant banker Atherstone Capital Markets for mis-statement and non-disclosures of material developments in the IPO papers of Onelife Capital Advisors.
The regulator, through an interim order in December 2011, has barred Atherstone from taking up any new assignment as merchant banker till further directions. These directions were confirmed by Sebi in January 2013 and continued to be in force till July 2016.
"For the purpose of imposing penalty, I have considered the prohibition already undergone by noticee (Atherstone) for period of four-and-a-half years as a mitigating factor," Sebi Adjudicating Officer B J Dilip said in an order passed today.
Onelife Capital Advisors came out with its initial public offer (IPO) in September 2011 to raise Rs 36.85 crore.
According to the regulator, there were non-disclosures or mis-statements in the red herring prospectus (RHP) filed by Atherstone.
"I also conclude that there were certain material developments that took place subsequent to the filing of RHP which were neither updated in the prospectus nor informed to the investors through advertisements," he noted.
The regulator said that Atherstone as a Sebi- registered intermediary failed to conduct its duties as merchant banker which resulted mis-statement and non-disclosures in the prospectus relating to main objects of IPO.
"Such gross failure on the part of noticee affects the trust and confidence of investors on Sebi registered intermediary and therefore the conduct of noticee cannot be viewed leniently. I consider it a fit case for imposition of penalty that meets the ends of justice,"the adjudicating officer noted.
Accordingly, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) has levied a fine of Rs 12 lakh on Artherstone for violating ICDR (Issue of Capital & Disclosure) regulations as well as code of conduct for merchant bankers.
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