Lookers PLC (LON:LOOK) shares plunged in early trade on Wednesday after the company revealed late on Tuesday that it has identified “potentially fraudulent transactions” in one of its operating divisions.
In a brief statement, released after the market close, the motor dealership group said: “Whilst the initial findings are not material in the context of the Group, the Board is appointing an external adviser to lead a full investigation into the matter.”
The firm, which was scheduled to release results for the financial year ended 31 December 2019 on Wednesday, said it has decided to postpone the announcement until the second half of April.
In opening deals. Lookers shares dropped 22% to 28.75p.
Back in November last year, Lookers announced that both Andy Bruce, its chief executive officer and Nigel McMinn, its chief operating officer had stepped down from the group’s board as it issued another profit warning.
The company revealed that the downbeat outlook statement given in its interim results had not been pessimistic enough and that trading conditions had worsened more than expected.
The group said it expected full-year underlying profit before tax will be in the region of £20mln, having previously guided the market to expect a profit of around £32mln, down from £43mln a year ago.