NEW YORK, Aug. 29, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Pomerantz LLP announces that a class action lawsuit has been filed against Airbus SE (“Airbus” or the “Company”)(OTCMKTS: EADSY; EADSF) and certain of its officers. The class action, filed in United States District Court for the District of New Jersey, and indexed under 20-cv-10084, is on behalf of a class consisting of all persons and entities other than Defendants who purchased or otherwise, acquired Airbus securities in the U.S. between February 24, 2016, and July 30, 2020, both dates inclusive (the “Class Period”), seeking to recover damages caused by Defendants’ violations of the federal securities laws and to pursue remedies under Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the “Exchange Act”) and Rule 10b-5 promulgated thereunder, against the Company and certain of its top officials.
If you are a shareholder who purchased Airbus securities during the class period, you have until October 5, 2020 to ask the Court to appoint you as Lead Plaintiff for the class. A copy of the Complaint can be obtained at www.pomerantzlaw.com. To discuss this action, contact Robert S. Willoughby at [email protected] or 888.476.6529 (or 888.4-POMLAW), toll-free, Ext. 7980. Those who inquire by e-mail are encouraged to include their mailing address, telephone number, and the number of shares purchased.
Airbus was founded in 2000 and is based in Leiden, the Netherlands. The Company is a multinational aerospace corporation, operating through its Commercial Aircraft, Defense and Space, and Helicopters divisions. The Company’s American Depository Receipts (“ADRs”) trade in the U.S. on the over-the-counter market (the “OTC”) under the ticker symbol “EADSY,” and the Company’s foreign ordinary shares (“foreign ordinaries”) trade in the U.S. on the OTC under the ticker symbol “EADSF.”
In August 2012, the United Kingdom (“U.K.”) Serious Fraud Office (“SFO”) announced that it had opened a formal criminal investigation into one of Airbus’s subsidiaries, GPT Special Project Management Ltd. (“GPT”), which Airbus acquired in 2007. The allegations called into question a service contract entered into by GPT prior to its acquisition by Airbus, relating to activities conducted by GPT in Saudi Arabia.
Unbeknownst to investors and the public, however, Airbus was at an increased and foreseeable risk of facing significant potential liabilities for other alleged illegal activities that would later be investigated by governmental authorities around the world. These activities, combined with the investigation into GPT, implicated all three of Airbus’s divisions, calling into question the sustainability of the Company’s reported earnings during the Class Period.
The complaint alleges that throughout the Class Period, Defendants made materially false and misleading statements regarding the Company’s business, operational, and compliance policies. Specifically, Defendants made false and/or misleading statements and/or failed to disclose: (i) that Airbus’s policies and protocols were insufficient to ensure the Company’s compliance with relevant anti-corruption laws and regulations; (ii) that, consequently, Airbus engaged in bribery, corruption, and fraud in order to enhance its business with respect to its commercial aircraft, helicopter, and defense deals; (iii) that, as a result, Airbus’s earnings were derived in part from unlawful conduct and therefore unsustainable; (iv) the full scope and severity of Airbus’s misconduct; (v) that resolution of government investigations of Airbus would foreseeably cost Airbus billions of dollars in settlements and legal fees and subject the Company to significant continuing government investigation and oversight; and (vi) that, as a result, the Company’s public statements were materially false and misleading at all relevant times.
On August 8, 2016, Reuters reported that the U.K. had opened a corruption probe into Airbus. Specifically, the SFO announced that it had “opened a criminal investigation into allegations of fraud, bribery, and corruption in the civil aviation business of Airbus,” which “relate to irregularities concerning third party consultants.” The investigation followed Airbus’s flagging of “misstatements and omissions” involving outside contractors in certain export financing applications to U.K. regulators and the European Export Credit Agencies earlier in the year, which the Company had found through an internal probe.
On this news, Airbus ADRs fell $0.21 per share, or 1.49%, to close at $13.86 per share on August 8, 2016, and Airbus foreign ordinaries fell $0.82 per share, or 1.45%, to close at $55.58 per share on August 8, 2016.
France and the U.S. later opened their investigations into the subject of the SFO’s allegations in 2017 and 2018, respectively. On January 31, 2020, media outlets reported that Airbus had agreed to a deal with U.S., U.K., and French prosecutors to settle bribery and export-control violations against the Company for €3.6 billion ($4 billion). Pursuant to the settlement, Airbus also agreed to appoint an external compliance officer for at least two years to monitor the Company’s handling of its defense-related sales and disclosures.
On this news, Airbus ADRs fell $0.72 per share, or 1.93%, to close at $36.68 per share on January 31, 2020, and Airbus foreign ordinaries fell $2.21 per share, or 1.48%, to close at $147.00 per share on January 31, 2020.
Then, on March 15, 2020, the Wall Street Journal reported that Airbus executives had previously raised red flags about fees paid to a number of middlemen working with its helicopter division, led at the time by the Company’s current Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”), Defendant Guillaume M.J.D. Faury (“Faury”), that may have violated global bribery and corruption rules, according to internal documents related to Airbus’s $4 billion bribery settlement, which were not previously made public and/or reported.
On this news, Airbus ADRs fell $3.44 per share, or 15.71%, to close at $18.46 per share on March 16, 2020, and Airbus foreign ordinaries fell $7.97 per share, or 9.3%, to close at $77.75 per share on March 16, 2020.
Finally, on July 30, 2020, the Wall Street Journal reported that the SFO had charged GPT and three individuals with corruption in connection with a defense contract the U.K. had arranged with Saudi Arabia. These charges were the culmination of the investigations initiated by the SFO back in August 2012.
On this news, Airbus ADRs fell $0.67 per share, or 3.56%, to close at $18.13 per share on July 31, 2020, and Airbus foreign ordinaries fell $2.85 per share, or 3.8%, to close at $72.10 per share on July 31, 2020.
The Pomerantz Firm, with offices in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Paris, is acknowledged as one of the premier firms in the areas of corporate, securities, and antitrust class litigation. Founded by the late Abraham L. Pomerantz, known as the dean of the class action bar, the Pomerantz Firm pioneered the field of securities class actions. Today, more than 80 years later, the Pomerantz Firm continues in the tradition he established, fighting for the rights of the victims of securities fraud, breaches of fiduciary duty, and corporate misconduct. The Firm has recovered numerous multimillion-dollar damages awards on behalf of class members. See www.pomerantzlaw.com
Robert S. Willoughby