Cafe Coffee Day shares slump after founder VG Siddhartha goes missing

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Updated: July 30, 2019 12:06:30 PM

Shares of Coffee Day Enterprises Ltd., the Indian rival of Starbucks Corp., tanked the most on record after its tycoon founder went missing on Monday evening.

Siddhartha has started Cafe Coffee Day's first outlet on Bangalore's Brigade Road in 1996 (PTI File photo)VG Siddhartha (PTI File photo)

Shares of Coffee Day Enterprises Ltd., the Indian rival of Starbucks Corp., tanked the most on record after its tycoon founder went missing on Monday evening. V. G. Siddhartha asked his driver to stop his car, before going for a walk near the Southern Indian city of Mangaluru, local police official Jayant Kumar said by phone. The driver informed police when Siddhartha didn’t return after an hour, Kumar said.

Coffee Day Enterprises slumped as much as 20% to 153.40 rupees, their lowest level on record. The broader S&P BSE Sensex index was up 0.4%.

Coffee Day Enterprises, in which Siddhartha holds 32.75% stake as per data compiled by Bloomberg, is a holding company for several businesses, the most prominent of which is Cafe Coffee Day, with more than 1,500 cafes across the country. Siddhartha was seeking a valuation of as much as $1.45 billion from Coca-Cola Co. for a stake sale in the coffee chain he set up, The Economic Times reported last month.

A representative for Coffee Day, which also exports coffee, didn’t immediately respond to a call and an email seeking comments.

Coffee Day, which went public in 2015, almost two decades after opening its first cafe in Bengaluru, is now present in more than 200 cities. The company, founded in 1993, opened the first international cafe in Vienna in 2005, according to its website.

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