ASX raises eyebrow at timing of Neurotech announcement
Health & Biotech
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The ASX has questioned autism headband maker Neurotech for its timing in releasing information to the market.
Neurotech (ASX:NTI) announced “outstanding preliminary results” to the market on September 27 — but the ASX noted the results had been discussed at a mental health conference several days prior.
There was no trading in Neurotech shares between the Friday evening delivery of the presentation by Professor Frederick Carrick and the ASX announcement on September 27, because Neurotech’s shares were suspended before market open on Monday, September 25.
The company’s share price more than doubled from 16.5c to 36.5c when trade resumed after the ASX announcement on September 27.
Neurotech says the information outlined at the conference did not contain new price sensitive material.
“The presentation comprised methodology, and technical and scientific information and was delivered in oral form only, with no written material made available to attendees of the Presentation,” the company wrote in their response to the ASX aware query.
“The information delivered at the presentation is not understood to contain new price sensitive material on its own.
“Professor Carrick provided, in writing, the two quoted paragraphs set out in the announcement, including the commentary from Dr Hankir, portions of which are paraphrased elsewhere in the announcement. These paragraphs were provided to Neurotech at 10.55pm (AEST) on Saturday, 23 September 2017. This is when Neurotech first became aware of the information.”
NTI blamed the time difference between the UK and Australia and further conversation with the professor as reasons for the delay.
“Neurotech’s Non-Executive Director, Dr Adrian Attard Trevisan, whose consultation regarding the content of the announcement was required, was located in the UK, which is in a significantly different time zone to Australia.
“And Neurotech was required to liaise further with Professor Carrick to ensure that the announcement as a whole accurately reflected the results of the clinical trial and was not misleading or deceptive in any respect.”
Neurotech shares were placed into a trading halt on September 25 and spiked to 36c after reopening on September 27 after promising findings in its study of autism treatment using its brain wave-measuring head band.
The preliminary results shared by the professor showed a positive response to the device, Mente Autism, in comparison to no active treatment.
The shares have since fallen back to 25c.