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Court greenlights class action lawsuit against Bombardier



A Quebec judge is authorizing a class action from shareholders against Bombardier Inc. over claims that the plane maker presented a false picture of its financial situation in 2018, a turbulent year that saw its share price tank. 

The lawsuit alleges that Bombardier, then-CEO Alain Bellemare and then-chief financial officer John Di Bert failed to make timely disclosures of key facts around the company’s financial forecast.

Filed in Quebec Superior Court by shareholder Denis Gauthier in 2019, the class action concerns investors who bought company stock between Aug. 2 and Nov. 8, 2018.

In the months leading up to Nov. 8, the Montreal-based company said it was on track to achieve financial goals linked to its restructuring.

But in its third-quarter results in November 2018, Bombardier announced it would cut 5,000 jobs and sell off two units, and reported free cash flow that sat “well below” expectations of breaking even without falling back on proceeds from a recent factory sale, according to one analyst at the time.

Stock at Bombardier tumbled 23 per cent on that November day in 2018.

Bombardier, which has since reinvented itself as a pure-play business jet manufacturer, says it may appeal the authorization by the court, which has not yet heard or ruled on the allegations.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 27, 2024.

Companies in this story: (TSX:BBD.B)

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