Asensio & Company, Inc. issued an institutional research report and initiated coverage of Crystallex International Corporation’s (AMEX Symbol: KRY) (Price: $8.1875) common stock with a Strong Sell and Short Sell recommendation.
Investors have been buying shares of Crystallex International Corporation believing that a court decision pending in Venezuela can result in Crystallex obtaining an ownership interest or claim on Venezuela’s Las Cristinas gold concessions. This is completely false and untrue. Crystallex does not and has never had any direct or indirect ownership interest in Las Cristinas. There does not exist any legal proceeding or pending decision in any court that can result in Crystallex having an interest in Las Cristinas. There has never been a ruling by any court or other authority that can be remotely interpreted as placing in question the title to the Las Cristinas’ gold concessions. Crystallex lacks any factual basis or legal standing to state it is presently pursuing such a claim. Information to the contrary is necessarily false and misleading. We believe that Crystallex has purposely disseminated such false and misleading information in order to defraud investors. We believe Crystallex’s recent stock rise, and its rise last year, are based on the belief that it is on the verge of attaining an interest in Las Cristinas. There is no truth to this belief. As a result, we believe the shares will soon trade below US$1.00.
Crystallex has approximately 34 million shares and 6.9 million options and warrants outstanding. The options and warrants are exercisable at an average price of US$2.40 per share. At yesterday’s closing bid price, Crystallex had a fully diluted market value of over US$300 million. Crystallex’s operations are insignificant and uneconomical. In the latest nine-month period, sales of US$2.2 million and an operating loss of US$0.95 million were reported before administrative expenses of US$3.3 million. Administrative expenses include over US$1.9 million in salaries, consulting, travel, professional fees and investor relations expenses. The Company’s only source of funds is a combination of stock promotion and options exercise. During 1996 and the nine month period ending September 30, 1997 Crystallex sold over 7.7 million shares primarily through the exercise of below market insider options for an average of US$1.99 per share. In addition, on February 20, 1998 Crystallex announced it issued an additional 3 million shares through a note converted at US$3.31 per share. None of these shares were sold in a legitimate public underwriting. They were sold at a profit by insiders benefiting from Crystallex’s false Las Cristinas pronouncements.
Short selling involves a risk not associated with the purchase of stock including, but not only limited to, unlimited loss and stock borrowing risks.