The body of India’s missing ‘coffee king’ has been found

source
Reuters

  • The body of India’s missing ‘coffee king’ was found by a fisherman on Wednesday morning.
  • V.G. Siddhartha, the creator of India’s largest coffee chain, told his driver he was going for a walk on Monday night but didn’t return.
  • The Coffee Day founder appeared to be under pressure from partners, lenders, and tax officials.
  • Watch Coffee Day trade live.

The body of India’s missing ‘coffee king’ was found by a fisherman on Wednesday morning.

V.G. Siddhartha, the founder of India’s largest coffee chain, Coffee Day, told his driver he was going for a walk on Monday night but didn’t return. Coffee Day’s board released a letter apparently penned by Siddhartha, in which he described mounting pressure from lenders, tax officials, and a private-equity partner. Some have questioned its authenticity.

Siddhartha complained of a “serious liquidity crunch” in the letter. “I have failed to create the right profitable business model despite my best efforts,” he wrote. “I gave it my all but today I gave up as I could not take any more pressure.”

Shares in Coffee Day plunged another 20% on Wednesday, after slumping 20% on Tuesday. The company’s future is now in doubt, given Siddhartha, his wife, and companies tied to them controlled about 53% of Coffee Day’s equity, according to the Financial Times.

About 41% of Coffee Day’s equity has been pledged as collateral to various lenders, the FT said. The company’s debt surged 29% to 65.5 billion rupees ($950 million) in the year to March, Bloomberg said.