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Diamond Foods To Miss Financial Filing Deadline

Mon, 06/11/2012 - 10:09am

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Diamond Foods shares fell more than 7 percent Monday after the snack maker said it won't report on its three most recent fiscal quarters by the Monday deadline set by Nasdaq, and it expects to Nasdaq to start delisting its stock as a result.

The San Francisco company, whose brands include Emerald Nuts and Pop Secret popcorn, said reports covering its first, second and third quarters were due Monday. It's also in the process of restating its fiscal 2010 and 2011 earnings.

Diamond said it plans to appeal any action Nasdaq takes to start delisting the company, and it plans to seek an extension of Nasdaq's requirement that it hold its annual meeting before the end of July.

Diamond has faced a number of challenges. Its audit committee announced in February that payments to walnut growers were booked in the wrong period. The payments — an estimated $20 million in 2010 and $60 million in 2011 — skewed the company's financial results.

The accounting problems led to the collapse of its proposed buyout of the Pringles brand from Procter & Gamble Co. Instead, Kellogg Co. wound up buying Pringles and closed on the $2.7 billion acquisition last month.

Food and beverage industry veteran Brian Driscoll took over as president and CEO in May, replacing Rick Wolford. Wolford, a board member, had filled in at the helm since Diamond put then-CEO Michael Mendes and then-Chief Financial Officer Steven Neil on administrative leave over their roles in the walnut payment controversy.

Diamond said it plans to hold its annual meeting as soon as possible once it files its quarterly reports and restated financials for fiscal 2010 and fiscal 2011.

Shares of Diamond Foods Inc. dropped $1.46, or 7.4 percent, to $18.70 by midday.

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