Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing has publicly censured Benefun International Holdings and its four executive directors for a misleading announcement about a share placement in June last year. The listing committee held a disciplinary hearing on April 18 to investigate the conduct of the company and executive directors Tan Sim Chew, Chen Miao Zhu, Lawrence Lo King-fat and Fu Zi Cong, it said. The stock exchange said Benefun had agreed to a share placement in which the share subscribers and subscription prices had been determined on or before June 10 last year. However, in two announcements authorised by the executive directors - one on June 17 and another on June 21 - the company and the directors denied being aware of any matter that could explain the fluctuation in the company's share prices and turnover. The stock exchange considered the announcements misleading and ruled the company had breached a listing rule. The stock exchange was also extremely dissatisfied with the conduct of director Lawrence Lo. It was deemed Mr Lo had issued the announcements for and on behalf of all directors of the company without prior consultation with the independent non-executive directors. The four directors were also considered to have failed to disclose the share placement arranged on or before June 10, thus again breaching listing rules.