VermeulenLaw Mobile Logo

Website Location : Home » Blog » Does a Shareholder Have a Right to Audited Financial Statements? Insights from Moodley v Crazy Plastics Holdings

Call us: Mon – Fri 8:00am – 4:30pm

Does a Shareholder Have a Right to Audited Financial Statements? Insights from Moodley v Crazy Plastics Holdings


In the recent case of Moodley v Crazy Plastics Holdings (Pty) Ltd and Another (23/39002) [2024] ZAGPJHC 7 (5 January 2024), the Gauteng Local Division of the High Court delved into the complexities surrounding a shareholder’s right to access audited financial statements. This case offers valuable insights into how the Companies Act of 2008, specifically sections 26 and 163, is interpreted and applied in disputes regarding shareholder rights and corporate transparency.


Navasen Moodley, the applicant and a former shareholder in Crazy Plastics Holdings’ subsidiary, Blacktip Reef Shark Investments, sought access to audited financial statements to ascertain the true value of his shares. Moodley’s relationship with the company’s director deteriorated, leading to his resignation and subsequent removal as a director, sparking this legal battle over share valuation and the right to financial transparency.

Court’s Reasoning:

Justice Yacoob, in his judgment, emphasized the significance of section 26 of the Companies Act, which allows shareholders to inspect and copy financial statements (paras 23-27). The Court held that even though the Act does not obligate a private company to audit its statements, a shareholder like Moodley is entitled to documents enabling the procurement of such audited statements. This right is particularly pertinent when existing statements are unsatisfactory for share valuation purposes (para 30).

Key Quote:

“The conduct of the respondents’ legal representative… is not appropriate… consistent with the manner in which this matter has been handled, which is to avoid dealing with the substance of Mr Moodley’s complaints, and to take a highly technical approach to his requests.” (para 13)

Conclusion and Order:

The Court ordered the second respondent to provide independently reviewed financial statements for specific financial years and to share the cost of producing audited financial statements if they were not already available (paras 34a-b). This ruling underscores the Court’s commitment to ensuring fairness and transparency in shareholder-company relations.


  1. What rights do shareholders have regarding financial statements?
    • Shareholders are entitled to inspect and copy a company’s financial statements as per the Companies Act. This includes access to documents necessary for auditing these statements if they are unsatisfactory for valuation purposes.
  2. Can a private company be compelled to audit its financial statements?
    • While the Act doesn’t always require private companies to audit their financial statements, a court can order such an audit to ensure fair share valuation for minority shareholders.
  3. What constitutes unfair treatment of a shareholder?
    • Obstructive behavior, lack of transparency, and avoidance in addressing legitimate shareholder requests can be deemed unfair treatment, as evidenced in this case.


- Contact Us -