Mumbai: Shares of Jubilant FoodWorks Ltd fell as much as 8.13% on Tuesday after the company said its chief executive officer and whole-time director Ajay Kaul resigned.

The stock touched a low of 923.50 a share, a level last seen on 12 February. The stock fell in 14 out of the last 17 trading sessions and has lost 25.06% in this period. The stock has fallen 37.3% so far this year.

At 10.19am, Jubilant FoodWorks fell 6.5% to 940.10, while the benchmark Sensex index fell 0.24% to 28,565.53 points.

“Mr Ajay Kaul has decided to step down as the CEO & whole-time director of the company to evaluate and pursue opportunities outside the Jubilant Bhartia group. Mr Kaul will continue in his current role till March 2017," the company said in a notice to the BSE.

The company said it has initiated the process of identifying his successor.

“Key exits in the management, apart from the weak earnings reported by the company have added to the uncertainty of the business," said a senior analyst with a domestic brokerage, requesting anonymity.

In the June quarter, the company posted a net profit of 19 crore, down 31.16% from 27.60 crore a year ago. Total income rose 6.7% to 612 crore.

The company reported a 3.2% decline in same-store sales, earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (Ebitda) declined 14% year-on-year to 57.6 crore. Gross margins expanded 28 basis points quarter-on-quarter to 76.8% but growth in expenses was ahead of revenue growth. Ebitda margins of 9.5% were down to their lowest level since its initial public offer.

Broking firm ICICI Securities in a 6 September note has cut same-store sales growth estimates for FY17 to nil from 6%. The broking firm has downgraded the stock to sell from add and reduced its target price to 895 a share from 1,068 a share.

Of the analysts covering the stock, 11 have a “buy" rating, 12 have a “hold" rating, while nine have a “sell" rating, shows Bloomberg data.

The promoters of HT Media Ltd, which publishes Mint, and Jubilant FoodWorks are closely related. There are, however, no promoter cross-holdings.

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