BERKELEY, Calif., Feb. 29, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Hagens Berman today announced it is investigating Metabolix, Inc. (NASDAQ: MBLX) ("MBLX") regarding alleged violations of securities laws and asked investors desiring to be a lead plaintiff and insiders with information relevant to the investigation at Archer-Daniels-Midland (NYSE: ADM) ("ADM") or MBLX to contact the firm for a consultation.
MBLX produces plastics and other materials, with the goal of creating products that are environmentally sustainable compared to traditional petroleum-based plastics. The company partnered with ADM to produce PHA plastics under the brand name Mirel. MBLX announced on Jan. 12, 2012, that ADM had given notice it would be ending the partnership.
"ADM's decision to end the joint partnership with MBLX came as a shock to investors," said Hagens Berman Partner Reed R. Kathrein, who is leading the firm's investigation. "We hope to speak with insiders who have more information about communications between ADM and MBLX about the projected financial return of the joint venture, its certainty, or adequacy."
A class-action lawsuit has been filed in the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts. The complaint claims that MBLX misled investors regarding the company's financial performance. Specifically, it alleges that MBLX knew that Mirel was not commercially viable, but failed to disclose this to investors.Following MBLX's announcement that ADM was ending the partnership, MBLX shares dropped more than 50 percent to $2.54. Hagens Berman is investigating whether MBLX management had warning about ADM's decision or knew that Mirel was not commercially viable. Persons with knowledge that may help the investigation are encouraged to contact the firm. The SEC recently finalized new rules as part of its implementation of the whistleblower provisions in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Bill. The new rules protect whistleblowers from employer retaliation and allow the SEC to reward those who provide information leading to a successful enforcement with up to 30 percent of the recovery.