Poundland ex-owner offers investors $1bn to end fraud dispute
FORMER Poundland owner Steinhoff International Holdings has offered to pay investors $1bn (£780m) in order to end a long-running fraud scandal.
The proposed settlement aims to resolve more than $8bn of legal claims lodged against the retailer after an accounting scandal nearly wiped out the South African conglomerate in 2017.
Claimants would receive a combination of cash and shares in Pepkor Holdings, a clothing retailer controlled by Steinhoff, with most of the 90 outstanding claims included in the deal.
The proposal is the culmination of 12 months of “intensive effort”, the company said, and would mitigate the steep legal fees Steinhoff has incurred since accounting irregularities were uncovered. These included evidence that former executives inflated profits and assets by more than $6bn for several years.
Louis du Preez, chief executive, said in a statement: “Although there is no certainty yet that we will be able to conclude this settlement, in our view these terms are firmly in the best interests of all stakeholders.”