PwC probe into Stein­hoff scan­dal to be fi­nalised

Swazi Observer - - BUSINESS -

JO­HAN­NES­BURG – In­ter­na­tional re­tail hold­ing com­pany Stein­hoff said yes­ter­day a foren­sic in­ves­ti­ga­tion be­ing un­der­taken by au­dit firm PwC after an ac­count­ing scan­dal last year was sub­stan­tially com­plete, but more time was needed to fi­nalise some is­sues.

Stein­hoff is still grap­pling with the fall­out after ad­mit­ting to ac­count­ing ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties a year ago, which saw its former chief ex­ec­u­tive Markus Jooste step down in dis­grace.

In ad­di­tion to the foren­sic probe, the com­pany has si­mul­ta­ne­ously been in­volved in a fi­nan­cial re­struc­tur­ing process in­volv­ing a di­verse group of fi­nan­cial cred­i­tors while con­tin­u­ing to keep global op­er­a­tions run­ning across more than 30 coun­tries.

"The foren­sic in­ves­ti­ga­tion be­ing un­der­taken by PwC has pro­gressed well. The in­ves­tiga­tive process has been sig­nif­i­cantly more com­plex than ini­tially an­tic­i­pated, with mul­ti­ple work streams op­er­at­ing across a num­ber of ju­ris­dic­tions," it said on Thurs­day.

"The in­ves­ti­ga­tion is sub­stan­tially com­plete but more time is re­quired to fi­nalise a num­ber of fol­low up work streams. The in­ves­ti­ga­tion is now ex­pected to be com­plete by the end of Fe­bru­ary 2019, with the fi­nal re­port be­ing avail­able to the com­pany shortly there­after."

It said the full im­pli­ca­tions of the ac­cu­mu­lated find­ings of the PwC re­port on the group’s 2017 and 2018 fi­nan­cial state­ments were still be­ing an­a­lysed to en­sure that the cor­rect ac­count­ing treat­ment and re­lated dis­clo­sures were adopted.

"Un­for­tu­nately, de­spite sig­nif­i­cant ef­forts be­ing ex­erted by all par­ties, it is now clear that the time­line for com­plet­ing the group con­sol­i­dated fi­nan­cial re­port­ing and au­dit process has shifted and it will not be pos­si­ble for all the work re­quired to be fi­nalised within the orig­i­nal time­frame," it said. ANA

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