Accountants group Deloitte is embroiled in a new book-keeping scandal, this time in connection with the bankruptcy of Innoconcepts in 2010, the NRC says on Friday.
Curator Louis Deterink says Deloitte ‘wrongly’ approved two sets of annual accounts for the company which were worth €400m on the Amsterdam stock exchange in 2007.
Deterink, considered one of the Netherlands most expert bankruptcy specialists, says in his report that Innoconcepts went bankrupt due to its ‘vague’ and ‘conflict of interest-scented’ interests in China. The company’s alliance partners in China effectively emptied the company but Deloitte failed to take any action on this, the NRC says.
The 10 Chinese partner companies built up debts running into millions of euros with Innoconcepts but this was not included in the annual report. The partner firms also refused to hand over their annual reports and said this was considered normal in China, Deterink’s report says.
According to the Financieele Dagblad, there were also conflicts of interest involving both management and supervisory board members. Innoconcepts was set up to exploit inventions and support innovative R&D.
Deloitte said in a statement it was taking the report ‘extremely seriously’ and would look ‘critically at its own role’.
Deterink and Deloitte are in talks about a settlement and Deterink considers Deloitte liable for a ‘substantial part’ of the €63m inventory shortage.
Deloitte was also the main accountant for merchant bank Van der Hoop, which went bankrupt in 2005 and supermarket group Ahold at the time of the book-keeping fraud which came to light in 2003, the NRC says.
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