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Deloitte to resign as Lookers auditors

Deloitte is reportedly set to resign from its position as auditor for the car dealership Lookers. 

In its latest trading update, the dealership confirmed Deloitte’s intention to resign, and said it is now in the process of contacting several audit firms in a bid to replace Deloitte. 

While the process is still said to be in an early stage, an insider told Sky News that it was “likely to be concluded” following the company’s 2019 audit opinion and approval of its full-year results.

It comes as the dealership, which last week announced it was axing 1,500 jobs, is now expected to suspend its shares following news that the publication of its annual accounts may be delayed. 

Last week, Lookers announced that its audited financial statements for the year ended 31 December 2019 were expected to be published by 30 June 2020, subject to the conclusion of banking discussions and the completion of its audit process.  

In addition, Lookers announced that a Grant Thornton investigation into its accounts was “nearing its completion”, and that a draft of the Grant Thornton report had been shared with Deloitte for review in the context of their audit opinion.

Following discussions with Deloitte regarding the report, however, the dealership confirmed that it would no longer be possible to publish its results by 30 June, in light of “additional procedures” that Deloitte must now perform to finalise the results. 

After a consultation with the FCA, Lookers confirmed that its shares will be temporarily suspended next month, due to the delay in the publication of results. 

In a statement, Lookers said: “The board and the company’s finance team is working closely with Deloitte and is developing an action plan to ensure that the additional work required to allow publication of the 2019 results is completed as soon as possible.

“Deloitte has indicated to the company that it intends to resign as auditor following the publication of the 2019 Results. The company is currently engaged in a competitive tender process to appoint a new auditor.”

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