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KPMG CEO apologises over ‘misleading’ Carillion audit

The disciplinary tribunal which started on Monday 10 January 2022 and is expected to carry on into the upcoming weeks, was first announced by the council on 1 September 2021

KPMG chief executive Jon Holt has expressed regret over the firm’s “misleading” audit of Carillion and its subsequent investigation by the Financial Reporting Council (FRC).

The disciplinary tribunal which started on Monday 10 January 2022 and is expected to carry on into the upcoming weeks, was first announced by the council on 1 September 2021.

The case alleges “misconduct” against KPMG and several individual respondents regarding the provision of “false and misleading” information of two audits carried out for the period ended 31 December 2016.

It also alleges “misconduct” in relation to the audit of the financial statements of Regenersis for the period ended 30 June 2014.

Construction company Carillion, which collapsed in 2018, took almost 3,000 jobs down with it.

Holt stated that the misconduct was a “violation” of the firm’s processes and “clearly against” its values. “It is unacceptable, we do not tolerate or condone it in any way, and I am very sorry that it occurred in our firm,” he commented.

In a statement released on the first day of the tribunal he said: “I very much regret that individuals involved in this case failed to act properly or to call out the inappropriate behaviour of others, and I am saddened that some relatively junior former members of staff are facing very serious regulatory sanction at an early point in their careers.

“We will assist the tribunal in any way we can, as we have cooperated fully with the investigation into these matters. At the same time, nothing should detract from the frustration that I and my colleagues feel about what has occurred, or our determination to ensure that such misconduct will never be repeated at KPMG.”

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