Price Waterhouse today said there has been no intentional wrongdoing by its firms in the Satyam case and expressed confidence of getting a stay on the SEBI order. The audit major also said it has learnt the lessons from Satyam case and invested heavily over the last nine years in building a robust and high quality audit practice.
Finding Price Waterhouse guilty in the multi-crore Satyam scam, SEBI has barred its network entities from issuing audit certificates to any listed company in India for two years. Besides, the watchdog has ordered disgorgement of over Rs 13 crore wrongful gains by the audit major and its two erstwhile partners who worked on the IT major’s accounts.
“As we have said since 2009, there has been no intentional wrongdoing by PW firms in the unprecedented management perpetrated fraud at Satyam, nor have we seen any material evidence to the contrary. We believe that the order is also not in line with the directions of the Bombay High Court order of 2010 and so we are confident of getting a stay,” Price Waterhouse said in a statement.
While noting that the SEBI order relates to a fraud that took place nearly a decade ago in which it played no part and had no knowledge of, Price Waterhouse said, “We are disappointed with the findings of the SEBI investigations and the adjudication order.”
The scam came to light in January 2009 after Satyam Computer’s then chairman B Ramalinga Raju admitted to large scale financial manipulations in the company’s books of accounts. “We have however learnt the lessons of Satyam and invested heavily over the last nine years in building a robust and high quality audit practice, as also confirmed in 2015 by an independent monitor appointed by the US SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) and PCAOB (Public Company Accounting Oversight Board),” the statement said. Shares of Satyam were also listed in the US.