By Kate Brown
Steve Denison, the senior accountant at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), who audited BHS’s accounts is to be fined a 6 digit figure and face a 15 year ban. After agreeing to cooperate the fine has been reduced to £325,000 from £500,000. Mr Denison audited BHS’s accounts ahead of its £1 sale just a year before the department store chain collapsed.
PwC said: “We recognise and accept that there were serious shortcomings with this audit work and that it is important to learn the necessary lessons. We are sorry that our work fell well below the professional standards expected of us and that we demand of ourselves.”
PwC is also facing a record fine separately of £6.5 million. Originally set at £10 million, it was reduced after the accountancy giant agreed to settle. The Big Four firm said: “We have agreed this settlement, recognising that it is important to learn the necessary lessons. At its core this is not a failure in our audit methodology, the methodology simply was not followed. As a result of our internal reviews we took swift action to enhance our monitoring procedures. We have agreed with the FRC to extend these further for an additional period.”
The news comes after an announcement earlier this week that accountancy firm KPMG was fined more than £3 million by the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) for misconduct relating to the scandal-hit insurance software firm Quindell (Watchstone).