11 Feb 2013 11:57am

FRC to investigate Autonomy's accounts

The Financial Reporting Council has launched an investigation into the financial reporting of Autonomy

The FRC is to investigate reports for the period between 1 January 2009 and 30 June 2011.

UK software company Autonomy became the centre of an international accounting scandal in November, when the world’s biggest PC maker Hewlett Packard accused the former management of “accounting improprieties.”

HP said Autonomy appeared to have "inflated" the value of the company prior to the takeover as part of a "wilful effort to mislead", which led to a $5bn (£3.1bn) charge in its latest quarterly accounts.

It is a deal which has directly or indirectly involved all of the Big Four, with KPMG brought in to conduct diligence on Autonomy after Deloitte signed off its audit of the UK company in 2010. Later PwC was brought in to carry out the report into the takeover, while Ernst & Young audit HP.

The takeover is already the subject of an investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission and the US’s Department of Justice.

In addition, HP is also being sued by shareholders claiming the computer company knowingly made misleading statements over the contentious Autonomy takeover.

The FRC says its decision to initiate an investigation was taken following consultation with ICAEW.


Helen Roxburgh


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