Austrian S&T hires Deloitte for external audit after activist investor report

The Deloitte Company logo is seen on a commercial tower in Gurgaon, on the outskirts of New Delhi, on August 9, 2012. REUTERS / Parivartan Sharma

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BERLIN, Dec.28 (Reuters) – Austrian IT company S&T (SANT1.VI) has commissioned Deloitte to conduct an external audit following allegations by activist investor Viceroy Research, it said on Tuesday.

After a Viceroy report released this month hammered S & T’s share price, the company released a detailed response to the allegations.

“Our statement shows that Viceroy Research made many far-reaching errors of judgment in its report, which do not stand up to objective examination,” said S&T Managing Director Hannes Niederhauser, adding that Viceroy had not contacted the company before publishing its report.

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The allegations referred to the company’s structure, “off-balance sheet entities” and its operations in Eastern Europe.

S&T said its supervisory board would appoint an independent external expert as Chief Compliance Officer, responsible for legal, compliance and corporate governance matters to its board.

“We will comment on the results of this independent audit as they become available,” said Niederhauser.

The supervisory board will also propose to appoint KPMG as new auditor from fiscal year 2022, replacing EY, he added.

“Operationally, we remain within the expected range and maintain our current forecast for the current year,” added Niederhauser.

S & T’s Austria-listed shares were up 5.1% as of 08:20 GMT, while German-listed shares were up 4.4% after Tuesday’s statement.

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Reporting by Riham Alkousaa, editing by Miranda Murray and Louise Heavens

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Shirlene J. Manley