Sygnia cites 'reputational risk' as it parts ways with auditors Deloitte

Asset management company Sygnia [JSE:SYG] announced on Wednesday that it had parted ways with its external auditors Deloitte. 

In an update to shareholders the company said its directors decided at a meeting in May to look for "alternative external auditors given our unsatisfactory engagement with Deloitte and the reputational risk associated with the firm".

Deloitte, meanwhile, said Sygnia's statement contained "factual inaccuracies" and promised to provide more information "in due course".  

Sygnia did not say what reputational risk factors had influenced its decision, but referred to "current news reports regarding the firm".

The group's CEO Madga Wierzycka is known as a frank critic of state and private sector corruption.  In its statement on Wednesday Sygnia said it informed Deloitte on June 5 of its intention to terminate its appointment at its next audit committee meeting on Thursday, June 13.

"Deloitte subsequently resigned as Sygnia’s auditors on 11 June 2019, ahead of Sygnia’s [meeting]," it said. "The process of reviewing and appointing alternative external auditors is well advanced and the appointment of Sygnia’s new auditors will be communicated in due course."

Deloitte, in response to the asset management group's announcement, said that Sygnia's statement "contains certain factual inaccuracies relating to the circumstances of our resignation".

"Whilst as Deloitte we maintain the highest standards of ethical behaviour and client confidentiality, we are of the view that it is prudent in this instance to set the record straight.  We intend to do so in due course."

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