Cement and lime manufacturer Adelaide Brighton has called in forensic accountants from KPMG to investigate $14 million in underpayments by some clients, it believes were co-ordinated by one of its own employees.
“While the investigation is still in the process,” the ASX-listed manufacturer said on November 13, “it appears that there may have been deliberately hidden underpayments by customers over a sustained period.”
The company confirmed guidance for full year 2017 underlying profit after tax of between $188 million and $198 million, and said the $14 million in missing payments would be classed as doubtful debts on its next financial statement.
The alleged fraud was identified through Adelaide Brighton’s existing compliance and risk management systems and processes, the company said, but in light of the matter, it plans to strengthen these measures further.
“The company has reported this matter to its auditors and will co-operate with relevant authorities as appropriate as the investigation proceeds,” Adelaide Brighton said.