Steinhoff CEO quits over accounting irregularities

A Steinhoff International Holdings NV logo sits on display outside the company's offices in Stellenbosch South Africa on Wednesday Aug. 17 2016

A Steinhoff International Holdings NV logo sits on display outside the company's offices in Stellenbosch South Africa on Wednesday Aug. 17 2016

In a statement last night the company said: "The supervisory board of Steinhoff wishes to advise shareholders that new information has come to light today which relates to accounting irregularities requiring further investigation".

Steinhoff worldwide CEO Markus Jooste stepped down on Tuesday with German prosecutors saying a number of officials are now under investigation.

"The supervisory board, in consultation with the statutory auditors of the company, has approached PwC to perform an independent investigation".

South African billionaire and chairman of the company, Christo Wiese, will run the company on a temporary basis.

The state prosecutor in Oldenburg, Germany has been investigating suspected accounting irregularities since 2015, looking into whether revenues were booked properly, and taxable profit was correctly declared.

Amazon launches online store in Australia
Retail categories most likely to be hurt by Amazon's entry include electrical, appliances, apparel and cosmetics, UBS added. In 2016, more than 100,000 small businesses across the globe achieved sales of over US$100,000 through selling on Amazon .

Steinhoff International debt also plunged, with €800m of senior unsecured bonds due in 2025 falling as much as 41 cents on the euro, to 42 cents, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

PSG Financial Services advised shareholders on Wednesday that its board of directors received and accepted the resignation of Jooste as a non-executive director of PSG Group and PSG Financial Services, with immediate effect. Steinhoff Africa slumped as much as 29% in Johannesburg, while Shoprite plunged as much as 6.3%, the biggest fall in nearly a year.

Steinhoff shares traded 64% lower at €1.08 as of 16:02 in Frankfurt.

Steinhoff said in a statement that it would publish its audited 2017 consolidated financial statements when it is in a position to do so. Attempts to contact Jooste were not immediately successful. "In addition, the Company will determine whether any prior years' financial statements will need to be restated", it said.

KAP Industrial Holdings, in which Steinhoff is a major shareholder, fell the most in six months even as the firm said in a statement it is independently managed. Theodore de Klerk was appointed as his replacement, PSG said on Wednesday.

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