PracticePeople In PracticeBusiness – Irregularities behind SEP suspension

Business - Irregularities behind SEP suspension

Accounting irregularities have been blamed for the suspension of SEP Industrial Holdings’ shares last week.

Trading in the Surrey-based manufacturer’s shares was halted under stock exchange rules which require publication of company results within six months of the year end. Trading has been suspended pending the release of SEP’s results for the year to 30 September 1998.

An SEP spokesman said the results had failed to emerge due to ‘substantial inaccuracies’ in financial information which had been submitted to the board. Forensic accountants are now investigating the irregularities which are thought to stem from consolidation of accounts for the group’s subsidiaries.

Discrepancies dating back several years are understood to have been discovered which relate to trading between the subsidiaries.

Difficulties at SEP emerged following the collapse of Quintech, a software subsidiary which went into receivership last November. SEP had planned to float off Quintech, taking advantage of last year’s boom in hi-tech stocks. When the business failed, finance director Paul Curson resigned.

Curson, who still holds a substantial shareholding in the company, said he was ‘surprised’ by the revelations. As Accountancy Age went to press, he was due to meet Ian Boyd, his successor, in an attempt to discover what went wrong.

Conservative party defence spokesman John Maples – a former SEP director and member of the company’s audit committee – was said to be ‘horrified’ by the suspension.

SEP shares, 30p a year ago, have been suspended at 10.25p.

Related Articles

Is inefficiency stealing your time and money?

Accounting Firms Is inefficiency stealing your time and money?

4m Emma Smith, Managing Editor
CIMA elects new president

Institutes CIMA elects new president

4m Emma Smith, Managing Editor
Transparent currency trade: How to achieve costs visibility

Governance Transparent currency trade: How to achieve costs visibility

5m Emma Smith, Managing Editor
Magma Group announces merger, partner promotions

Accounting Firms Magma Group announces merger, partner promotions

8m Emma Smith, Managing Editor
MHA MacIntyre Hudson advises on management buy-out

Accounting Firms MHA MacIntyre Hudson advises on management buy-out

8m Emma Smith, Managing Editor
Introduction to KPMG UK’s new leadership team

Accounting Firms Introduction to KPMG UK’s new leadership team

5m Emma Smith, Managing Editor
EY appoints head of UK Infrastructure Asset Intelligence practice

Accounting Firms EY appoints head of UK Infrastructure Asset Intelligence practice

6m Emma Smith, Managing Editor
FRP Advisory expands operation with new office, partner appointments

Accounting Firms FRP Advisory expands operation with new office, partner appointments

8m Emma Smith, Managing Editor