A California-based technology company has, in the space of two months, fired two Big Four firms auditing its books and is now looking for a third.
Link: Audit news
John Arme, chief executive of the SureBeam Corporation, a technology company that irradiates food, placed an ad for new auditors yesterday after firing Deloitte & Touche and KPMG.
Deloitte was dismissed yesterday after the auditors ‘raised issues of concern regarding accounting treatment used by SureBeam for certain transactions beginning in 2000,’ SureBeam said in a statement.
Deloitte said an 8-K form would be filed by the firm which will provide further details on those issues.
In June, KPMG was sacked. This time it was because the company though the auditor’s $342,000 bill was too hefty. This Big Four firm had been hired 14 months earlier, replacing a disintegrating Andersen, which only charged audit fees of $239,205.
Arme conceded that it might be difficult to find a new auditor. His company is already in financial difficulties and Arme vowed to cut costs and increase revenues in June.
But he was philosophical about his prospects of finding a new auditor. ‘In the time I was in the profession, from 1957 to 1992, the entire atmosphere was so different. You were making the decision based more on professional judgement rather than on fear of being sued.’