BusinessBusiness RecoveryAhold in another accounting error

Ahold in another accounting error

Dutch supermarket concern Ahold has incorrectly consolidated the results of Scandinavian subsidiary ICA, thus beefing up its operating results.

Other stories Ahold lawsuit names Deloitte

Ahold in its annual report for 2001 attributed its strong rise in revenues to the addition of ICA results. It consolidated ICA’s results in 2001 and 2000.

However, Dutch paper NRC Handelsblad yesterday learned that Ahold does not have full control over the subsidiary. ‘None of our shareholders has got a majority in the board, not even Ahold,’ said Peter Dettman, head of ICA Forbundet Invest, which is shareholder and director of ICA Ahold.

Consolidating a subsidiary that is not under control is against Dutch accounting rules. When asked about the consolidation, Ahold referred to its statement of last month. ‘We then said the the figures are wrong,’ an Ahold spokeswoman said.

The accounting error inflated operating results, but not Ahold’s net profit.

In the meantime, Ahold yesterday appointed a Briton to be its rescuer. Former BAE Systems finance director Dudley Eustace, will act as interim chief financial officer.

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