Steinhoff International Holdings N.V. : UPDATE ON FORENSIC INVESTIGATION AND FINANCIAL REPORTING TIMELINE
STEINHOFF - UPDATE ON FORENSIC INVESTIGATION AND FINANCIAL REPORTING TIMELINE
Steinhoff International Holdings N.V. (the "Company") (together with its subsidiaries, the "Group")
The current year has been an extremely challenging one for the Steinhoff Group. In addition to embarking on a comprehensive forensic investigation the Company has simultaneously been involved in a complex international financial restructuring process involving a diverse group of financial creditors while continuing to keep the global operations running across more than 30 countries. The Group is today providing an update on the progress of the forensic investigation and on the expected timetable to publish its audited Group financial statements for 2017 and 2018.
The forensic investigation being undertaken by PwC has progressed well. The investigative process has been significantly more complex than initially anticipated, with multiple work streams operating across a number of jurisdictions. The investigation is substantially complete but more time is required to finalise a number of follow up work streams. The investigation is now expected to be complete by the end of February 2019, with the final report being available to the Company shortly thereafter.
The Company anticipates providing the market with an overview of PwC's findings after it has had time to review the full final report. This overview will ensure that the legally privileged nature of the report is not undermined and its position in the various pending legal and other proceedings is not jeopardized.
While significant progress has been made in a number of areas, the full implications of the accumulated findings of the PwC report on the Group's 2017 and 2018 financial statements are still being analysed to ensure that the correct accounting treatment and related disclosures are adopted. This aspect remains a very crucial and complex area.
Once the forensic report findings and the final accounting treatments are resolved by the Group, the statutory auditors need to complete the outstanding audit processes for all of the years involved in the build up to these financial statements.
Unfortunately, despite significant efforts being exerted by all parties, it is now clear that the timeline for completing the Group consolidated financial reporting and audit process has shifted and it will not be possible for all the work required to be finalised within the original timeframe.
The Company now estimates that it will publish its Group audited financial statements for 2017 and 2018 by the middle of April 2019. The 2017 and 2018 financial statements for Steinhoff Investment Holdings Ltd will be released shortly thereafter.
Chairperson Heather Sonn said:
"We sincerely regret this revision to the reporting timeline. While substantial progress has been made, the volume and complexity of the work required, including the interactions between the various parties, has been significantly greater than initially anticipated and more time is needed for all parties involved to complete the outstanding tasks. I would like to assure all stakeholders that we continue to approach these projects with maximum effort and commitment as we seek to bring them to conclusion.
"In parallel, our financial restructuring continues to make good progress. Our recently announced plans regarding the restructuring of the Group's financial indebtedness are significant milestones and will bring in a new period of financial stability for the Group. These plans are unaffected by today's announcement."
Shareholders and other investors in the Company are advised to exercise caution when dealing in the securities of the Group.
Stellenbosch, 6 December 2018
06.12.2018 Dissemination of a Corporate News, transmitted by DGAP - a service of EQS Group AG.The issuer is solely responsible for the content of this announcement.The DGAP Distribution Services include Regulatory Announcements, Financial/Corporate News and Press Releases. Archive at www.dgap.deLanguage: English Company: Steinhoff International Holdings N.V. Herengracht 466 1017 CA Amsterdam
Netherlands Phone: +27218080700 Fax: +27218080800 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Internet: www.steinhoffinternational.com ISIN: NL0011375019 WKN: A14XB9 Indices: SDAX Listed: Regulated Market in Frankfurt (Prime Standard); Regulated Unofficial Market in Berlin, Dusseldorf, Hamburg, Hanover, Munich, Stuttgart, Tradegate Exchange End of News DGAP News Service