Deloitte denies HP claim on audit missteps

Nov 21, 2012
The keyboard of a Hewlett-Packard desktop computer. The audit and consulting firm Deloitte on Wednesday rejected claims by US tech giant Hewlett-Packard that it missed "accounting improprieties" at the British firm Autonomy ahead of a takeover.

The audit and consulting firm Deloitte on Wednesday rejected claims by US tech giant Hewlett-Packard that it missed "accounting improprieties" at the British firm Autonomy ahead of a takeover.

Deloitte's comments came a day after reported a massive loss and blamed deliberate financial misstatements from the British software firm it bought in 2011.

A statement from the London office of Deloitte said the firm "was not engaged by HP, or by Autonomy, to provide any due diligence in relation to the acquisition of Autonomy."

It added that Deloitte UK "was auditor to Autonomy at the time of its acquisition by HP" but that it never uncovered any irregularities.

"Deloitte categorically denies that it had any knowledge of any accounting improprieties or in Autonomy's financial statements," the statement said.

"We conducted our audit work in full compliance with regulation and professional standards. We are unable to discuss our audit work further due to client confidentiality. We will cooperate with the relevant authorities with any investigations into these allegations."

HP said Tuesday it was taking a writedown of $8.8 billion, largely because of the reduced value of the software company acquired just over a year ago for more than $10 billion.

While writedowns under accounting rules are not unusual for slumping firms, HP said this was a case of deliberately misleading statements by Autonomy that went unnoticed until now, and it called for probes by US and British authorities.

HP chief executive , who took over after the acquisition, said the HP board at the time "relied on audited financials, audited by Deloitte."

She said another audit firm, KPMG, was hired "to audit Deloitte, and neither of them saw what we now see."

HP said it launched an internal investigation "after a senior member of Autonomy's leadership team came forward," prompting a fresh review by PricewaterhouseCoopers.

As a result, HP said it "now believes that Autonomy was substantially overvalued at the time of its acquisition."

Explore further: Monoprice takes on Amazon in trade of cheap electronics

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

HP gains control of Autonomy

Oct 03, 2011

Hewlett-Packard said Monday that it has closed its $10.24 billion purchase of British software company Autonomy, a deal which contributed to the downfall of former HP chief executive Leo Apotheker.

HP extends offer for Autonomy

Sep 13, 2011

US computer giant Hewlett-Packard said on Tuesday it is extending its $10.24 billion offer for Autonomy as it seeks to bring more shareholders of the British software company on board.

HP tabs software exec as chief operating officer

May 30, 2012

(AP) — Hewlett-Packard Co. has promoted Bill Veghte to chief operating officer, the latest expansion of his responsibilities since the slumping technology company hired Meg Whitman as its CEO eight months ago.

Groupon replaces 2 directors

May 01, 2012

(AP) -- Online deals company Groupon Inc. said Monday that it will replace two board members with executives from American Express Co. and accounting firm Deloitte LLP.

Recommended for you

Chinese tech giant Alibaba set to make a splash with US IPO

14 hours ago

The largest tech IPO of the year will come from a company that many Americans have never heard of. Alibaba Group - a Chinese e-commerce behemoth - has decided to go public in the U.S. after months of speculation that it would ...

Ex-Apple chief plans mobile phone for India

Apr 19, 2014

Former Apple chief executive John Sculley, whose marketing skills helped bring the personal computer to desktops worldwide, says he plans to launch a mobile phone in India to exploit its still largely untapped ...

Airbnb rental site raises $450 mn

Apr 19, 2014

Online lodging listings website Airbnb inked a $450 million funding deal with investors led by TPG, a source close to the matter said Friday.

User comments : 0

More news stories

Finnish inventor rethinks design of the axe

(Phys.org) —Finnish inventor Heikki Kärnä is the man behind the Vipukirves Leveraxe, which is a precision tool for splitting firewood. He designed the tool to make the job easier and more efficient, with ...

Making graphene in your kitchen

Graphene has been touted as a wonder material—the world's thinnest substance, but super-strong. Now scientists say it is so easy to make you could produce some in your kitchen.

Poll: Big Bang a big question for most Americans

Few Americans question that smoking causes cancer. But they have more skepticism than confidence in global warming, the age of the Earth and evolution and have the most trouble believing a Big Bang created the universe 13.8 ...