Clariant faces sanctions over alleged reporting breaches
ZURICH (Reuters) -Swiss specialty chemical maker Clariant is facing sanctions concerning alleged violations of financial reporting regulations, SIX Exchange Regulation (SER) said on Friday.
Clariant's 2020 and 2021 IFRS annual financial statements contained misstatements, said SER, which monitors compliance with legal and regulatory requirements for the Swiss stock exchange.
The alleged errors relate to the recognition of unjustified provisions in the 2020 IFRS financial statements and insufficient disclosures in connection with the correction of those errors in the 2021 statements, SER said.
"For this reason SER has submitted a request for a sanction to the Sanctions Commission of SIX Group against Clariant Ltd on 2 March 2023," SER said in a statement.
Clariant delayed the release of its 2021 results in February 2022 as investigators looked into allegations that some staff manipulated accounts in 2020 and 2021 to help meet financial targets.
The inquiry, triggered by whistleblowers, found no impact on sales and cash previously reported, although it replaced its chief financial officer "to allow for a fresh start".
A Clariant spokesperson said SIX was investigating in the general context of the postponement including both ad-hoc duty and financial reporting.
"This was to be expected and does not come as a surprise. Of course we are working together with the SIX in full transparency," the spokesperson said.
The proceedings are separate to an investigation by SER into Clariant for a potential violation of the rules on ad hoc publicity, SER said.
SER said it would provide no further information while proceedings are ongoing.
(Reporting by John Revill; editing by Kim Coghill and Jason Neely)