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Jonathan Skerrett
4 months ago by Jonathan Skerrett
Rutherfordsearch Wirecard Graphs

​Wirecard shares slump over missing €1.9bn

​​We’ve all been there.

​I’ve lost countless wallets: on buses, on trains, on planes; you name it.​

And although my sorrow was deep, it is hard to imagine what Wirecard CEO Markus Braun was feeling yesterday, as he watched his company’s share price tumble a staggering €61.28 to €39.90 per share.

For reference, Wirecard joined Germany’s blue-chip Dax 30 share index two years ago. At the time, it was valued at €24bn, but following the latest share price crash this has fallen to just €4bn.

This is all due to a missing €1.9bn.

The scandal came to light after a series of articles in the Financial Times last year focusing on alleged accounting irregularities in Wirecard’s Asian operations.

​Wirecard said the missing money was supposed to be held in accounts at two Asian banks and had been set aside for “risk management”.​

EY auditors, preparing last year’s financial statement, said the banks had been unable to provide the account numbers.​

Wirecard said there were “indications that spurious balance confirmations had been provided” by a trustee “in order to deceive the auditor and create a wrong perception of the existence of such cash balances or the holding of the accounts” and “The Wirecard management board is working intensively together with the auditor towards a clarification of the situation.”

Today, Braun said in a video statement that:

‘At present it cannot be ruled out that Wirecard AG has become the aggrieved party in a case of fraud of considerable proportions.’​

Stay tuned for more drama and grandiose visions from Braun, who had previously vowed to make ‘payments invisible’ and denied sanctioning a spying operation in London on Wirecard critics late last year, involving 28 private investigators and headed by a Libyan intelligence officer.​

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Jonathan Skerrett is a Director at Rutherford, the executive legal and compliance recruitment specialists.

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