FRC fines KPMG £3m for audit failings

KPMG has been fined £3 million by the UK accounting regulator, the Financial Reporting Council (FRC), for audit failings at collapsed alcohol retailer Conviviality, the second set of sanctions against the firm in “as many days,” according to the Financial Times. The Big Four firm failed to gather enough evidence to support its work or to apply sufficient professional scepticism during the audit of Conviviality’s accounts for the year to April 2017, the FRC found. It also failed to document audit procedures properly or to revise its assessment of risks of material misstatement in the accounts as fresh information emerged, the regulator said on Wednesday. Conviviality, the Aimlisted owner of Bargain Booze, entered administration in April 2018, after a failed attempt to raise fresh funds from investors.

KPMG was also found to have breached ethical rules by failing to document how it assessed threats to its independence as auditor when it agreed to do non-audit work for the drinks retailer. The firm was issued a severe reprimand and ordered to report to the watchdog on the causes of the problems and on what steps it had taken to prevent a repeat. It is the second time an auditor has been penalised for failings at Conviviality. Grant Thornton was previously fined £2 million for breaches between 2014 and 2017. Nicola Quayle, the KPMG partner who led the audit, was reprimanded and fined more than £80,000.




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