Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Stolen info SBM Offshore about alleged $ 250 million fraud (2)

I wrote before about this case: an angry former employee who allegedly blackmailed SBM Offshore and published a list of potential problem cases in the on-going bribery investigations.

Today, finally, SBM published their findings:

  • The Company paid approximately US$200 million in commissions to agents during that period of which the majority relate to three countries: US$18.8 million to Equatorial Guinea, US$22.7 million to Angola and US$139.1 million to Brazil;
  • In respect of Angola and Equatorial Guinea there is some evidence that payments may have been made directly or indirectly to government officials;
  • In respect of Brazil there were certain red flags but the investigation did not find any credible evidence that the Company or the Company’s agent made improper payments to government officials (including state company employees). Rather, the agent provided substantial and legitimate services in a market which is by far the largest for the Company;

Other Countries
At the outset of the investigation, the Company froze all payments to agents and conducted a review and due diligence on sales agents in all other countries. As a result of that review the Company decided to discontinue certain agents. Also, the Company decided to no longer use agents in countries where it has a presence. The investigation team also specifically looked at other countries covered by the agreements with the agent used in Equatorial Guinea and Angola but in its evidence-based approach did not perform a further detailed investigation into these countries.

In the list of the angry ex-employee three Malaysian companies were mentioned: MISC, Barnado and Delcom. SBM Offshore apparently has not found anything wrong with these business relations. SBM Offshore has now a presence in Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur), and will thus not use agents anymore.

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