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Accounting watchdog fines Patisserie Valerie’s auditors

Tuesday 28th September, 2021

Accountancy firm Grant Thornton has been fined £2.3m in relation to their 2015 to 2017 audits of the collapsed café chain Patisserie Valerie.

According to the Financial Reporting Council, Grant Thornton had acted as statutory auditor for Patisserie Holdings Plc since 2007 and signed off clean audit opinions for the financial statements in each of the FY15, FY16 and FY17 Audits.

David Newstead, Audit Engagement Partner was also fined £150,000 this was adjusted to £87,750. 

Claudia Mortimore, Deputy Executive Counsel to the FRC, said: “This Decision Notice sets out numerous breaches of Relevant Requirements across three separate audit years, evidencing a serious lack of competence in conducting the audit work.

The audit of Patisserie Holdings Plc’s revenue and cash in particular involved missed red flags, a failure to obtain sufficient audit evidence and a failure to stand back and question information provided by management.

As a result of this investigation, GT has taken remedial actions to improve its processes and to prevent a recurrence of these types of breaches. The package of financial and non-financial sanctions should also help to improve the quality of future audits.”

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