Finding Price Waterhouse guilty in the multi-crore Satyam scam, Sebi on Thursday banned its network entities from issuing audit certificates to any listed companyin India for two years and ordered disgorgement of over Rs 13 crore wrongful gains from the audit major and its two erstwhile partners who worked on the IT major's accounts.
The market regulator's order comes after nine years post the scam at Satyam Computer Services came to light and after two failed attempts by auditor major Price Waterhouse to settle the case through consent mechanism.
This is also one of the most stringent orders passed by any regulator against a Big Four audit major. "We are disappointed with the findings of the Sebi investigations and the adjudication order... we are confident of getting a stay before this order becomes effective," Price Waterhouse said in a statement.
In a 108-page order, Sebi has imposed a two-year ban on entities/ firms practicing as chartered accountants in India under the brand and banner of PW from directly or indirectly issuing any certificate of audit of listed companies, compliance of obligations of listed companies and intermediaries registered with the regulator.
Sebi noted that the order would not impact audit assignments relating to the financial year 2017-18 undertaken by the firms forming part of the PW network.
Besides, Price Waterhouse Bangalore and its two erstwhile partners -- S Gopalakrishnan and Srinivas Talluri -- have audit certificates for 2 yrs