Latest punishment

Grant Thornton fined over Sports Direct audit

Watchdog found failings in the audit of Sports Direct

Accountancy firm Grant Thornton has been hit with a £1.3 million penalty over “serious failings” in its audit of leisure wear retailer Sports Direct.

The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) said the fine concerns the mid-tier firm’s handling of accounts for Sports Direct International, now Frasers Group, in 2016 and 2018.

Philip Westerman, the partner in charge of the audit at the time, was hit with an almost £80,000 fine.

It is the latest punishment for Grant Thornton which was fined £2.3m last year over failings in its accounting for Patisserie Valerie and almost £2m in 2020 over the audit of drinks group Conviviality.

Grant Thornton is expected to report back to the regulator on how it is improving its auditing standards

The FRC said Grant Thornton’s fine was reduced from £2.05m after it admitted to errors

A spokesman for the firm said: “We are pleased to now conclude these long-running matters, which date back to 2016.

“Having invested significantly in the quality of our audits since this time, we have seen a marked improvement in our results and are confident that the issues identified by the FRC’s investigations, whilst limited to discrete areas of the audits, are not reflective of the work we produce today.

“Today’s announcement marks the final outcome of legacy FRC investigations, all of which have been in the public domain for some time.”

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