Philips to probe 'accounting errors' in Mexico

25th May 2011, Comments 0 comments

Dutch electronics giant Philips said Wednesday it was probing bookkeeping errors at its Mexican subsidiary for 2009 but added it was unlikely to impact the group's results for that year.

The probe is the second upset to hit the Eindhoven-based company in recent months, following a corruption trial for three of its employees in Poland.

"We have opened an inquiry of our own accord into figures we received from Mexico in 2009," Philips spokesman Steve Klink told AFP.

"We do not expect the problems to be big enough for it to change the group's overall results," he added.

Local Dutch newspaper the Eindhovens Dagblad, citing documents obtained from US-based auditors KPMG, said the error was a result of "fraud" within Philips Mexico's medical equipment division.

The newspaper said that based on KPMG's report, the figures were being "manipulated" and would indeed affect Philips' 2009 results. It did not give amounts however.

Klink could not specify how much the company's Mexico office contributed to annual turnover but stressed Mexico was not among the eight countries where the Dutch group recorded its main sales.

Three Polish staff members went on trial for corruption earlier this month in the western city of Poznan.

They are accused of paying sums ranging from several million to hundreds of millions of zlotys (euros, dollars) to 16 hospital officials in exchange for tenders won by Philips.

Philips employs about 117,000 people and while for a long time specialising in the production of TVs and household appliances, it moved into the manufacturing of medical equipment over the past 12 years.

The group posted turnover 25.42 billion euro ($5.6 billion) last year.

© 2011 AFP

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