- The company was a credit card payment processor, and also the answer to California’s Silicon Valley.
- In June 2020, Wirecard was admitted into the Dax, at double of Deutsche Bank’s valuation, before being quickly kicked out, because of a major scandal.
- It turns out that the company was created by money launderers for the purpose of laundering criminal proceeds.
- The company survived for two decades. Its admission to the Dax actually demonstrates “The abject failure of Wirecard’s auditors and the German regulators to do one thing: their jobs.”
- In 2002, Germany created BaFin, a regulator to monitor financial frauds, in the wake of the Enron Scandal, but allocated only €6 m as a budget, enough for 14 employees.
- When financial analysts (short sellers) reported to BaFin the likely wrongdoing of Wirecard, the regulator actually turned against the whistleblowers and opened investigations into market manipulations.
- BaFin also defended Porsche and Volkswagen in their own respective scandals.
- Wirecard’ auditors – EY no less – never detected any malfeasance, for decades.
- The non-exec directors of the board never saw any malfeasance either.
- The story only came to light because investigative journalists came out with the research (below) to confirm the malfeasance. The story is worth of the best spy novels – expensive attorneys, Russian connections, slush funds, fake surveillance stories, threats and many other treats.
- Worse, the BaFin regulators have survived the scandal and kept their jobs.
Fraudulent executives proceedings in their crime for years, retaliating against whistleblowers, with the support of the regulator, in a major developed country. What worse could you imagine?
That it happens also here. It would never happen, right? Your thoughts?