PwC Australia is reported to be close to
reaching a settlement on a case brought against the audit firm and
owner of former client Centro, according to Australian
The alleged A$200m ($209m) agreement, which is
believed to represent the largest settlement ever reached in an
Australian shareholder class action, involves shopping centre
company Centro, directors and its auditor at the time PwC. The
auditor might pay up to a third of the amount, the Sydney
Morning Herald reports.
The class action against Centro and PwC was
filed by two sets of shareholders seeking damages for one of the
largest accounting failures in Australian corporate history.
In a hearing before judge Federal Court judge
Michelle Gordon last month, PwC admitted negligence but not
liability in relation to a $1.1 billion short-term loan that had
been misclassified as long term, causing the then second largest
shopping centre company in Australia to nearly collapse. Centro
only revealed its difficulties in refinancing this debt in December
PwC Australia did not respond to an
International Accounting Bulletin request for comment.
Last month, the firm reiterated a statement it
issued prior to the court proceedings that said the claims were