Companies & Sectors
Walmart’s insider probe for corruption

Retail giant, which wanted to enter the retail space in India, is investigating possible bribe to foreign officials

Global giant Walmart, which has been lobbying for entering organised retail in India, has begun an internal investigation about executives possibly having bribed foreign officials. In a disclosure filed before the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Walmart has said that it is conducting an ‘internal review’ on the allegations of violation(s) of Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

“During fiscal 2012, the company began conducting a voluntary internal review of its policies, procedures and internal controls pertaining to its global anti-corruption compliance program. As a result of information obtained during that review and from other sources, the company has begun an internal investigation into whether certain matters, including permitting, licensing and inspections, were in compliance with the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. The company has engaged outside counsel and other advisors to assist in the review of these matters and has implemented, and is continuing to implement, appropriate remedial measures,” said Walmart in its Form 10-Q filed on 8 December 2011. However, the company did not give out any other details.

Despite the possibility of a serious violation, Walmart does not ‘believe’ that these matters will have a material adverse effect on its business, financial condition, results of operations or cash flows. “We cannot reasonably estimate the potential liability, if any, related to these matters,” said the company in the disclosure.

Walmart says it has engaged external counsellors and lawyers in this review and it is continuing to implement remedial measures.

In 2011, Walmart has two lawsuits pending—one against gender harassment and another on wage issues. The company has also been pulled up by authorities in USA and Brazil for environmental violations. California authorities initiated an investigation of whether third party contractors hired by the company were engaged in disposal of construction materials at a local landfill. In Brazil, two municipalities are investigating alleged local soil contamination due oil leakage from some stores. Walmart doesn’t believe either of these cases will adversely impact its finances.

Walmart’s revenues last year amounted to $440 billion. It has about 2,000,000 employees.



surjit singh

5 years ago

No wonder Manmohan Singh is keen on pushing through the FDI bill with the utmost speed.

Axis MF introduces Capital Protection Oriented Fund (Series 3)

Axis MF new issue closes on 23rd December

Axis Mutual Fund has launched Axis Capital Protection Oriented Fund (Series 3), a close-ended income scheme.

The Scheme will endeavour to protect the capital by investing in a portfolio of debt and money market instruments that are maturing on or before the maturity of the Scheme. The scheme also aims to provide capital appreciation through exposure in equity and equity related instruments. The duration of the scheme is 3 years.

The new issue closes on 23rd December. The minimum investment amount is Rs5,000.

CRISIL MIP Blended Index is the benchmark index. R Sivakumar and Sudhanshu Asthana are the fund managers of the scheme.


PDS leakage down to 10-15%: Government

The leakage has come down to 10%-15% from 40% as stated in the Economic Survey for 2010-11 minister of state for consumer affairs and public distribution KV Thomas said

New Delhi: The government today claimed there has been an “impressive improvement” in the performance of the targeted public distribution system (TPDS), with leakage reduced to about 10%-15% on average now from 40% earlier, reports PTI.

“The leakage, on an average, is nearly 10%-15%,” minister of state for consumer affairs and public distribution KV Thomas said in a reply during Question Hour in the Rajya Sabha.

The government provides subsidised foodgrain to the poor through the TPDS. The Economic Survey for 2010-11 prepared by the finance ministry had indicated that over 40% of the grain meant for distribution to the poor through the TPDS does not reach the target audience.

The onus for procurement, allocation and transportation of foodgrain up to the designated depots of Food Corporation of India (FCI) lies with the central government.

The duty of lifting and distributing the allocated foodgrain to the eligible people through fair price shops is with the states.

Mr Thomas said that the estimates in the Economic Survey for 2010-11 were prepared on the basis of a study conducted by economist Reetika Khera and the latest study, done by a group of research scholars, including Ms Khera, recently opined, “There has been an impressive revival in the TPDS across the country.”

“The group has based its findings on a study made in 106 randomly selected villages, spread over two districts each in nine states, covering a total of 1,227 BPL/Antyodaya households,” Mr Thomas said.

The team visited various states, including Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Himachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.

“It has also been pointed out the days when up to half of the PDS grain was diverted to the open market are gone,” he added.


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