In case you missed it this week, despite reminders from the SEC, T-Mobile releases non-GAAP data; the CEO of a German stock exchange operator resigns; and Newegg faces charges of coconspiracy.
No records, no rules, no problem | It hasn’t been a stellar week for education administrators. The Orlando Sentinel published a 3-part expose on a string of Floridian private schools that pocketed roughly $1b per year through state-backed scholarship funds (vouchers). The schools, with little to no oversight or regulations, went so far as to falsify health and safety records, and hire staff with no degrees. Across the country in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the former head of four charter schools plead guilty for defrauding the institutions over the course of 15 years. David Scott Glasrud ran a series of schemes that included creating fake companies that he funneled cash through—in one instance he leased a building, and then subleased it to one of the schools at twice what he was paying. Almost all the money went toward paying his substantial gambling debt. Bold move.
Laid an Egg | Four South Korean banks filed charges against Newegg, an electronics retailer, alleging the company was a co-conspirator to a 2015 fraud suit. The banks claim Newegg and two other companies, Moneual and ASI, participated in a dubious dance of transactions to secure loans that they never paid back. Moneual would sell $8 units to Newegg and ASI for nearly $3k, and then kick back a chunk of the profits. Newegg says “not true,” but a jury trial will be the one making that call.
Schadenfreude | The CEO of the German stock exchange operator Deutsche Börse resigned amid an insider trading investigation. The probe focuses on a slew of 2015 meetings between Deutsche Börse and the London Stock Exchange, which were followed by a failed merger attempt. The CEO, Carsten Kengeter, tried to negotiate a settlement, but the courts said, “hard pass,” and now Carsten is updating his LinkedIn to “former.”
Simple sleight of hand | T-Mobile broke open the champagne as they announced another round of record earnings, but the SEC is telling them to slow their roll. The metrics that T-Mobile released weren’t GAAP-savvy (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles), meaning the data they’re releasing isn’t necessarily laid out the same as everyone else’s. This isn’t the first time T-Mobile has come under fire either—in 2016 an investor group sent a letter to the SEC asking for a closer look at the wireless carrier’s accounting. As if that weren’t bad enough, the financial watchdog recently released a reminder on GAAP best practices. Last week. Bad timing, friend.
The first one is always free | Insys Therapeutics’ founder was arrested this week on charges of conspiracy to profit from illegally-distributed pain medications; he’s the seventh executive arrested this year in relation to this scandal. Prosecutors allege that the pharma company committed insurance fraud solely for profit, and potentially contributed to the current nation-wide opioid epidemic. Insys Therapeutics would (allegedly) lie to doctors and insurance companies, getting highly-addictive cancer medication prescribed to patients who didn’t need it. Earlier this year the company agreed to pay Massachusetts $500k for similar charges. Not sure half a million in cash and perpetuating a life-ending addiction evens out.
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