Pactiv Evergreen will not face an enforcement action by the Department of Justice, following an internal investigation launched last year into potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).
The foodservice packaging company said in a regulatory filing May 6 that the Justice Department “decided to close its file … without any action against the company” after reviewing investigation findings presented by the company in February. Pactiv Evergreen said it is still waiting on a decision from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in the matter.
“We intend to fully cooperate with the SEC, with the assistance of legal counsel, to conclude this matter,” the company said. “We are unable at this time to predict when the review of this matter by the SEC will be completed or what regulatory or other consequences may result.”
In August 2020, Pactiv Evergreen disclosed it had identified practices in its Evergreen Packaging Shanghai business—part of its beverage merchandising segment—that may have violated the FCPA. In September 2020, the company voluntarily self-disclosed to the Justice Department and the SEC the relevant items and its investigation.
In last week’s update on the investigation, Pactiv Evergreen said it “identified the occasional giving of gift cards representing relatively minor monetary values to government regulators and employees of state-owned enterprise customers in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) over the course of several years,” the company stated. “The amounts involved were immaterial, individually and in the aggregate, and these appear to have been provided at the times of PRC holidays for generalized goodwill purposes only.
“We have initiated procedures to remediate such practices, including discontinuing the giving of gift cards. We also identified certain other gift, travel, and entertainment practices that do not comply with company policy and expectations. These findings provided an opportunity for targeted, enhanced controls and additional training in these areas.”