SAP will make investigation findings on alleged relationship with Gupta-linked company public

13 July 2017 - 19:54 By Graeme Hosken
Ajay and Atul Gupta.
Ajay and Atul Gupta.
Image: Muntu Vilakazi/Gallo Images

Global software company SAP says they have seized the computers of four South African executives who have been placed on administrative leave following revelations about SAP’s relationship with a Gupta-linked company.

The company allegedly secured a tender with Transnet through the assistance of the 3D printing company‚ CAD House.

CAD House is owned by President Jacob Zuma's son‚ Duduzane‚ and businesses linked to the Gupta's Sahara Group.

CAD House allegedly secured 10% of SAP's R100-million deal with Transnet as a commissioning fee.

Leaked Gupta emails also show how the controversial family gained access to highly confidential draft contracts between SAP and Eskom.

On Wednesday night SAP confirmed it had suspended four staff members over the allegations of impropriety.

“What I can say is that the computers of four SAP South African executives‚ who have been put on administrative leave‚ have been obtained for the investigation. We are working to recover this data effectively. We are looking at all elements‚ including emails‚" SAP executive board member Adaire Fox-Martin said on Thursday in a Skype interview.

“A forensic team is on the ground and reviewing SAP's datasets. They are looking at the ‘who‚ what‚ why and when’ holistically as part of this review process.”

But Fox-Martin would reveal little else.

“We will review the entire business of SAP South Africa. I can only answer questions on the review of SAP South Africa's deals once review process has been completed.

“But‚ I can say we are confident in our internal review processes‚" Fox-Martin said.

She would not say whether the company will approach South African or international law enforcement agencies with the findings from its internal probe.

The German-based company will also not say what the terms of reference are for its own internal forensic review. SAP also remained mum on how deals such as those with Transnet and Eskom are secured and how approvals from SAP Global were granted.

The SAP/Eskom contract‚ valued at R130-million‚ was for a SAP management tool that tracks purchasing‚ invoicing and payment documents.

She said SAP rejected all the allegations which had been made in the media.

Asked how the allegations could be rejected when the investigation had yet to be completed‚ she said that those on administrative leave were innocent until proven otherwise.

She said she was unable to say how long the review would take‚ “but it will be thorough”.

Fox-Martin declined to comment on how deals with CAD House had been structured.

“From a general perspective when it comes to third parties and deals‚ due diligence processes are always applied.”

“Once the outcome is known it will be made public. We are doing this [the internal review] because we owe it to the broader South African community‚ our clients and employees.”