PwC said at the time it had “determined that we are unable to continue as auditor of the Oceana Group”. It could not provide further details because of client confidentiality.
Sasfin Securities chief global equities strategist David Shapiro said on Thursday the appointment of well-respected Mazars sent the right message to the market.
“This is not some firm they’ve picked up in some country district. The auditors would also have come with guarantees or undertakings for the company to address issues that led to the departure of the previous auditors and to make sure controls are in place.”
Shapiro said he was “pleased” by the development as the market “does not want scandals” to bring down companies such as Oceana, which has thousands of employees and has “historically been a good business going back many years”.
“You want them to do well, survive and continue their operations.”
At the same time as the announcement of new auditors, Oceana released a strong trading update for the nine months ended June 26 2022 that “confirmed the indications of the strong second-half recovery it had anticipated at its interim results”.
Canned fish sales volumes for the third quarter were 14.5% higher than in the comparative period, with “a 50% increase in more profitable local production”.
Oceana said its African fishmeal and fish-oil production volumes were 28% higher than in Q3 2021. “Sales volumes year-to-date are now in line with the prior period, having recovered from the impact of lower opening inventory levels.”
Its US operations were also faring well, with the group saying third quarter gulf menhaden landings were 83% higher than the comparative period. Gulf menhaden is a small ocean fish.
Shapiro said the update was positive, showing Oceana was “selling fish and trading is up”.
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