Kyobo asks oversight board to punish Deloitte accountants

Kyobo Life Insurance said Friday it has requested the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (Pcaob) punish three accountants at Deloitte Anjin for colluding to inflate the price of a put option exercised by its investors.

Pcaob is a non-profit organization that regulates the audits of publicly traded companies to minimize risk.

The request was made amid a legal battle between Kyobo Life Insurance and Affinity Equity Partners over a put option it tried to exercise on the insurance company’s stocks in 2018.

Together with three other private equity firms in a consortium, Affinity Partners in 2012 acquired 24 percent of Kyobo Securities Insurance previously held by Daewoo International. The consortium tried to exercise a put option in 2015 when Kyobo Life Insurance failed to go public as it had promised.

The put option price was around 400,000 won ($330) apiece, but Kyobo Life Insurance rejected the price, saying it had been inflated. 

Deloitte Anjin was responsible for determining the put option price. 

The legal battle has put a brake on Kyobo Life Insurance’s initial public offering. The company hopes to complete the IPO in the first half of this year.


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