The case “Corporate Governance Failure at Ricoh India: Rebuilding Lost Trust” discusses the series of events post disclosure of falsification of the accounts and violation of accounting principles, leading to a loss of INR 11.23bn for the company, eroding over 75 per cent of its market cap (Financial Express, 2016). The case provides an opportunity for students to understand the key components of corporate governance structure and consequences of poor corporate governance. The case highlights the responsibility of the board of directors, audit committee and external auditors and discusses the changes required in the corporate governance structure necessary to ensure that such incidents do not take place. The case also delves into the classic dilemma of degree of control that needs to be exercised by the parent over its subsidiaries and freedom of independence given to the subsidiary board, which is a constant challenge all multinationals face. Such a dilemma often leads to the challenge of creating appropriate corporate governance structures for numerous subsidiaries.
The case is intended for MBA courses on corporate governance, business ethics and also for the strategic management courses in the context of multinational corporations. The case can be used to develop an understanding of the essential of corporate governance with special focus on the role of the board of directors, audit committee and external auditors. The case highlights the consequences and cost of poor corporate governance. The case can also be used for highlighting governance challenges in the parent subsidiary relationship for multinational corporations. The case can be used for executive training purposes on corporate governance and leadership with special focus on business ethics.
This case presents the challenges faced by the newly appointed Chairman Noboru Akahane of Ricoh India. In July 2016, Ricoh India, the Indian arm of Japanese firm Ricoh, admitted that the company’s accounts had been falsified and accounting principles violated, leading to a loss of INR 11.23 bn for the financial year 2016. The minority shareholders were agitating against the board of directors of Ricoh India and were also holding the parent company responsible for not safeguarding their interest. Over a period of 18 months, Ricoh India had been in the eye of a storm that involved delayed reporting of financials, auditor red flags regarding accounting irregularities, a forensic audit, suspension of top officials and a police complaint lodged by Ricoh India against its own officials. Akahane needed to ensure continuity of Ricoh India’s business and also act quickly and decisively to manage the crisis and ensure that these incidents did not recur in the future.
Expected learning outcomes
The case provides an opportunity for students to understand the key components of corporate governance structure and consequences of poor corporate governance. More specifically, the case addresses the following objectives: provide an overview of corporate governance structure; highlight the role of board of directors, audit committee and external auditors; appreciate the rationale behind mandatory auditor rotation; appreciate the consequences of poor corporate structure; explore the interrelationship between sustainability reporting and transparency in financial disclosures of a corporation; understand management and governance of subsidiaries by multinational companies; and understand the response to a crisis situation.
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CSS 11: Strategy.
Disclaimer. This case is written solely for educational purposes and is not intended to represent successful or unsuccessful managerial decision-making. The authors may have disguised names; financial and other recognizable information to protect confidentiality.
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