Big fine for KPMG

KPMG has been fined £13 million and ordered to pay £2.75 million in costs over serious misconduct during the sale of bedmaker Silentnight to private equity firm HIG. The firm also received a severe reprimand and ordered to appoint an independent reviewer to conduct a root cause review.

Former partner David Costley-Wood was fined £500,000, severely reprimanded and excluded from holding an insolvency licence.

The Financial Reporting Council sanctions follow a referral from the Pensions Regulator. The tribunal described KPMG’s involvement with Silentnight as ‘deeply troubling’, as it failed to act solely in its client’s interests. It concluded that the lack of objectivity went to the core of the relationship between Silentnight and KPMG.