Two directors have resigned from Wirecard New Zealand, but a spokesman says it is "business as usual" at the local branch as investigations continue overseas into alleged accounting irregularities in Singapore.
German-listed Wirecard, a global payments company, has been in turmoil after the Financial Times revealed that a preliminary internal probe by law firm Rajah & Tann had found evidence of forgery and fraud.
This week Wirecard suspended one accounting employee in Singapore after police opened inquiries last month. Chief executive Markus Braun said the move was standard procedure, while the company has rejected the allegations.
A spokesman for Wirecard New Zealand, which runs on office of about 20 staff in Auckland, said it was business as usual for the local branch and referred further comment to the global company's statement on its website.
Wirecard's statement refutes the claims and says it's working closely with the Singapore police to resolve the situation.
The company's share price tumbled 42 per cent in the week after the Financial Times report was published at the end of January, before German regulator BaFin stepped in to stop investors short selling the stock.
According to the FT and other media reports, police are probing many firms, including Matrimonial Global and Flexi Flex, to which Wirecard entities in Hong Kong, Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia allegedly issued backdated sales agreements.
Singapore is the headquarters for Wirecard in Asia. It is also where it is attempting to complete a deal that would see it take over the payment responsibilities for 20,000 merchants in 11 countries stretching from India to New Zealand.
Wirecard New Zealand has three directors – Singapore-based Jeffry Ho and Fook Sun Ng, and New Zealand based John Nicholson.
Two other directors – Andreas Kazamias from Cyprus and Arne Matthias of Singapore – resigned on February 28.
Wirecard New Zealand has yet to make public financial statements for the December 2018 year.
Latest available accounts on the Companies Office show the company made a small loss of $1.26m for the year to December 2017, compared to a profit of $1.29m the previous year.
Revenue was flat at $13.26m.
A spokeswoman for Grant Thornton, which audited the accounts, said the firm could not make any comment on the investigations at this stage.
Wirecard was founded in the late 1990s and then expanded through acquisitions, initially in Eastern Europe and then in Asia.
It established a foothold in Australia and New Zealand by buying Auckland-based payment company GFG Group in 2014.