Toshiba: Accounting Fraud
(4 pages of text)
Case (Pub Mat)
In July 2015, the chief executive officer of Toshiba Corporation (Toshiba) resigned over the revelation of a JP¥151.8 billion accounting scandal that shocked the world. Toshiba, a Japanese multinational conglomerate with net sales of JP¥6.5 trillion and total assets of ¥6.2 trillion, had been widely criticized in the news for the multi-billion-dollar accounting fraud. The company’s stock prices declined by 38 per cent after the accounting probe was announced, and the company withdrew the dividend that had been declared earlier. These setbacks challenged company investors, who had always regarded Toshiba as a reputable company. The investors were wondering the same thing as everyone else watching the scandal unfold: How could a company with a 140-year history do this, and why? What were the consequences? What should Toshiba do in response to this crisis?
This case is appropriate for use at the undergraduate and graduate level. Students will have the opportunity to
- apply the fraud triangle theory to Toshiba in order to understand the motives, opportunities, and rationalizations behind the fraud;
- evaluate the financial performance of the company to understand the financial pressures that Toshiba might have been experiencing;
- examine the circumstances that allowed Toshiba’s fraudulent accounting practices to continue for so long;
- analyze the repercussions of the accounting fraud for the various stakeholders, especially the company’s investors; and
- understand how corporate culture can play a vital role in the failure of a management control system.
Information, Media & Telecommunications
Japan, Large, 2015
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