Mike Ashley’s Frasers Group has delayed its annual results presentation for the second year running saying it needs more time to complete its accounts.
Frasers, which was due to release its full-year figures on Thursday 13 August, said the results would now be published on 20 August as disclosures relating to new accounting rules were “completed and reviewed”.
In a statement released to the City after the market closed on Tuesday, Frasers said the delay was not linked to any “significant matters” beyond completion of “normal audit procedures”.
“Due to the undoubted scrutiny of our accounts, management and our auditors RSM will take this extra week to robustly review the final accounts and ensure that all necessary disclosures have been completed,” the company said.
“For the avoidance of doubt we can confirm there are no significant matters to address outside of normal audit completion procedures and the final accounts disclosure review.”
Last year, Ashley’s retail group – then named Sports Direct – was labelled “an embarrassment to UK corporate governance” after the chaotic announcement of its annual results, including multiple delays and the shock revelation of a €674m (£614m) Belgian tax bill.
The 2019 results were first delayed by just over a week and then released more than 10 hours late, once the market had closed on a Friday evening, after multiple delays during the day.
The company’s auditor at the time, Grant Thornton, resigned in the wake of the shambles. It then took months to find a replacement – RSM. Ashley was forced to send a letter to the then business secretary, Andrea Leadsom, explaining the difficulties in finding a suitable adviser to check the firm’s annual accounts.
This year analysts had expected Frasers to release its figures around 16 July but no announcement of a date was made until the end of last month, when it scheduled them for 13 August.