(Bloomberg) Toshiba Corp. named two lawyers and two certified public accountants to a third-party committee that is expanding an investigation started by an internal probe last month over accounting practices.
Koichi Ueda, a former investigator with Tokyo District Public Prosecutor’s Office, will head the committee, Toshiba said in a statement on Friday. Hideki Matsui, a partner at Marunouchi Sogo Law Office, was also named to the panel.
The industrial and electronics group gave a breakdown for the estimated effect on earnings from accounting irregularities. Profit on four social infrastructure projects will probably be affected by 30 billion yen ($250 million), according to the statement. One community solutions project will take a 14 billion yen hit and four power system contracts will see a 6 billion yen impact.
“Of the nine projects uncovered so far in the probe, most were domestic,” President Hisao Tanaka told reporters in Tokyo on Friday. He declined to give further details of the investigation.
The company on May 8 withdrew its earnings forecasts and canceled the year-end dividend citing irregularities related to “percentage of completion” estimates used on infrastructure projects. The stock plunged the most since March 2011, before rebounding after Toshiba said a profit writedown over the previous three years will be 50 billion yen.
The company may pay a year-end dividend, depending on earnings results for the year ended March, Tanaka said.
The stock fell 3.5 percent to close at 411.60 yen in Tokyo on Friday, before the committee members were announced. The profit reduction would amount to about 7 percent of the 695 billion yen in combined operating income for the three years.
The May 8 announcement had prompted at least seven analysts to suspend their ratings amid uncertainty about the probe’s scope.
The company, which also makes chips and personal computers, has said it is examining accounting at units for nuclear, hydroelectric and wind power equipment, air-traffic control and railway systems.
The accounting method often leads to small adjustments, and it has also been behind high-profile scandals at companies including Japan’s IHI Corp., where the chairman resigned and the company paid a then-record regulatory fine.
Shipbuilders, labor outsourcing providers and software makers use “percentage of completion” accounting for their long-term contracts. Changing the total estimated cost to a smaller number increases the percentage of work completed so higher revenue and profit can be booked.
Toshiba had previously projected operating income of 330 billion yen on sales of 6.7 trillion yen in the year ended March. The estimate of a 50 billion yen reduction in profit applies to the three fiscal years ending in March 2014. The company gave no estimate for the year ended this March.
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