German GfK seeks Turkish support for branch probe

German GfK seeks Turkish support for branch probe

German GfK seeks Turkish support for branch probe

Head office of the GfK market research group in Nuremberg, Germany. The group has announced that its Turkish branch might be involved in fraud.

German market research group GfK has said the former management team of its Turkish branch might have been involved in a tax and social security dues fraud that resulted in damages of 21 million euros.

“GfK has discovered incidents of suspected tax evasion in its Turkish subsidiary. Initial findings indicate that former local management in Turkey collaborated to defraud GfK through tax and social security avoidance schemes over several years,” GfK’s Turkish subsidiary, GfK Araştırma Hizmetleri A.Ş., said in a statement to the Hürriyet Daily News.

GfK has “voluntarily self-reported” the matter to Turkish authorities, said the statement, which was signed by Bernhard Wolf from Investor Relations. “The total expected costs are approximately 21 million euros. The GfK Group is taking a one-off provision of approximately 21 million euros related to irregularities. The provision will be booked in the financial year 2012,” the statement said yesterday.

“GfK will be working with local authorities in Turkey regarding the issue and will explore potential criminal and civil charges against the former Turkish management team and other responsible persons,” said the statement.

The GfK Araştırma Hizmetleri A.Ş. also told the Daily News that there was no legal investigation into GfK on this issue.

In 2011, GfK’s sales amounted to 1.37 billion euros. The company employs more than 12,000 people in over 100 countries. GfK’s Turkey branch, established in 1987, employs more than 200 full-time employees.

GfK Türkiye offers fact-based consultancy to companies, providing data collection and insightful reporting that enables its clients to shape their business and marketing strategies. From customer satisfaction to employee satisfaction, brand-image surveys to medical research, GfK Türkiye develops models using qualitative and quantitative information.