Update: June 2020
EY announced €1.9bn of cash missing, CEO arrested, Wirecard AG filed for insolvency
December 9, 2019
We originally reported on the relationship between Ocap/Senjo and Wirecard, and Ocap’s sudden launch of an MCA business in September; read our earlier piece here. Following our report, Wirecard management told analysts and investors that they had no relationship with Ocap and that there had been no relationship with Carlos Haeuser since January 2018. The accounts show a different story.
In November 2018, Ocap received an unsecured, euro-denominated €115.6M loan from an undisclosed party, which they managed to lend out entirely by year-end. Wirecard’s 2018 annual report states, when referring to merchant cash advance, “a volume of €115.6M was already earmarked for this purpose by powerful financing partners”. The newly filed WDAH reports show that Wirecard Asia borrowed from Wirecard Group in order to make an onward loan of €115.6M. A euro-denominated loan made in Singapore of the exact same amount as that received by a company with strong ties to Wirecard strongly suggests this is a loan to Ocap, contrary to management’s claims.
This report indicates that Wirecard has been untruthful in their communication with investors about a material transaction of >€100M.
Wirecard has misled investors about who this money was lent to, and they failed to disclose the fact that the loan appears to be a related-party transaction:
The Ocap CEO, Carlos Haeuser, was not only a long-standing executive of Wirecard, but his wife, Brigitte Axtner Haeuser is Head of Digital Sales for Wirecard and a named director of WDAH in Singapore in the 2018 annual report. In addition, Ocap/Senjo is an important client for Wirecard: in the Wirecard internal documents released by the FT, it is shown as the second largest customer of CardSystems Middle East (CME), Wirecard’s most profitable subsidiary.
It is also concerning that, within six weeks of making the loan, Wirecard made a €5M allowance for a potential loss. This stands out as an unusual allocation, particularly bearing in mind the relationship between Ocap and Wirecard directors. If Brigitte saw Ocap as such a credit risk, should WDAH have sanctioned lending the €115M to Ocap?
The loan was extended following the balance sheet date, with partial repayment of the loan extended until 2020. This would suggest the business is not doing as well as hoped. Were these late 4Q transactions an avenue to circulate money to CME and pay down the aged Senjo receivables referred to by the FT?
Sources: Ocap Management, Wirecard Group, FT
WDAH 2018 gross revenues of SGD$208M grew 64% YoY from SGD$127M in 2017. However, interchange, network, and transition service fees grew faster, meaning net revenues fell 8% YoY, from SGD$12.6M to SGD$11.6M. This substantial margin erosion should be alarming for investors, especially considering the positive commentary from management about the Citi portfolio.
|Interchange, network & transition fees||–||(114,568)||(196,481)|
|Loss from operations||(4,542)||(14,186)||(37,797)|
The Citi portfolio in Singapore was acquired in June 2017, which suggests that 2018 organic gross revenues are flat to down YoY. This suggests that Wirecard is experiencing customer losses since the acquisition. Certainly, there’s evidence of this such as Adyen’s public announcement that they won Singapore Airlines.
Despite the deteriorating financial performance, management took the decision not to impair the SGD$95M of goodwill. We would note that the 4.57% discount rate used by management when performing the impairment test fell from 5.5% in 2017, a significant red flag as it inflates the DCF value, all else being equal. It would be interesting to see how they justified this fall in the discount rate to their auditors given the declining organic revenue with deteriorating gross margins, increased cash burn, a police investigation into potential accounting fraud and money laundering, a €115M loan to a firm associated with the director’s husband, and a CFO who reportedly fled the country.
Above we mention Wirecard’s specific denials to analysts and investors about their relationship with Ocap. We are happy to share more details with regulators if requested.
|Wirecard Brazil (€M)||Our|
|Company Reported MCA||400||400|
|Brazil % Estimate||40%|
|Brazil MCA Estimate||160||160|
|Monthly Credit Volume||37.2||37.2|
|Calculated MCA Balance||18.6||18.6|