Abu Dhabi: The Registration Authority (RA) of Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) has sanctioned Baker Tilly Middle East Limited (Baker Tilly), an ADGM registered audit firm and, Neil Andrew Sturgeon (Sturgeon), Baker Tilly’s registered audit principal.

The RA imposed the following financial penalties for serious failings and gaps in the financial audit work carried out for two ADGM companies which led to non-compliance with the relevant ADGM requirements:

  • USD 50,000 against Baker Tilly; and
  • USD 12,500 against Sturgeon.

ADGM’s audit regulatory framework requires ADGM auditors to conduct audits and prepare audit reports in accordance with relevant professional standards, applicable regulations and the International Standards on Auditing (ISA).

During an inspection, the RA found significant failures to adhere to the ISA in the two audits carried out by Baker Tilly and Sturgeon. The breaches of ISA were identified in multiple areas of the audit process, from planning and execution to completion and reporting.

High-quality audit is vital for reinforcing trust in financial reporting which allows shareholders, investors, and other stakeholders to rely on financial statements to make informed decisions. The RA expects its registered auditors and audit principals to ensure that all audit work carried out by them is performed diligently, competently and in accordance with all relevant technical and professional standards.

The Registration Authority, notes, “One of the RA’s key regulatory objectives is to promote high-quality audit, which is an essential element of a strong financial and business ecosystem. High-quality audits directly contribute to the integrity of markets, provide investor protection and enable the promotion of businesses with confidence. A robust audit regime and monitoring program help ensure auditors do not fall short of the standards expected from them while also increasing the reliability of financial reporting. The RA will use all regulatory tools at its disposal from outreach to enforcement, as appropriate, to promote high standards of audit quality”.

To access a copy of the Decision Notices describing Baker Tilly and Sturgeon’s contraventions, click on the following links:

  • Baker Tilly Decision Notice
  • Sturgeon Decision Notice

About Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM)

Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) is the international financial centre (IFC) of the capital city of the United Arab Emirates, which opened for business on 21 October 2015. ADGM augments Abu Dhabi’s position as a leading financial centre and a business hub serving as a strategic link between the growing economies of the Middle East, Africa, South Asia and the rest of the world.

Operating within an international regulatory framework based on direct application of The English Common Law, ADGM governs the entire Al Maryah Island and Al Reem Island which is designated as the financial free zone of Abu Dhabi.

ADGM is ranked as one of the most preferred top IFCs in the Middle East and Africa region and named MENA’s largest Fintech hub. Its progressive and inclusive business ecosystem gravitates toward global financial and non-financial institutions while leveraging synergies between ADGM and multiple jurisdictions positioned as one of the world’s most advanced, diverse and progressively governed financial hubs.

For more details on ADGM, please visit www.adgm.com or follow us on Twitter and Instagram: @adglobalmarket and LinkedIn: @Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM)

For media queries please contact: 
Simon Hailes 
Managing Director Middle East  
Edelman Smithfield
E: simon.hailes@edelmansmithfield.com  

Kaja Mhisen
Corporate Communications, ADGM 
E: media@adgm.com