Ahold will no longer be prosecuted for an American accounting scandal, as it has decided to settle for 297 million dollars (220 million euro).
Ever since the turn of the century, Ahold has been under continuous attack because of an extensive accounting scandal at its former subsidiary US Foodservice. That company presented a higher turnover than it had actually reached. US Foodservice was sold for 7 billion euro in 2007, but Ahold remained accountable for the court cases.
The retailer will pay the settlement by the end of the year or in the beginning of 2015 out of its own cash reserves. Around that time, a final approval of the agreement should be finalized and it should be clear by then whether the involved parties agree to the settlement. "In return, all parties will release their claims in relation to these pricing practices", the company stated in a press release.
Former Ahold CEO Cees van der Hoeven lost his job because of this scandal and he has been given a 30,000 euro fine. Former CFO Michiel Meurs received a 6 month suspended jail sentence, 240 hours of community service and a 100,000 euro fine. Former board member Jan Andreae received a 3 month suspended jail sentence and a 50,000 euro fine.