Software AG has launched an internal review following reports today that the German software company might have agreed to pay kickbacks in the form of sales commissions to Gupta-linked companies and individuals.
This is the second German software company that has been implicated in the so-called Gupta Leaks mails, and reported by the AmaBhungane Centre of Investigative Journalism and the Daily Maverick’s investigation arm Scorpio.
The latest reports indicate that Sofware AG may have entered into an agreement with Gupta-linked Global Softech Solutions (GSS) to pay up to 35% of the value of deals with Transnet Freiight Rail, the Department of Correctional Services, Mangaung Municipality, Sasol and MultiChoice.
Byung-Hun Park, senior vice-president: global corporate communications and marketing at Software AG in Germany, sent IT-Online the following statement: “Software AG is not aware of any non-compliant business practices in its South Africa operations.
“Based on current media speculations, the company has started an internal review.
“Please understand that Software AG cannot make further comment until this review has been completed.”
Software AG has a long-standing relationship with Ekurhuleni Municipality, and has successfully implemented a number of systems, including software modernisation.
According to the AmaBhungane report, it was an attempt to replicate some of these systems in Mangaung Municipality that might have started the chain of events.
Emails apparently indicate that GSS, soon to be 50% owned by Sahara Systems, budgeted slightly over R100-million in “referral” or “sales assist” fees for securing the Mangaung and other contacts for Software AG.
GSS, in the meantime, seems to have signed an agreement to pay a finder’s fee to Sensational Signs, owned by Mohamed Mobeen Jeena, who shares a surname with Software AG sales director Riaaz Jeena.