Time Warner To Pay SEC Charges

    March 21, 2005

Time Warner has agreed to pay a $300 million settlement stemming from charges the company faced for incorrectly stating online advertising revenues and the number of subscribers to their Internet service.

According to CNet, the agreement to pay does not come with an admittance or denial of guilt. Time Warner has agreed to restate their earnings over the time period in question (from the fourth quarter of 2000 to 2002). CNet’s article also reveals:

The SEC order requires Time Warner to comply with a cease-and-desist order issued in May 2000. Time Warner also agreed to hire an independent investigator to determine whether its historical accounting for certain transactions adhered to standard accounting principles.

Separately, the SEC charged company CFO Wayne H. Pace, Controller James W. Barge and Deputy Controller Pascal Desroches with “causing violations of the reporting provisions of the federal securities laws.” According to the SEC, they have consented, without admitting or denying the allegations, to a cease-and-desist order stating they caused reporting violations by the company “based on their roles in accounting for $400 million paid to the company by Bertelsmann AG in two sets of transactions.”

Time Warner did not issue any comments concerning the decision.

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