Wednesday July 15, 2020

Lessons for corporate Germany in the rise and fall of Wirecard

The self-righteous attitude of supporters of the electronics payment firm — including the press — as well as the business elite’s prickliness about outside scrutiny combined to produce a very German failure

28th June, 2020
Markus Braun, Wirecard’s chief executive was arrested last Monday on suspicion of false accounting and market manipulation, and released on €5 million bail.

Whenever a company collapses, leaving investors nursing losses and regulators nursing red faces, the cry goes up: Lessons must be learned! Something must be done! It was said after Enron, and Parmalat, and Anglo Irish Bank, and Lehman Brothers, to name just four recent instances of corporate misadventure.

So when Wirecard, a German company that few outside the esoteric business of electronic payments had heard of until a few days ago, sank into insolvency last...

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