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Former PwC Australia CEO will step down over document scandal

Tom Seymour announced his retirement plans a week after resigning after a scandal over leaked tax data, with an independent probe already underway.

Former PwC Australia CEO will step down over document scandal

According to a statement issued by PwC Australia today, May 15, former CEO Tom Seymour will retire as a partner on September 30.

Seymour resigned on Monday after confessing to being a part of emails in which recipients saw classified government information on tax evasion law revisions.

According to PwC, former Telstra and Optus CEO Ziggy Switowski will now oversee an independent investigation into the information leak and report his findings and recommendations in September.

Interim CEO Kristin Stubbins stated that Switowski will be able to undertake a "rigorous and robust review" since he will have access to the essential individuals and information.

“We are committed to learning from our mistakes and ensuring that we embrace the high standards of governance, culture and accountability that our people, clients and external stakeholders rightly expect.

“We look forward to receiving his report and acting swiftly on its recommendations,” Stubbins added.

Seymour admitted obtaining information from Peter-John Collins, the firm's former head of international tax, who was barred from the tax business by Australia's Tax Practitioners Board in January.

Collins has been accused of disclosing secret information from talks with Treasury officials about new tax avoidance regulations to several PwC colleagues. According to emails revealed by the Australian Senate on May 7, this information was leveraged to win new contracts.

The controversy has cost the firm three key figures: partners Pete Calleja and Sean Gregory resigned from the executive board on Wednesday, May 10, according to the Australian Financial Review.


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