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World Bank blacklists Wipro

After Satyam’s fall from grace follow revelations of the World Bank banning India’s third largest software services firm, Wipro, for following corrupt practices to bag deals, reports HT Correspondent.

business Updated: Jan 13, 2009 00:28 IST
HT Correspondent

Indian firms not alone

The UK tops list of firms and individuals debarred by World Bank from contracts financed by it.

Thirty-seven UK firms and individuals are among 111 entities banned by the bank for varying periods

Indonesia follows with 18 firms & individuals. There are 10 firms from the US, five from Russia. Only one firm each from Germany and South Korea

Most companies have been banned under a clause that deals with fraudulent practice.

After Satyam’s fall from grace follow revelations of the World Bank banning India’s third largest software services firm, Wipro, for following corrupt practices to bag deals.

Wipro had not disclosed the four-year ban imposed on it in July 2007 to investors. Its statement on Monday tailed the World Bank’s decision on Sunday to make public the names of all companies and individuals barred from being awarded contracts financed by it for various periods.

The bank said Wipro was one of the six companies and individuals “debarred along with their affiliates under the Bank Group’s corporate procurement programme”.

It said Wipro had “provided improper benefits to Bank staff” — which was one of the reasons cited for imposing a similar ban on Satyam Computer Services for eight years. The other reason given for banning Satyam was that it had failed to maintain documentation to support fees charged for its sub-contractors.

It said Wipro had “provided improper benefits to Bank staff” — which was one of the reasons cited for imposing a similar ban on Satyam for eight years. The other reason given for banning Satyam was that it had failed to maintain documentation to support fees charged for its sub-contractors.

Wipro said the charge is related to allotment of 1,750 shares worth about $72,000 to employees of the World Bank in the company’s maiden offer of American depository shares (ADS) in 2000 at the issue price. “Wipro representatives offered the World Bank, through its chief information officer and a senior staff, participation in the (ADS) programme and they directed this offer to members of their family and friends,” the company said in a statement. “All participants in the programme signed a conflict of interest statement that their purchase did not violate any ethics or conflict of interest policies of their company.” Wipro further said “to date, Wipro’s revenue from World Bank is insignificant. Our inability to get future business from World Bank will not adversely affect our business and results of operations.”

The other four Indian entities barred by the World Bank are Megasoft Ltd, a product-based technology company also based in Hyderabad, Nestor Pharmaceuticals, Gap International and an individual, Surendra Singh.

Megasoft said it had had no business from World Bank since 2004 and hence, there was no financial impact on the company due to the ban.