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Gartner pays SEC $2.45 million to settle South Africa FCPA offenses

American technology and consulting company Gartner, Inc. agreed Friday to pay the SEC $2.45 million to settle charges that it violated the FCPA by bribing officials at the South Africa Revenue Service.

The SEC charged Connecticut-based Gartner in an administrative order with violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery, books and records, and internal accounting controls provisions.

The company settled without admitting or denying the SEC’s findings. It agreed to pay a civil penalty of $1.6 million and $857,000 in disgorgement and pre-judgment interest.

A manager of Gartner’s consulting business authorized the company to subcontract with a private South African consulting company. The manager knew or should have known the private company would pay all or part of the money it received from Gartner to government officials to help Gartner win sole-source contracts from the South Africa Revenue Service, the SEC said.

During the same period, Gartner’s internal FCPA risk assessments identified the intermediary’s relationships with public-sector clients as a potential “bribery red flag.”

When Gartner entered into the engagement with the South Africa Revenue Service, it lacked risk-based screening procedures for hiring third-party contractors, had no anti-corruption related vendor onboarding procedures, and lacked adequate monitoring procedures, the SEC said Friday.

The SEC said it took into account Gartner’s self-disclosure following press reports in South Africa, cooperation, and remedial efforts, including making foreign-based employees available for interviews in the United States and encouraging cooperation by former employees.

Gartner is the fourth FCPA settlement involving South Africa. The others were ABB in 2022, Alere in 2017, and Hitachi in 2015.

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