Fortress: Special Subcommittee confirms PwC investigation making solid progress; due for completion around the end of April

Johannesburg, 4 April 2019 – The Subcommittee of the Board of directors of Fortress REIT Ltd (JSE: FFA and FFB), which was set up on September 6 last year to review allegations made against the company and certain past and current directors, is making solid progress in delivering on its mandated scope of work.

A number of asset managers had, on August 8, called for a forensic investigation into certain claims made in various reports about Fortress and other companies in which Fortress is or was invested.

Following this, the Subcommittee engaged with those asset managers to properly define their concerns and to frame a scope of work. The Subcommittee then appointed PwC to assist in a comprehensive review of these concerns, which review was broken into two parts: allegations of market manipulation and insider trading; and allegations of conflicts of interest and undue related-party benefits associated with historic property transactions.

While the Subcommittee had initially targeted the end of March as the deadline for PwC to complete its investigation and compile its report to the Fortress Board, it is now expected this will be completed around the end of April.

Once the PwC report is made available, the Subcommittee will then be in a position to consider its findings and make recommendations to the full Board of Fortress.

Fortress has already ensured the full co-operation of all current directors and employees in the proceedings of the Subcommittee.

Robin Lockhart-Ross, the Subcommittee Chairman, says while PwC has substantially completed the workstreams as detailed in the scope of work and the Subcommittee is satisfied with progress made, it has been agreed to allow PwC further time in order to give all parties an opportunity for further engagement, review and comment before the report is finalised.

“As communicated to shareholders, it is the stated intention of the Fortress Board to make public the outcome of the Subcommittee’s investigation, as informed by PwC’s review and report, and as considered appropriate by the Fortress Board,” concludes Lockhart-Ross.