UPDATED — The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating allegations that Dow Chemical Co. chairman and CEO Andrew Liveris misused company funds for personal benefit, according to reports by Reuters and other news outlets.
Reuters is reporting that SEC issued subpoenas for thousands of pages of documents and testimony that were part of a whistleblower-retaliation lawsuit brought last year by a former Dow employee, Kimberly Wood.
An SEC spokesman said June 4 that the agency cannot confirm or deny the existence of an ongoing investigation.
Wood, a 25-year Dow employee who worked as an internal fraud investigator for the company, alleged Dow paid for Liveris family trips to the Super Bowl, World Cup, Masters Tournament and an African safari. She also alleged Dow was also “funneling money” to the Hellenic Initiative, a Greek charity Liveris co-founded, according to the Reuters report.
In a wrongful termination lawsuit, whistleblower Wood claimed she was fired in October 2013 after telling her supervisor she found “financial statement fraud” in an ethylene plant project. Dow and Wood settled the suit under confidential terms in February, according to Reuters.
Dow representatives denied any wrongdoing on June 5, saying the matter has long been closed.
"Reuters has simply recycled old allegations that the company made public long ago and addressed through independent review, enhanced audits, and improved controls. These matters were disclosed in 2011 by the filing of a publicly available proxy statement with the SEC. It is our understanding, however, that complaints such as the ones referenced in the article are, as a procedural matter, always forwarded to the SEC."