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Party not over for WanDisco as data firm closes GM deal

WANdisco GM
Image credit: Linda Parton / Shutterstock

WANdisco has secured a more than $400,000 (£315,000) deal with automotive giant General Motors (GM) in a sign that the data firm is getting back into the groove after being hit by a fraud scandal.

The AIM-listed data company has been rocked by fraud investigations, suspended shares and an exodus of executives. However, after parachuting in high-profile tech executive Stephen Kelly as CEO, the company has closed a multi-project contract with the Cadillac owner.

The deal will see Sheffield and California-headquartered WANdisco handle the migration of large-scale data sets held by GM. The multiple phases of the deal could see the fee paid to WANdisco rise above the base £315,000.

The contract is a welcome success for the firm, which was thrust into controversy this year when the former chief executive and CFO made a “potentially fraudulent” discovery in the company accounts.

An internal investigation found that WANdisco’s revenue may have been overstated by about $15m and $115.4m in sales bookings was “false”. The irregularities were traced back to one senior salesperson.

Since then, the company’s shares were suspended from trading on the AIM market and an in-depth probe was launched by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The CEO and CFO resigned, but the company said this was unrelated to the fraud probe.

Trading of WANdisco shares resumed last month, albeit with a major drop in value of around 96% less than the value prior to the fraud investigation.

WANdisco brought Kelly, who previously ran Sage Group, in May to steady the ship.