ADM says employees received DOJ subpoenas amid probe over accounting practices

(Reuters) — Global grains merchant Archer-Daniels-Midland said on Tuesday some of its employees have received subpoenas from the Department of Justice amid an ongoing investigation over its accounting practices.

Shares of ADM rose almost 2% in premarket trading.

The investigations have brought more uncertainty to ADM’s high-margin nutrition segment, which has struggled to meet lofty revenue targets and faces slowing demand for meat alternatives and supply chain problems.

“The DOJ directed grand jury subpoenas to certain current and former company employees. The company is cooperating with the DOJ,” ADM said in a filing.

The company said the investigation covers the period between January 2018 and September 2023.

The company said the adjustments made to previous statements following the investigation have no impact on consolidated financial statements as a whole for any period as they were made to sales between business segments.

Touted by executives to be the future of ADM, the nutrition division, ADM’s smallest, had seen explosive growth until profits began to erode in late 2022.

ADM said the unit took a goodwill impairment charge of $137 million in 2023.

The world’s largest corn mill of global grain company Archer Daniels Midland in Decatur, Illinois. REUTERS/Karl Plume (Reuters / Reuters)

The company reported profit of $6.43 per share for the full year, after an investigation into accounting practices at the company’s nutrition division delayed the release of its financial results for nearly two months.

ADM had cut its 2023 profit forecast in January, pulled its forward-looking outlook for nutrition, announced an internal investigation and put finance chief Vikram Luthar on administrative leave.

ADM said it was implementing enhancements to its internal controls and putting in place a new enterprise resource planning system on a worldwide basis as part of a remediation plan.

(Reporting by Karl Plume in Chicago and Sourasis Bose in Bengaluru; Editing by Bill Berkrot and Shilpi Majumdar)