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Global Software Giant Paid Bribes to Get Business in South Africa

SAP has agreed to pay more than $220m to settle bribery charges involving government officials around the world. The money and gifts, typically routed via outside business consultants, were intended to help win business in South Africa, Indonesia and elsewhere, according to US officials. The schemes allegedly operated from at least December 2014 until January 2022. SAP said it had cooperated with investigators and overhauled policies. SAP, which is headquartered in Germany and has shares listed in the US, is among the world’s largest software companies. According to US court documents, subsidiaries of the firm in operating in five countries in Africa, Azerbaijan and Indonesia engaged in bribery schemes, “repeatedly” breaking company policies that were intended to guard against corruption. In South Africa, it allegedly paid millions in fees to consultants, despite no work being performed, and funded trips to New York for government officials, including golf outings.