FacultyFaculty/Author Profile
Robert R. Sprague

Robert R. Sprague

Deloitte Financial Advisory Services LLP
Partner
Chicago, IL, USA


Robert is a partner in the Chicago Forensic Services practice of Deloitte Financial Advisory Services LLP where he is involved in a variety of financial consulting matters including the investigation of matters in connection with securities litigation and SEC enforcement matters, the investigation of various acts of fraud with a focus on fraudulent financial statements, providing litigation support work to clients in a variety of areas, and providing proactive compliance related work such as anti- corruption assessments across multiple industries. In addition, Robert has participated in audits of public and private companies in a variety of industries.

Robert returned to Deloitte Financial Advisory Services LLP in 2007 from the United States Securities and Exchange Commission where he was a staff accountant in the Enforcement Division of the Boston Regional Office of the SEC. At the SEC, Robert performed investigations of financial accounting matters where there have been potential violations of the securities laws. Robert is a certified public accountant and has been performing financial accounting and fraud investigations for more than twelve years.

Experience

  • Providing expert accounting and investigative skills to corporate entities either directly or through external counsel.
  • Assisted with a global investigation of various revenue recognition and other accounting matters at a large public technology company, which resulted in a restatement of approximately $150 million in revenues.
  • Led the investigation of inventory accounting issues at a Canadian and US Public Company that led to a multi-million dollar restatement.
  • Led a securities litigation matter involving software revenue recognition issues related to EITF 00-21 “Revenue Arrangements with Multiple Deliverables” and SOP 97-2 “Software Revenue Recognition” at a medium-sized technology Company, which resulted in a restatement of the Company’s historical financial statements.
  • Led an engagement for a multinational firm and issued accounting consultation related to the firm’s violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”).
  • Led engagements related to the investigation of potential FCPA and other possible corruption violations.
  • Assisted with leading an investigation of a large conglomerate’s accounting for billions of dollars of business combinations.
  • Assisted several Companies with their defense of various Class Action lawsuits resulting from allegations of accounting improprieties and inadequate financial statement disclosures.
  • Led several other significant engagements involving the investigation of potential acts of financial statement and financial statement disclosure fraud, including for public entities involved in United States Securities & Exchange Commission investigations.
  • Managed an engagement assisting external counsel with the defense of a U.S. Pharmaceutical Company in a securities class action matter involving allegations of improper accounting for product returns.
  • Performed multiple investigations into allegations and suspicion of inappropriate accounting and financial disclosure of employee stock based compensation.
  • Assisted with the defense of a large public accounting firm related to allegations that it did not perform appropriate procedures during its audit of various hedge funds.
  • Performed an investigation into a dispute related to a clawback in a hedge fund wind up.
  • Performed multiple engagements for clients and counsel related to post acquisition purchase price and contingent consideration disputes.
  • Performed multiple engagements related to neutral arbitrations.
  • Led engagements for clients in multiple industries related to assessing corporate compliance programs and enhancing compliance with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).
  • Served as a fraud specialist for several Deloitte & Touche LLP audit clients assisting audit engagement teams with their responsibilities under auditing standards for addressing potential fraud.
  • Participated in and managed engagements for the audit practice dealing with SEC reporting issues, mergers and acquisitions, multinational consolidation, accounting systems implementations, appropriateness of revenue recognition policies, stock compensation issues, development stage enterprise accounting issues, and internal control reviews and testing.
  • Performed financial statement audits and assisted with the preparation of financial statements ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements of the SEC and other authoritative bodies for bot public and private clients.

Professional Affiliations

  • Certified Public Accountant in Massachusetts and Illinois
  • Member, American Institute of Certified Public Accountants
  • Member, Massachusetts Society of Certified Public Accountants
  • Associate Member of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners

Education

  • Northeastern University Graduate School of Professional Accounting: MBA and MSA - 1995
  • Bates College: B.A. in Economics – 1992

Teaching Experience

  • Northeastern University School of Professional and Continuing Studies: Designed and delivered semester-long, post-graduate courses at Northeastern University entitled, “Investigative Accounting and Fraud Examination” and “Forensic Accounting Principles”

Speaking/Lecturing

  • Participated in teaching a course entitled “Designing Your Audit to Uncover Fraud” to the National Association of Black Accountants.
  • Designed and taught multiple courses on Financial Statement Fraud to audit professionals the Boston office of Deloitte & Touche.
  • Spoken at several local area colleges and universities presenting on financial statement fraud and forensic accounting.
  • Presented various topics at annual conferences for the Greater Boston and Greater New Hampshire Area Chapters of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners.
  • Designed and delivered a course on SEC Enforcement activities at the Annual CPA In Service training for the FBI.
  • Spoken at multiple Executive Enterprise Institute conferences while with the SEC.
  • Spoken at multiple Practicing Law Institute conferences on topics related to forensic accounting and corporate compliance.
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