Colombias Superintendence of Companies (SuperSociedades), a governmental agency that monitors the operation of companies in the country, is investigating unicorn delivery startup Rappi S.A.S. for failing to comply with business ethics rules.
Photo: Two “Rappitenderos” on bike and motorcycle en route to their destination. (Credit: Rappi)
According to Supersociedades, it opened two statements of charges that are being investigated for alleged administrative responsibility of Rappi for non-compliance with provisions related to the regime of “Self-Control and Integral Risk Management, Suspicious Operations Reporting” (SAGRILAFT in Spanish) and the obligation of the correct implementation of a “Transparency and Business Ethics Program” (PTEE in Spanish).
In plain terms, this means that SuperSociedades is alleging that Rappi may not have adequate measures in place to manage risks against potential criminal conduct, including terrorist financing, bribery, or money laundering.
“Within the framework of the entity’s supervision policy, the provisions of the Commercial Law and the recommendations of intergovernmental organizations and entities, the Entity continues with the commitment to verify compliance with the guidelines regarding the self-control and integral risk management system, in order to prevent negative consequences for the country’s economy and for the companies, which may translate into operational, legal, reputational and contagion risks,” said Billy Escobar Pérez, head of SuperSociedades, in an agency statement.
Rappi faces a fine of up to $62,149 USD for the infractions.
The company replied by stating that these measures are already being implemented. “We received a visit and request for information from the SuperSociedades as part of the administrative visits made by this entity to companies subject to its surveillance, such as Rappi,” said the company in a statement. “This was attended in a rigorous manner and all the information requested by said authority was supplied.”
The company said that it hired a principal and alternate compliance officer and that such measures are in compliance. The company also clarified that these investigations are not related to suspicious activities, but are related to the company’s ability to prevent money coming in from illegal economies.
Rappi added that, “last May, we hired an expert team in regulatory compliance integrated by specialists in the field, which is dedicated exclusively to ensure that each process, procedure, and transaction is carried out in compliance with all legal and regulatory obligations.”
The firm added that it has incorporated internal and external audit processes.
This article was written by Santiago Ramírez Baquero.