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Nobody Won

In: Business and Management

Submitted By ropincb
Words 2701
Pages 11
Nobody Won
Michelle L Brown
Oklahoma Wesleyan University

When the Arthur Andersen LLP/Enron scandal surfaced in 2001, there was much confusion as to whom committed what crime and how many employees were actually involved. After the facts and criminal charges were final, the sequence of events makes sense; the union of two companies, the rise of the participating executives, and finally the end of the money ride. The leaders of both companies used dishonesty to make an abundant amount of money and gain power status (Thomas 2002). Christopher Bergland said it best when he wrote, “Karma is a boomerang and the long-term shame and anxiety of cheating will ultimately negate the short-term gains of victory,” (Bergland, 2012). This definitely held true for the employees who were disgraced at the conclusion of the legal proceedings; they may have had more money than they needed, but they ultimately lost in the end.

The Beginning
The joining between Arthur Andersen LLP and Enron was a marriage too good to be true (Thomas, 2002). The relationship started in 1986 when Enron hired the accounting firm Arthur Andersen LLP to perform “creative accounting,” allowing the energy company to appear more powerful on paper than it really was (Investopedia, 2011). Enron Corporation started investing massive amounts of money in “Special Purpose Entities” to generate huge amounts of revenues. Special Purpose Entities are creative ways for companies to more efficiently raise debt, but they also make it tougher for investors to decipher a company's actual debt exposure (Byrne, 2002).
Company Backgrounds Both companies were built on determination, dedication, and hard work. The founder, Arthur Andersen, who was orphaned at the age of 16, worked as a mailboy during the day and attended school at night. By the age of 23, he became the youngest CPA in Illinois. A mere five…...

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