Walmart adds compliance, audit expertise to board

The addition of retired KPMG International chairman Timothy Flynn to the Walmart board gives the retailer some compliance expertise amid ongoing investigations into alleged violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

Flynn, 55, becomes the seventeenth member of the Walmart board and will also serve on the board’s audit committee, the committee charged with oversight of the FCPA investigations. He brings considerable compliance and audit expertise to Walmart having spent the past 32 years at KPMG International. He served as the company’s international chairman since 2007 and retired last October. In his role as chairman, Flynn directed a global executive team responsible for the firm's management and operations, and managed a global board of senior partners responsible for the strategy, oversight and governance of the global network, according to Walmart. He also served as chairman from 2005 to 2010 and chief executive officer from 2005 to 2008 of KPMG LLP, the U.S. and largest member firm of KPMG International.

Flynn holds a bachelors degree in accounting from the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, Minn., and is a member of its board of trustees. He currently serves as a member of the board of directors of JPMorgan Chase & Co. He has previously served as a trustee of the Financial Accounting Standards Board, a member of the World Economic Forum's International Business Council, and was a founding member of The Prince of Wales' International Integrated Reporting Committee.

Commenting on the appointment, Walmart chairman Rob Walton, didn’t mention allegations of bribery in Mexico and the company’s ongoing investigation, but Flynn’s appointment hardly seems like a coincidence given his extensive international experience and compliance background.

"Throughout his career, Tim has demonstrated a level of professionalism and personal integrity that is synonymous with our values at Walmart,” Walton said. “He's a talented leader whose global insights, strategic vision and expertise in business strategy and governance will be a valuable addition to our company. I look forward to working with Tim and seeing the significant contributions we know he will make.”

Flynn added, "I have admired Walmart for years and have a deep appreciation for the principles and values of Sam Walton that still guide the company today. Not only does Walmart have a strong and successful business model, it is also making a major impact by addressing social issues like environmental sustainability and access to healthier food. I am honored to become a part of all this and to see where I can uniquely make a difference.”