(Reuters) - The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday accused a former SAP SE (SAPG.DE) executive and three others of insider trading based on a tip he supplied about an impending merger.
The SEC alleged that Christopher Salis, then a global vice president at the software company’s SAP America unit, received thousands of dollars in kickbacks for tipping off a friend ahead of its acquisition of Concur Technologies in 2014.
In a lawsuit filed in federal court in Hammond, Indiana, the SEC said Salis’ friend, Douglas Miller, then told his brother, Edward Miller, and a mutual friend, Barrett Biehel. They then made trades before the merger’s announcement.
The SEC also said Salis, 39, in 2007 told Douglas Miller, who co-owns a cash wash in Indiana with his brother, to non-public information in advance of a tender offer by SAP for Business Objects, Salis’ then-employer.
The tips resulted in more than $545,000 in trading profits for Douglas Miller, his family, Biehel and another friend, the SEC said.
Kickbacks to Salis included at least $10,400 in cash, the agency said. A startup company he owned later received approximately $80,000 from Miller and his family, the SEC said.
SAP, in a statement, said Salis left the company in October 2015. SAP said it has cooperated fully in the investigation and was not a target.
Lawyers for Salis and Biehel did not respond to requests for comment. Thomas Kirsch, a lawyer for the Millers, said his clients had not committed any insider trading and looked forward to their day in court.
The case is Securities and Exchange Commission v. Salis et al, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, No. 16-00231.
Reporting by Nate Raymond in New York and Mohammad Zargham in Washington; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe and Dan Grebler