Shares in Steinhoff, which is listed in the Netherlands, plummeted nearly 60 per cent in early trading.
It came as chief executive Markus Joose resigned and the South African group delayed its full-year results.
"We're going to have to look very, very carefully and what comes out of the investigation and obviously, we are very keen to get information into the market as soon as possible".
Steinhoff's chairman, retail tycoon Christo Wiese, alongside former Pepkor CEO Pieter Erasmus, will run Steinhoff until a new CEO is appointed, a statement issued at 10.45pm on Tuesday night said. The company later said its chief financial officer remained in his position and there was no evidence to suggest he had any involvement in the matters being investigated.
"Steinhoff will update the market as the aforesaid investigation proceeds".
Steinhoff, which also said it was postponing the release of its 2017 results until the probe was over, has been under investigation for suspected accounting irregularities by the state prosecutor in Oldenburg, Germany since 2015.
African air travel growth spikes, outpacing strong global recovery
De Juniac urged governments to "raise their game" and do more to ensure infrastructure can cope with higher aviation demand. In September, global passenger demand had increased 6.6 percent from the previous month.
"The supervisory board of Steinhoff wishes to advise shareholders that new information has come to light today which relates to accounting irregularities requiring further investigation", the statement said.
PSG Financial Services advised shareholders on Wednesday that its board of directors received and accepted the resignation of Jooste as a non-executive director of PSG Group and PSG Financial Services, with immediate effect. "In addition, the Company will determine whether any prior years" financial statements will need to be restated'.
Steinhoff's African businesses include a range of credit-based household goods retailers and the company also has extensive interests in Europe, including German chain Poco and France's Conforama.
Steinhoff is a global giant with annual sales of more than €18 billion (and well over €1 billion in Australia).
Steinhoff spun off its Africa business earlier this year, but retains a majority stake in the firm.
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