Mazars chief: big firms will change

Patrick de Cambourg, Mazars

Patrick de Cambourg, Mazars

The profession’s biggest firms will move away from the network model towards
more integrated businesses ­ or very loose associations, according to Mazars
president Patrick de Cambourg.

In an interview in this week’s
Accountancy Age, he said that the level of accountability accounting
networks can offer is ‘possibly not sufficient’ and that full integration would
be the answer for some of them while others would operate within much looser
associations.

‘The profession will move towards more integration for some players and move
towards alliances for the rest,’ said de Cambourg.

BDO International, Deloitte and Grant Thornton are battling litigation aimed
at establishing links between their umbrella network and individual firms.

Global firms operating under single branding then claiming that member firms
are independent was a model that cannot continue, as ‘people are led to believe
there’s more than that, so the profession has to think to consider the way
forward for more accountability, transparency and possibly innovation’, said de
Cambourg.

But he defended firms facing huge litigation claims, saying that the market
cannot survive with fewer major players and limiting liability must remain an
area of discussion between governments, stakeholders, auditors and their
clients.

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