Major UK companies line up 2017 for audit tenders

by Kevin Reed

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20 Jun 2014

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FOUR of the UK's biggest companies have outlined 2017 as the point at which they will put their audits out to tender.

Annual reports released this week by Johnson Matthey, Babcock International, Qinetiq and Big Yellow group have outlined 2017 as the most likely year in which they will tender their audit, as changes to UK and EU audit rules and regulations start to impact on audit committees' plans.

UK governance rules outline a ten-year tendering process, while the EU wants mandatory rotation during that period unless a tender is undertaken. Johnson Matthey, sustainable technologies producer, will tender in 2017.

Current auditor KPMG has been in situ since 1985, and would have until 2020 to tender. But with its audit engagement partner's five-year tenure ending on 1 April 2018, it will tender at the start of the partner's final year.

Engineering support services company Babcock International has used PwC as auditor since 2002 - its engagement partner also rotates out in 2017, the latest point at which Babcock will tender.

Qinetiq, the defence business, will tender in 2017 when the KPMG audit engagement partner steps down through rotation. KPMG has run the audit since Qinetiq was spun out of the MoD in 2001.

Storage group Big Yellow follows the same tack as the other companies, with Deloitte's audit engagement partner stepping down in 2017 as the point at which to tender.

Logistics management supplier Wincanton has outlined plans to tender its audit in 2016, when the KPMG audit engagement partner is rotated off the work.

One major audit did change hands this week: online gambling business 32Red has chosen KPMG to replace Grant Thornton as its auditor, following a tender process in February.

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