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KPMG appoints Brexit chief as clients scramble for help

Karen Briggs KPMG

ONE OF KPMG’s most senior partners must grasp the nettle of Brexit, as the firm looks to set governance and processes in place to deal with the ramifications of the UK’s EU referendum vote.

Karen Briggs, who has worked on large scale and complex international regulatory issues for KPMG, will be its head of Brexit.

“We have pulled together experts from across the firm to provide the help and guidance our clients need and have appointed one of our most senior partners to our executive committee to lead the charge,” said UK chairman Simon Collins.

Yesterday, it was revealed that the Civil Service had turned to the Big Four and consultants to help build up knowledge and manpower to manage Brexit.

Briggs said that the firm has been advising clients to consider “the next two weeks, two months and two years to assess the path ahead”.

She will build a team to help provide client support for the risks and opportunities ahead, while helping them maintain “business as usual”.

“Predatory intentions”

Some concern to UK businesses will be that the firm has seen “predatory intentions” from other European nations considering the competitive advantage they might have from Brexit. Briggs also noted that “half a dozen” deals KPMG was working on have now been put on hold.

“Whether this is a short-term wobble or has more lasting ramifications remains to be seen at this stage,” Briggs added.

KPMG’s response to the EU referendum has been led by Melanie Richards, the firm’s vice chair, who will continue to provide strategic counsel to Briggs.

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