ICAEW council het up over international plans

ICAEW council meetings can be dull. They can also crackle with tension.

Often they’re a mixture of both.

Yesterday’s meeting was more of the ‘both’ variety. The dull stuff I won’t bore you with.

Crackling tension was delivered through a short but sharp discussion about the institute’s grand strategy for international expansion. Or should I say lack of it.

Initiated by council member Stephen Huyton, he bemoaned the lack of joined-up thinking about the institute’s strategy abroad.

His comments came as the ICAEW looks to establish a Greater China region.

Gripes from him and other members touched on a lack of technical advice available to members abroad from its regional offices, and what is the grand plan behind setting up offices outside of the UK.

From where I was sitting chief executive Michael Izza seemed distinctly unimpressed by the discussion, and batted off suggestions that there was a lack of clarity in where the institute was headed.

“We had three regional directors at our conference [earlier in the year],” responded Izza.

He said that December’s operational plan would provide more of an overview of how it was performing internationally.

But with council members such as Suwei Jiang and Ashish Dave expressing a keen interest in a tighter focus on international affairs from the ICAEW, it will be fascinating to see whether December’s update proves satisfactory.

On an entirely different and sadder note, the deaths of two former council members were announced in the meeting.

Accountancy Age expresses its deep condolences to the families of both Don Heady and Doug Llambias.

Heady served as a council member between 1981 and 1997, representing the South Essex Society.

Llambias was a well-known contributor to the profession, and was involved in brokering the merger between Neville Russell and Mazars & Guerard.

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