Polls differ on merger result

The ICAEW has claimed that its ‘consolidation roadshows’ are convincing
members that merger plans with CIPFA should go ahead, despite opposition polling
indicating that there is little support for the move.

As the institutes go into campaign overdrive ahead of formal votes in
October, Accountancy Age has seen ICAEW research that suggests that the majority
of members attending the roadshows who were initially unconvinced by the plans,
were swayed in favour after attending presentations.

But anti-merger campaigner Bruce Lawson said his own poll found only
4% in favour of merger.

The institute’s most recent polling, conducted in line with Market Research
Society guidance, shows 67% of the membership across all regions in favour.

Lawson called for ICAEW chief executive Eric Anstee to step down if members
voted against the proposals.

An ICAEW spokeswoman responded to calls for resignation by stating that
consolidation was an ‘accelerator to the institute’s strategy and not an end in
itself’, and ‘this position has the strong backing of the institute’s council’.

CIPFA is also holding a series of consolidation roadshows in September,
before its members vote in October.

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