PwC denies Deloitte’s reputational boast

Ian Powell, PwC chairman

Ian Powell: Deloitte’s claims are ‘pretty difficult to prove’

claims that it has overhauled its rivals in terms of reputation have been
shrugged off by the new head of PricewaterhouseCoopers as ‘pretty difficult to

In an interview with Accountancy Age, Ian Powell, elected in April
to lead PwC in the UK, said:
‘There are a lot of comments that are pretty easy to say and pretty difficult to
prove. If you look at the relationships we have with our clients, the
competitive nature of the marketplace, and the wins we have in that marketplace,
it would be wrong of anybody to suggest anybody had overhauled anybody else in
terms of reputation.’

Deloitte’s chairman John Connolly boasted of Deloitte’s reputation at the
beginning of July, after revealing the firm had met its self-imposed target of
making £2bn in annual revenue by June this year.

The result took Deloitte a step closer to overtaking PwC as the biggest firm
in the UK.
But Connolly said: ‘Maybe we have already overhauled them in terms of our
standing in the marketplace.’

Deloitte sneaked past its target by £10m and the results included revenues
earned by the recently merged Swiss arm of the firm.

Overall income increased by 11.5%. Connolly added that the growth, in the
current climate, required a ‘superior performance to our rivals’.

PwC booked growth of 6% last year with revenues of £2.1bn. Powell would not
be drawn on whether the firm would match, or better, that growth rate but said
he was ‘confident’.

He added: ‘When you look right the way across our business, there are parts
that we would have expected to probably go a bit quieter, like corporate
finance, which have actually stood up pretty well.’

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