Germany presents a challenge
John Griffith-Jones and his senior management team will be brushing up on their German this week after the announcement of the firm’s merger
The German market, like the UK, is dominated by a few firms. According to
figures from Ernst & Young in Germany, KPMG holds a huge 50% of DAX 30
audits, compared with 30% for PricewaterhouseCoopers. In the mid-market and
technology sectors, that dominance is less pronounced.
PwC and KPMG are the two largest firms in Germany, with the former turning
over 1,100m euros (£742m), and KPMG 1,040m euros.
KPMG makes most of its money in Germany from audit, which is worth 526m
euros. The tax sector earns the firm 222m euros, and advisory 292m euros. The
broader base of the UK firm, and its cross-selling, could be one area it can add
Experts on the Big Four’s activities say that UK audit fees tend to be higher
than German audit fees, and profitability higher as a result.