PracticeAccounting FirmsErnst & Young launches rebrand plan

Ernst & Young launches rebrand plan

Ernst & Young launches a rebranding project that may see a complete overhaul of the firm's image

Mark Otty, E&Y

Mark Otty, E&Y

The rebranding is the first by a Big Four firm since Deloitte decided to drop
the ‘Touche’ from its name and design a new logo in 2003.

The exercise will not see
E
&Y
change its name, but the firm is considering changing its logo and
may revise its current strap line ‘Quality In Everything We Do’.

Two separate sources at the UK firm indicated that it would be a worldwide
revamp. But the global firm denied any plans, creating confusion as to how
advanced the plans are. Details of budgets, timelines and which consultancies
have been engaged to advise on the rebranding are also unclear.

The news comes as the firm places renewed emphasis on tightening
relationships within its seven area structure and pushing into emerging markets.

E&Y reveals today that growth rates in the industry are beginning to
cool, as IFRS and Sarbanes-Oxley advisory work ease off.

The firm has grown UK revenues by nearly 50% over the last three years,
outperforming its three main rivals, chairman Mark Otty said, but figures for
2006/07 showed that revenues had only grown by 9% to £1.23bn, down on the
double-digit growth enjoyed in 2005 and 2006. Profits increased 7% to £328m.

Otty said: ‘For the last 12 months we have given a clear indication that our
revenue growth in the UK was going to be reduced from the Sarbanes-Oxley
inspired spike of 2006.’

The firm is pinning its growth hopes on financial services, which will be
boosted by work on MiFID, and opportunities in emerging markets.

E&Y brought more than 3,000 staff on board and boasts an average of 473
partners. Profits per partner stood at £688,000.

The firm stuck to its guns on not paying partners bonuses policy as is
favoured by some of the other Big Four firms.

The global firm’s spokesman said: ‘We [always] review the way we present
ourselves in the market place – but there are no plans to change our name, logo
or strapline.’

Rebrand merry-go-round

Ernst & Young would not be the only major firm or body to pursue a
rebranding in recent years. Deloitte, PricewaterhouseCoopers and the ICAEW have
all undertaken branding revamps.

PwC’s infamous attempt to rebrand its consultancy arm as ‘Monday’ saw the
firm pump £75m into the project, but fail to secure the internet domain name.

The Deloitte ‘green dot’ exercise, commissioned by John Connolly in 2003, was
a less traumatic event.

The same cannot be said for the ICAEW, which faced criticism for the £65,000
it spent on redesigning its logo.

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