BDO predicts single-digit growth for firms

Simon Michaels, BDO Stoy Hayward

Simon Michaels, BDO Stoy Hayward

Most firms will see revenue growth next year in the single digits, down
slightly from the double-digit growth achieved by many firms this year as the
economic downturn worsens, the managing partner of
BDO Stoy Hayward has

‘I think [BDO’s growth] will be steadier next year, probably nearer
single-digit than double-digit growth and I think that will be a profession-wide
trend,’ Simon Michaels told Accountancy Age.

His comments came as BDO released its annual revenues for 2007-2008 last

The firm posted 11% revenue growth to £353.1m for the year to 4 July with
profits of £65m. Growth has been helped by winning a number of high profile
contracts including the valuation of Northern Rock and the receivership of
financial conglomerate Dawnay Day.

The top-10 firm has called for more transparency in the audit market and
Michaels welcomed the Financial Reporting Council’s audit inspection unit
reports which are due out next month.

These long-awaited reports from the accountancy regulator would help shine a
light on the closely guarded audit world, dominated by the Big Four, said

‘Its about giving the market confidence in what the profession is doing, but
it’s more about challenging the institutional prejudices that exist where people
think it’s a safer bet to buy Big Four and our view is that there is more choice
out there,’ he said. ‘The position is compounded by Big Four only clauses [in
audit contracts] and we will lobby to have those removed, because that does
limit our ability to drive the practice forward.’

Michaels said that he relishedthe challenge of helping BDO to stay on an even
keel amid the economic downturn. ‘When I was appointed managing partner, I
couldn’t have predicted that the financial markets were going to completely
collapse, but that’s where the challenge is,’ he said.

‘A real test of leadership is how you work with your colleagues to navigate a
way through more interesting times. For me I wouldn’t have wanted it any other
way in some respects.’

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