PracticeAccounting FirmsFDs prefer institute merger

FDs prefer institute merger

Would UK accountants be better served by a single accountancy institute representing their interests?

Link: ICAS rules out merger with ICAEW

ICAS may have recently ruled out the possibility of a merger with the ICAEW in the near future, but it seems that many financial directors feel a single UK accountancy institute would be beneficial.

Nearly half of those asked in this week’s Accountancy Age/Reed Accountancy Big Question felt UK accountants would be better served by a single institute representing their interests. By comparison, only 38% of those surveyed felt the situation was better as it currently is, while 14% remained neutral on the subject.

With ACCA, CIMA and CIPFA joining the ICAEW and ICAS in representing UK accountants, many feel the wider influence of the profession has been weakened and could be much improved if there was just one representative body.

‘Accountants will never carry the same weight as a unified profession, because of the competing interests and voices. A stronger body is needed to rectify our reputation,’ said Bryan Armour of Parchment Housing Group.

Many felt that, not only were separate institutes weakening the position of accountants, but they were also hitting them directly in their pockets.

‘There appears to be much duplication of administrative, research effort and expenditure reflected in the ever-spiralling annual subscriptions,’ said Ian Rae of Penlon. ‘If these were two commercial businesses, a merger would have taken place years ago.’

However, there are those that are quite happy with the current system and think any move towards a single institution would be damaging.

‘I am against monopoly and a keen supporter of fair competition,’ said one financial director. ‘A single accountancy institute would reduce competition and that would reduce the level of quality representation.’

Others are simply defensive of their own institute. ‘I’m a fellow of the ICAEW old school, and look down on the rest,’ said one. ‘Why would I want to merge with them?’

‘The Scottish institute was the first started in 1854, has the tradition and history and has a higher prestige in world terms,’ said another. ‘It should stay independent.’

Related Articles

Sexual harassment – is accountancy next for #MeToo?

Accounting Firms Sexual harassment – is accountancy next for #MeToo?

3d Karen Baxter, Lewis Silkin
Johnston Carmichael CEO appointed as ICAS president

Accounting Firms Johnston Carmichael CEO appointed as ICAS president

4w Emma Smith, Managing Editor
British Accountancy Awards 2018 – entries open!

Accounting Firms British Accountancy Awards 2018 – entries open!

1m Emma Smith, Managing Editor
Is the accountancy sector facing an international talent crisis?

Accounting Firms Is the accountancy sector facing an international talent crisis?

1m Lewis Silkin
RSM appoints new Chief Operating Officer

Accounting Firms RSM appoints new Chief Operating Officer

2m Alia Shoaib, Reporter
RSM announces 11 partner promotions

Accounting Firms RSM announces 11 partner promotions

2m Emma Smith, Managing Editor
BDO hires former AstraZeneca creative director as head of digital and innovation

Accounting Firms BDO hires former AstraZeneca creative director as head of digital and innovation

2m Emma Smith, Managing Editor
What does the future hold for listed accountancy firms?

Accounting Firms What does the future hold for listed accountancy firms?

2m Fergus Payne, Lewis Silkin