BusinessCorporate FinancePwC chairman: no more ‘lip service’ to improving reporting

PwC chairman: no more 'lip service' to improving reporting

PricewaterhouseCoopers UK chairman Kieran Poynter warns that companies must act before government and regulators do

It’s no longer acceptable for corporates to simply meet their regulatory
obligations when it comes to publishing financial statements and annual reports,
PricewaterhouseCoopers UK chairman Kieran Poynter has warned.

Speaking at last night’s PwC building public trust awards, Poynter said
companies had to do more than pay ‘lip service’ to improving reporting.

‘It’s no longer good enough to rely on the regulatory reporting model to
explain a complicated picture,’ he said. ‘If we in the business world don’t
direct our own change agenda, government and regulators will.’

And in a statement so strident that it took the audience by surprise he
added: ‘I’ve yet to experience a regulatory review that failed to generate a
burden greater than the value it created.’

Poynter said reputational issues needed to be ‘hard-wired’ into every aspect
of business and used private equity as an example of an industry that had failed
to do so.

‘The sector failed to recognise the importance of reputational risk. They
thought of it as a public company obligation,’ he said, adding that it would
take ‘some time’ to recover its damaged reputation.

He said the type of information that may ‘jusity a business’s licence to
operate’ could include the number of people employed directly and indirectly,
impact on the environment and its total tax contribution.

The Capita Group and Great Portland Estates won the overall categories for
the FTSE 100 and FTSE 250, respectively, in the awards ‘For Telling It How It
Is’ in their communication with stakeholders

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