E&Y to convert to LLP.

Ernst & Young has become the first Big Five firm to declare its intention of becoming a limited liability partnership.

The firm revealed its plan in its annual report published this week which also shows chairman Nick Land earned just over a million last year.

It is Land who discloses in his report statement that E&Y favours LLP status and that it will push ahead to complete a conversion by the middle of next year.

‘The introduction of LLPs is an important step forward in beginning to provide a fair and reasonable measure of protection for businesses such as ours in a society where litigation is often seen as a way of avoiding or masking responsibility,’ he said.

As many as 90,000 firms have expressed an interest to Companies House in becoming an LLP and the statement could open the floodgates with other big accounting and law firms following the move.

Land’s income last year makes him one of the biggest earners in practice.

KPMG’s Mike Rake is the only other Big Five senior partner to have revealed his remuneration, which last year reached £1.5m.

Land’s basic package was £778,597, a 15% increase on the previous year.

In addition he received a pension contribution of £175,103 and interest on partner capital of £46,899.

For the year ending 30 June 2000 E&Y unveiled a total fee income of £772m, including £146.6m from its management consulting arm that was sold to Cap Gemini in May this year.

The continuing parts of the business grew by 16% to £625.6m with partnership profit up 21% to £189.1m and profit per partner up 18% to £424,000.

The results mean E&Y has fallen behind Deloitte & Touche in the Accountancy Age Top 50, which reported a fee income of £796m.

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