PwC awaits business incubator complaint decision

Link PwC may abandon uneconomic audits”

Documents seen by Accountancy Age reveal that the ICAEW’s Professional Standards Office is about to conclude an eight-month investigation into PwC’s Business Incubator.

The complaint has been brought by GEMS Development Organisation, one of the companies taken on by PwC’s incubator project. GEMS founder Wingham Rowan said: ‘The ICAEW has been supportive. Its investigator has been thorough but impartial.’

The standards office’s procedures can lead to four outcomes. It can decide there is no ground for complaint, in which case no action is taken, but if it decides there is ground for complaint, it can, depending on its severity, send a caution letter, impose an unlimited fine, or refer it to a disciplinary investigation committee.

If it believes a single case has a public interest, it can refer the case to the Joint Disciplinary Scheme.

The ICAEW is expected to reach a decision on Tuesday. PwC started its incubator in March 2001, rebranded it to Venture Partners six months later and folded the service in October 2002. A PwC spokesman confirmed the ICAEW is ‘looking at the complaint’.

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