Big Four won’t become big five soon: Deloitte chief

The Big Four’s global supremacy is unlikely to be challenged in the near
future, global head of accounting giant Deloitte said today.

Deloitte CEO, Jim Quigley said he does not forsee any immediate threat to the
Big Four – Deloitte, PwC, KPMG and Ernst & Young – which dominate the
international audit landscape.

“We had 150 years building Deloitte. Is it possible, of course it is
possible; but will it require a long period of time, I’m sure it will,” he said.

He described mid-tier firms – Grant Thornton, BDO and McGladrey – as
outstanding, but believed they would provide no threat to Big Four domination in
the immediate future.

“The largest companies are generally served by one of the Big Four firms and
I think that’s going to continue to be true and one of the reasons are the needs
of that market place, due to the scale of those enterprises.”

The comments come as The House of Lords prepares to hear evidence in its
inquiry into audit competition, expected later this month. The European
Commission also has plans to release a green paper on the issue in the next few

Quigley spoke as Deloitte celebrated its ascension as the world’s largest
professional services firm, marginally overtaking nearest rival, PwC, by $9m

Asked about the performance of Deloitte’s UK arm, he said growth may have
been affected by the recession.

“The recession has been uneven and that will also be reflected in the
regional results of Deloitte or any professional services firm,” he said.

“You should expect professional services firms be moving in parallel with
global GDP.”

Further reading:

nudges ahead of PwC as largest global firm

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