BusinessBusiness RecoveryOn the money with Gavin Hinks

On the money with Gavin Hinks

We learn this week that BDO Stoy Hayward has the won the job to value Northern Rock

Good luck to the firm, and BDO will certainly need it, because they are
surely
about to take on one of the most difficult and politically sensitive jobs in the
UK at
the moment.

Every Northern Rock investor concerned about where his or her money has gone
will be watching the valuation with a microscope.

Not only that, but there will be those that could argue that the valuation is
too high.
Whichever way you turn this is going to be hair raising, something akin to a
financial dangerous sport.

There’s no doubt that it will be lucrative, and I also have no doubt that
there were others who wanted the work. As I said, there’s money in it and its
high profile. Handled correctly it could work well.

The thing that BDO will have to ensure is that it finishes the work promptly
and avoid accusations that the longer it takes the more its own fees are racking
up.

While this job elevates BDO to trusted government service provider there are
those in the opposition who will no doubt point out that we are still waiting
for BDO to report on the collapse of Rover.

The carmaker went belly-up in 2005 and so far there have been many a remark
on the expenses so far tabled by BDO investigators.

The one thing the firm will not want as Parliament returns is a row over the
valuers.
That will garner all the wrong kind of attention. Which means not only will BDO
have
to bring its financial skills to bear ­ but the firm will have to exercise some
pretty tight
PR judgement.

That, in the end, could turn out to be a much more difficult task for BDO
than
the valuation itself.

Gavin Hinks is editor of Accountancy Age

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