Top awards for KPMG and Price Bailey
KPMG was named Global Firm of the Year at the Accountancy Age Awards 2010 and also won Business Recovery Project of the Year
In awarding the Global Firm of the Year prize, the judges highlighted KPMG’s position as leading auditor of UK stock exchange-listed companies (391) and that the firm won more than 7,000 new client engagements during the year. Beyond the UK, KPMG Europe has expanded to now include sixteen countries. One senior CFO testimonial described KPMG as “a true partner, always going the extra mile to deliver high quality client service and adding significant value to our business.” In addition, other highlights included raising nearly £900,000 in one year for Alzheimers Society and 32 per cent of staff contributing 33,000 volunteering hours.This year was the second year in a row that KPMG has won Business Recovery Project of the Year. Last year, it was for JJB Sports. This year, the award was for KPMG’s work on the Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) for Blacks Leisure. This was one of just a handful undertaken by listed businesses, and enabled Blacks to continue trading uninterrupted without the need to suspend its shares. Landlords of Blacks stores were offered the equivalent of around six months’ rent under the terms of the CVA, and all other creditors were paid in full. The judges were impressed with the scale of the jobs that were saved (4,000 jobs had been under threat).John Griffith-Jones, chairman of KPMG in the UK, said: “We are very proud to win these awards. To be named Global Firm of the Year is a compliment indeed, and it is pleasing to see our pioneering work on CVAs recognised in the Business Recovery category.”Price Bailey was awarded ‘Large Firm of the Year.Peter Gillman, Managing Director of Price Bailey Chartered Accountants, enthused: “It is a great honour to win what is regarded as the premier award for our profession and it is also a tremendous compliment to our entire team for their skills, dedication and personality that they bring to the firm. It is wonderful for everyone to receive this recognition from others!”Despite the recession, the firm has flourished and this year grew 6.8 per cent to £15.7m but that is just part of the story.Internal communication has been improved with an ‘Adding Value Guide’ made available to staff through the intranet that also includes a wiki facility, allowing anybody to add articles, insert comments and amend existing materials to keep it up to date.A few years ago the firm changed the approach of the team towards client relationships by introducing partner contact time and fixed fee levels, which helps to deliver a better service through regular contact by the client and accountant at no extra cost.Price Bailey opened an office in Guernsey, which not only generates income from Guernsey but also facilitates a link to UK clients and creates fees from work that would previously have been outsourced. Due to its success in the City, earlier this year the practice expanded by moving into bigger premises in Dashwood House.Offices have been upgraded and departmental structures radically changed so that partners and staff are moved around the practice to where their skills are needed to deliver a premium service to clients, which is clearly widely valued through the feedback they receive from clients.A new graduate training programme has been implemented, providing structured experience across all departments, enabling newly qualified staff to make an informed decision about career preferences and provide the firm with highly skilled client facing teams for the longer term.