One of the UK's big four accountancy firms reported an 11% hike in profits after it "held its nerve" and continued to take on staff despite challenging markets.
Professional services firm PwC, which has a significant presence in Northern Ireland, recruited 2,300 people in the year to June, including more than 1,200 graduates and 100 school-leavers.
Contract wins with Aviva, Dubai World and Yule Catto boosted its auditing and assurance division and helped the firm report "a strong performance" in the year despite a "very challenging" market. Revenues in the UK rose 7% to £2.6bn, while profits were up 10.8% to £727m.
Average profit per partner rose 4.6% to £798,000, although the amount they received after payments to retired partners and equity adjustments fell 4% to £679,000.
Ian Powell, PwC UK chairman and senior partner, said: "We have recruited significant numbers of new people, and invested heavily in our infrastructure to make sure we deliver a world class service to our clients."