Belfast Telegraph

KPMG International books jump in full-year revenues

KPMG International has booked a jump in full-year revenues despite a "challenging" business environment across Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

The big four accountancy firm reported an 8% rise in global turnover to 25.42 billion US dollars (£20 billion) in the year to September 30, led by regional growth in the Americas and Asia Pacific, where revenues rose 9.6% and 9.8% respectively on a local currency basis.

That is compared with 6% growth across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, as well as India, which KPMG said reflected "an improving but challenging environment".

KPMG did not isolate UK performance in its latest release, but pointed to its "Global Brexit Centre of Excellence" as a example of new services it was offering to clients "as they prepare for what could be a potentially major shift in global trade".

A number of companies in Britain have been fretting over the potential introduction of trade tariffs between the EU and UK after Brexit, while financial services have raised concerns over the possible loss of passporting rights that provide access to the single market.

KPMG saw the highest demand for its advisory and tax services across the business, which delivered revenue growth of 11.5% and 8.8%.

Chairman John Veihmeyer said: "KPMG's strong FY16 results, in what remains a slow-growth global environment, are a testament to the passion and innovative thinking we bring to our work.

"In today's volatile business climate, our strategic investments in technology, alliances, and our people, are fuelling our growth across our geographies and service lines."

Its workforce increased by 8% to reach 189,000 partners and staff this year - the highest number of people ever employed by the firm.

The company is now planning to embark on its "largest ever" network investment, spending 2.5 billion US dollars (£19.7 billion) on new services, technology, and acquisitions, to help develop its data analytics, cyber security and audit offerings.

The update from KPMG comes after PwC reported a 7% rise in global revenues to 35.9 billion US dollars (£28.2 billion) over the past year, and Deloitte posted an 8% rise in annual revenues to 36.9 billion (£28.9 billion).

Sector peer EY saw turnover leap 9% 29.6 billion US dollars (£23.3 billion) in the year ending June 30.