PwC Rejiggers Its Member Firms

By grouping its firms by region, the accounting firm hopes to improve its business in emerging markets.
Sarah JohnsonAugust 20, 2008

PricewaterhouseCoopers plans to reorganize its member firms this fall.

Announced on Wednesday, the move is designed better position the Big Four accounting firm in emerging markets to make investments and acquisitions. The firm will also change its internal standards to make them more consistent among its many offices.

PwC’s network of firms will be split into three so-called geographic clusters: East, Central, and West. And they will be led by the senior partner of the largest national firm in each cluster. The West cluster — which includes the United States, Canada, and Mexico — will be led by Dennis Nally, senior partner of PwC US.

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In addition, Silas Young, senior partner of PwC China, will oversee the East Cluster, which includes Hong Kong, China, Singapore, New Zealand, Japan, and Korea. Ian Powell, PwC UK’s senior partner, will oversee the Central Cluster, which includes Europe, the Middle East, India, and Africa.

In its announcement, PwC attributed the changes to the “increasingly global nature” of its services but insisted its services will stay localized. “While our member firms will be more closely aligned and more responsive, they will continue to be locally owned and managed, preserving the high level of accountability to our stakeholders and regulators, while encouraging the entrepreneurial spirit that has been the foundation of their success,” said Samuel DiPiazza, PwC’s global CEO who will be a part of the firm’s new Network Leadership Team, which includes Nally.

Nally has been vocal about the accounting world’s momentum toward a single set of globally accepted accounting principles. Earlier this year, he encouraged U.S. finance executives to embrace the shift toward international financial reporting standards over U.S. GAAP or risk hurting their business’ competitiveness worldwide.

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