UK accountancy market trends

Posted on: January 24, 2014

There was an interesting piece on growth and UK accountancy market trends in Accountancy Age on 13 January looking at the trends within top 100 accountancy practices (http://www.accountancyage.com/aa/analysis/2322595/full-top50-50-analysis-mixed-bag-of-success?utm_term=&utm_content=headline_title&utm_campaign=AA.Best_Practice_RL.EU.A.U&utm_medium=Email&utm_source=AA.DCM.Editors_Updates)

The main points were:

  • There were 12 new entrants into the market – in some ways this is encouraging as it shows that there are great opportunities (and profits) but in other ways it is a warning that the competition is ramping up even further.

 

  • In the top 50 firms, income increased from £10.3bn in 2012 to £10.95bn in 2013 – a not very impressive 6% growth. But there were exceptions:

Winners

  • Zolfo Copper (insolvency) posted 54% growth
  • New entrant ClearSky Accounting (with Optionis aiming at freelancers and contractors) grew 42.7% with help from acquisitions
  • Bishop Fleming posted 23% growth (through acquisitions)
  • Francis Clark showed growth of 21% (including corporate finance growth)

Losers

  • RSM Tenon – acquired by Baker Tilly – saw a 12% decline
  • Begbies Traynor (insolvency) saw a 4.6% fall

 

  • One of the biggest reasons for the growth of the big four (combined income of £8.35bn – 75% of the top 50) is attributed to consultancy rather than traditional audit and taxation services. Growth here was 35%

 

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