Originally dedicated to fighting the proposed merger of the ICAEW with CIMA and CIPFA, this site now provides news about the ICAEW

Do you think the ICAEW rebranding was money well spent?

Friday, September 30, 2005

Vote Now

You can vote online against the proposed ICAEW merger with CIPFA here:

Online voting form

Please make sure that you vote before 23rd October.

I would also be very grateful if you could point your colleagues and friends, from the ICAEW, in the direction of this site.

Thanks for your support.



  1. As a point of information, I believe that it is also possible to use the online form to vote in favour of the proposal.

    I'm sure that the one thing we would all like to see is a good turnout.

  2. Mostly I'd like my, undisclosed, side to win; easily.

  3. Wow, I always was under the impression it took 3 years of hard work and study to join the ICAEW, not the click of a mouse.

  4. Well said; any more wit and wisdom?

  5. See CCAB LLP SORP today. Do you need more?

  6. Vote tomorrow:

    The old adage says:

    better late than never but better never late

    but if you are unsure

    from tomorrow, wait until tomorrow or vote no now.

  7. This whole initiative is government initiated. One can only presume that this is Gordon's way of restoring some form of credibility to local govt. accounting, control & efficiencies.
    We should not associate ourselves with this spin nor devalue the standards we adhere to.

    Our council are supposed to represent our views but have promoted this govt. intiative in the face of our voiced opposition. It's time they went.
    Perhaps CIPFA will have them ?

  8. RECTE NUMERARE is the name of this puzzle:


    If each letter is assigned a unique digit and there are SUDOKO type clues: A=0, V=3, N=9.
    What is the numeric total?

    Please do not post your answer as that may not please those still working on it.

  9. I like the puzzle although it does not seem to be much of a challenge.

    Some 25 years ago my neighbour John, a chartered accountant who has since moved, had and last I heard , still has, a wicked wife named Ronnie, actually christened Veronica.

    Veronica transposed two of the stickers on my Ribic cube and it took me six months,of countless hours, to fathom that success was impossible.

    Ronnie was hugely competive but she had charm which is more than I could say about Eric and the Council who really want to kick me in the teeth.

  10. Sincere apologies for a couple terrible spelling mistakes.

  11. Re. Anonymous @ 11.00am - Local Govt accounting and control is generally robust; indeed CIPFA sets the standards with Govt backing. Efficiencies are not just the responsibility of accountants, from whichever institute they come, ultimately they're the responsibility of politicians and senior managers. And they have to be politically acceptable - not just what the accountants think should or could be done.

    And how does Anon's statement sit with regards to the NHS, which has a frequent deficit problem and where the FD is quite likely to be an ICAEW member? Councils must by law balance the budget!

  12. I can't stand wingers from CIPFA or any other mob. Those who can't handle the heat ...

  13. "This whole initiative is government initiated. One can only presume...."

    I'd have thought that as an accountant you could perhaps do better than to 'only presume'?

    Whether or not govt are behind this (I don't know if they are and I suspect you don't really know either) then its not something that can be ignored.

    If the govt. does see the six CCAB bodies as fighting like rather stuck up ferrets in a bag, the profession could lose much of its scope for self regulation and its delegated responsibilities (eg: auditor stautus, under Co's act).

    No Institute is entitled to a 'job
    for life', no matter how large or self-regarding it might be. Given the centralising instincts of the current administration, it might be a good idea to start acting like grown-ups, lest they set up regulatory bodies to do it for us.

  14. In reply to Anon 6:58

    Good point re the NHS. The response rather suggests you've hit a rather sore nerve.

  15. OK, so it's not their fault; but CIPFA does appear to be a useless waste of prospective talent.

  16. Please see the serious points re CCAB IFAC etc. and respond sensibly.

    Get it. Got it. Good.

  17. I find the mud slinging towards CIPFA from my fellow members rather embarrassing.

    We do not act in this way, and neither do we all share this outdated attitude.

  18. Anon 7.58,

    well said.

  19. Agreed.

    Mud slinging based on prejudice just is'nt cricket.

    We should limit our discussion to facts.

  20. A great many years ago, I was seconded to the Public Sector Audit Department over the summer quite period. I audited a NHS Trust hospitals and found it absolutely fascinating.

    My audit approach had to be completely altered. As a result of the financial controls the Trusts were operating in (EFL I think and 5% return on assets), in some cases, we had to test for over statement of liabilities and expenditure.

    Further, due to the volume of transactions (and complexity of income and expenditure streams) we could not simply perform a substantive audit. The Trust was the first true systems audit I performed.

    From a professional development view point - that was an excellent summer.

  21. Ian Morris has just sent me an email containing both parts of my unique ballot code!

    Surely not standard procedure for an Electoral Reform Society online vote?

  22. Ian - just to check - the passcodes for the ICAEW vote are being sent out over a notoriously insecure PUBLIC internet?

    To Anon health service auditor. I audited NHS accounts for PwC (yes, they let CPFA's loose on this) and the 'return on assets' thing was a bit of a challenge - they were always bang on the percentage target, making a huge number of transactions/classes of transactions potentially material through their context, rather than their absolute value. 'Fascinating' would be one word for it!

  23. sorry, misread the post about your voting email. I now appreciate that Ian Morris is your esteemed President.

    I'm surprised he has time to send out 120k emails, but congratulate him on his industry and commitment.

  24. I have just read the proposal document and laughed out loud at the following phrase,

    "As the pre-eminent public sector
    accountancy body in the world,CIPFA
    represents 13,500 members working atthe heart of an economic sector which accounts for approximately 40% of the global economy."

    This kind of meaningless PR may seem very clever to those who write it, but unfortunately only highlights the weakness of their argument.

    Will resignations occur if the No vote wins the day?

  25. Patrick

    Please would you explain which of the facts in the phrase you highlighted is incorrect.

  26. Hey bright spark,

    For starters, see the 54th post two items below.

  27. Noted - read the first of the 54 responses for specific commentary on wild PR claims.

  28. I have voted AGAINST the merger. I have also submitted my comments to the ICAEW under their CIPFA vote feedback section.

    Besides many reasons for voting against the merger (or murder as I call it), I am very unhappy at the new name and the additional MICA designatory letters.

    Below is a copy of my comments to the ICAEW:

    Dear Sirs,

    Re: Name of new merged body

    I have voted against the merger.

    Although the foregoing reason is a minor one compared to my other reasons for voting against the proposed merger, I have been very unhappy at the proposed name of the merged Institute and the inevitable loss of a brand name that stood for 125 years, not to mention the confusion that will be generated by allowing members to use an additional set of designatory letters, i.e. MICA.

    Regarding the proposed name of the new merged body, I am really surprised why the "in England and Wales" part of the name is being dropped.

    If the merged body is going to call itself "The Institute of Chartered Accountants", then why not call the merged body "The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales"?

    By keeping the geographical element we would not have to worry about Privy Council approval, or in case of Privy council disapproval, the need to search for another alternate name. That way we would also keep our Scottish counterparts (as well as other worldwide Institute of Chartered Accountants) happy as we need to work in conjunction with them in the future on accountancy matters.

    If the "England and Wales" element of the name is to be dropped on the grounds that the combined Institute (and its qualifications) would offer truly global qualifications, then please note that the Institutes in Australia and Canada maintain the geographical elements within their names despite offering training abroad, i.e. in Malaysia and Singapore for Australian chartered accountants and Bermuda for Canadian chartered accountants.

    If the ICAEW had to change its name for the sake of doing so (thereby sacrificing 125 years of its brand name), then it could have proposed the new name to be "The Institute of Chartered Accountants OF England and Wales" or "The Institute of Chartered Accountants in / of Great Britain" or "The Institute of Chartered Accountants in / of "United Kingdom"?

    I trust that you will comment on my suggestions.

    Yours faithfully,

    Kamran S.

  29. Anonymous

    My point is, that whilst the facts themselves may not be correct, this is pretty weak PR.

    Are we supposed to think "hey CIPFA members represent the heart 40% of the GLOBAL ECONOMY. Better vote Yes."

    I can't see any other reason to include this tripe.

  30. incorrect that is!

  31. S Kamran, Well said - I agree.

  32. Kamran

    Thanks for voting, and for your support.

    Good luck with getting a response from "our" institute.

    I have written around 10 times to them, and have never had a response.

    Maybe I have been deluding myself over the past 16 years or so, maybe I am not in fact a member?

    If they do respond, please feel free to post their response here.

    I would also be very graetful if you could point your friends and colleagues to this site.

    Many thanks.


  33. Kamran,

    Your certificate(s) of membership will be meaningless and you may not want and I doubt you will get a new certificate to hang with pride.

    One poster asked about the new logo - let's all spend freely and impress clients and the world.

  34. I have just received my copy of the latest Accountancy magazine which is full of the "merits" of this useless merger.

    In mainland Britain, CIPFA is the smallest of all CCAB bodies, so how can ICAEW have a greater voice by merging with them?

    The accountancy magazine is nothing but pro-merger propaganda to obtain further eleventh hour votes in favour of the merger.

    It contains a selection of comments by existing ICAEW members and their views on how they will vote. If these comments (17 out of 21 in favour) are indicative of how ICAEW members will vote then the merger will succeed, and I have a horrible feeling that it will.

    I am so confident that this crazy merger will go ahead that I have already spoken to the Scottish Institute with a view to becoming their member. I am prepared to do even more exams, if necessary, than be part of an Institute (ICAEW) that is trying to devalue the ACA qualification in this way.

  35. No point joining ICAS.

    When ACCA become the leading UK accounting body in a few years time, ICAS will merge with MICA - or whatever you call yourselves.

  36. ACCA have lowered their examination standards and have 320,000 students, most of whom they will eventually admit as members. CIMA have also decimated their examination standards and have 86,000 students. ICAEW and CIPFA have lost the plot and will be prepared to merge with the PDSA.

    You apply to ICAS and good luck to you.

  37. Dear ICAEW members,

    This is a long message, but I am sure you will find it interesting, logical and compelling, so please read it carefully.

    I am certain that had this ICAEW – CIPFA merger not originally started off as a three- way ICAEW – CIMA – CIPFA merger, this ridiculous merger would have had no chance of succeeding.

    Although it had many flaws, the original idea of a three-way merger had some merits, especially the “large voice” argument. Some considered the ICAEW – CIMA – CIPFA “Super Institute” to be a real breakthrough within the UK accountancy profession but when CIMA pulled out, the substance of the merger changed. The merger maniacs were now no longer trying to create a Super Institute, but were trying to join “little and large” together in a bid to fulfil the ICAEW’s long standing dream of trying to merge with anyone at any cost.

    Many accountants argue that there are too many UK accountancy bodies offering different qualifications, hence confusing the public. Fair enough, so let’s merge ICAEW and all the other UK accountancy bodies. I will vote in favour. But how can ICAEW merging with the smallest of the mainland UK’s accountancy bodies change the current situation by so much?

    As if there weren’t too many accountancy qualifications to confuse the public, the new merged body will have three sets of designatory letters, i.e. ACA, FCA and CPFA….no wait, there’s another fourth set available too….MICA.

    MICA is an optional set which means some members can use it and some not – its usage will be entirely up to the members! What is the criteria for using MICA? None! What will the public think of all this? There will be nothing but confusion, I am sure.

    What about fellowship? Presumably, former ICAEW associate members will go on to become fellows of the new merged body but former CIPFA members cannot become fellows of the new merged body because CIPFA does not offer fellowship! So we will have one merged body with some of its members being entitled to fellowship and some not! Talk about confusion.

    If CIPFA members consider this fellowship business to be too unfair to them, then there would be two possible ways to bring about equality within the new merged Institute:

    1. Offer CIPFA members fellowship. This would bring yet another set of designatory letters, i.e. FCPFA.

    2. Remove the idea of fellowship altogether, so FCAs will cease to exist and ACAs cannot progress to fellowship. Try convincing existing FCAs and those ACAs that are close to ten years of ICAEW membership!

    The end result of all this will inevitably be one qualification and one set of designatory letters for all members of the merged Institute, thereby nullifying the ICAEW Council’s promise of existing ICAEW members being allowed to keep their ACA / FCA designatory letters.

    With CIMA pulling out, the ICAEW lost 65,000 out of a total of 79,000 members that it hoped would be taken on, i.e. a massive 82% reduction in the number of additional members than had been previously targeted. Yet, despite this, the ICAEW went ahead with finalizing plans for a two-way merger with CIPFA that would add a mere 10% to its membership numbers. Notwithstanding the CIMA withdrawal, the ICAEW continued on its quest without obtaining preliminary approval from its members, especially after CIMA had withdrawn.

    Just because the ICAEW Council approved of this ridiculous merger, it unilaterally went ahead with marketing campaigns and pro-merger propaganda using its members’ funds, and without allowing its members to formally vote on whether ICAEW – CIPFA merger plans should be finalized and hence be brought to a further final vote.

    Once CIMA withdrew from merger talks, 82% of potential members were lost, and thus the whole merger rationale, i.e. “large voice” changed. At that time, merger plans should have been abandoned or at the very least an EGM of ICAEW members should have been convened in order to determine if ICAEW members still wanted to go ahead with a merger that was now different from that earlier proposed.

    The ICAEW marketing campaign described the merger with CIPFA as an “exciting new opportunity”. To me this was very misleading, as so far, I have not yet come across literature from ICAEW that makes it clear to its members, many of which did not exist in 1990 (and are hence unaware), that in the same year an identical opportunity to merge with CIPFA was rejected and that they are now making another attempt at a previously failed mission.

    The ICAEW pro-merger activity has been so strong in terms of financial resources, marketing campaigns and using its influence via roadshows, publicity propaganda, etc. that many members, who would not have voted in favour after CIMA’s withdrawal, will now most probably vote in favour of the merger.

    The ICAEW has sent e-mails and voting papers that says “Your council encourages you to vote IN FAVOUR”. They have already influenced us enough through their massive marketing campaign, so do they need to remind us once again, just before the final vote? This is nothing but exerting biased pressure on members.

    As ICAEW members, it is our right to use our vote in the way we feel is best for our profession, so how can Council try to influence our vote in this way?

    I am of the opinion that this merger is not our choice but it is being imposed upon us through ICAEW’s continued pressure for us to vote in favour.

    I am so against this merger that if it goes ahead, then I will be joining the Scottish Institute or the ACCA – even if that means taking more exams!



    Let us hope that the 26th October 2005 edition of the Financial Times newspaper does not contain the following headline:

    In Affectionate Remembrance of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, which died at Moorgate Place, London EC2 on 25th October, 2005, deeply lamented by a large circle of sorrowing friends and acquaintances R.I.P. N.B. - The body will be cremated and the ashes taken to the ACCA at 29 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2.


    May common sense prevail.


    Kamran S.

  38. Kamran

    Do not worry over such small details as letters etc.

    Also CIMA will come on board in a few years time after the CIPFA ICAEW merger has been digested and the super institute established.

  39. Kamran,

    Most ICAEW members can join ACCA without taking exams.

    You could use that as a temporary measure until you are able to join ICAS.

    Alternatively, you you try to organise a petition requesting ICAS to admit ICAEW members on the basis that they can never have a vote and that they have to retain ACA or FCA.

  40. K & K 10 Best of the Rest 0

    Half time score after a few own goals.

  41. Quite a few members of ICAS are CIPFA too.

    They have a reciopocal agreement, and have done for many years.

  42. I do not believe CIPFA members are entitled to join ICAS under any reciprocal arrangement.

    If I am wrong please quote from the ICAS regulations.

  43. Kamran

    You should improve on your qualification - do CIOT instead. Now they are the most prestigious body you could join.

  44. anon 3.37

    Just go to google and put in:

    icas cipfa reciprocal

    and out pops the research you are looking for

  45. I have just used Google as suggested. To give some exemptions from examinations is not to allow automatic reciprocal membership.

    ICAS, ICAI and ICAEW have repiciprocal full membership. I should be amazed if ICAS will allow that if MICA appears.

  46. ICAEW members

    Such long posts - don't you have work to do.

  47. It was intended for the intelligent and it was a cohesive and compelling piece.

    Perhaps Ken should start moderating if the standard of comment is now so low.

  48. Anon 3.56

    It is still a reciprocal agreement, and I never said that it was honorary.

    Secondly, if ICAS, ICAI and ICAEW have honorary membership then why don’t disgruntled ICAEW members simply use their “honorary” card and become ICAS or ICAI members and leave those ICAEW members who do want to merge to get on with forming the Super Institute in the brave new world.

  49. Read the rules and use a little common sense.

  50. http://www.icas.org.uk/site/cms/v4_newscategoryview.asp?chapter=2&type=2009

  51. I know the rules – you have to maintain your membership of both bodies (ICAS or ICAI & MICA in this case). Of course, publicly you would not draw attention to your MICA status.

    Common sense – you have got me there, please explain simply.

  52. Anonymous said:

    .....why don’t disgruntled ICAEW members simply use their “honorary” card and become ICAS or ICAI members and leave those ICAEW members who do want to merge to get on with forming the Super Institute in the brave new world.

    How can you justify calling an Institute which increases by only 11% as a "Super Institute"?

    With CIMA out of the merger talks the question of forming a super institute doesn't even arise.

    The ICAS has only 13,000 members, does that mean it is the opposite of a super institute?

  53. The ICAEW - CIPFA merger proposal reminds me of Norman Wisdom's "Early Bird". This merger between Mr. Little and Mr. Large is total mismatch just like the suggested merger between Consolidated and Grimsdale dairies!

    In marriage terms, this merger is worse than that of Charles and Diana who had a 13 year age gap and where the woman was taller than the man who loved another woman!

    ACCA members are going to have a field day when this merger is approved. They have been waiting for this day. They have been dying to see the extinction of ICAEW.

  54. Kamran

    The 13,000 CIPFA members bring with them £40mm of income. Your 120,000 member institute generates little more than this.

    By increasing your membership by 11% you increase your income by 55%. I say that is good business by your Council.

    CIPFA's income generation will ensure the survival of your Institute.

    Remember, ICAEW proposed marriage to CIPFA.

  55. Sorry, I think I may have my numbers slightly wrong. It has been a long day and I am working from memory.

    CIPFA has £40mm income and ICAEW £50mm and MICA will have £90mm.

  56. I think ACCA, ICAEW, ICAS & ICAI should merge. Now that would be a dominant voice in global accountancy, in virtually all sectors.

    It does strike me as odd, when you have the top 20 and lower - training ICAEW, ACCA, ICAS & ICAI yet there is still so much rivalry. Sad really considering the potential!

    CIPFA are a specialist institute and should be left well alone.