Monday, June 27, 2005

ACCA Believe Merger Plans Flawed

Allen Blewitt, chief executive of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) the world’s largest accountancy organisation outside China, has criticised the ICAEW merger plans.

He is quoted in today's Times as saying:

"The model for merging accountancy bodies is probably flawed..We educated accountants to be sceptical and conservative, yet you are asking people to forget years of entrenched mindsets."

He believes that institutes should collaborate first, then worry about whether or not to merge.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Row Between ICAS and ICAEW Deepens

Des Hudson's (Chief Executive of ICAS) article about the proposed ICAEW merger, which is published today in Accountancy Age, has raised the hackles of the ICAEW.

In the article Des Hudson says that the merger is based on "unproven beliefs", and that a "monolithic institute" would not be more effective.

He goes on to say that ICAS sees considerable benefit in an "exclusive and unremitting focus on chartered accountants".

Eric Anstee is reportedly so incensed, by what he calls "spoiling tactics", that he has threatened to "realign" the ICAEW's funding of CCAB; he may even withdraw ICAEW from CCAB.

Friday, June 10, 2005

12% Vote For Subs Hike

In a staggering display of apathy, a mere 12% (15000) of the membership of the ICAEW bothered to vote on the proposal for the 9% subscriptions hike.

63.7% of those who could be bothered to vote, voted in favour of increasing the basic member subscription by 9%, to £252 from £231.

I hope that the 111000 members, who could not be bothered to vote, feel thoroughly ashamed of themselves.

If this level of apathy is repeated in the merger vote in October, the ICAEW may well win the vote; even though the majority of the membership will not have made their voices heard.

I hope, that more of the membership votes (even if it is in favour of the merger) in October.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Soap Box

My thanks to Des Hudson, the CEO of ICAS, who emailed me last night; and pointed me in the direction of his article, that appeared yesterday in the Soap Box section of The Herald.

The article is written in response to the one a week earlier, featured on this site, in which Eric Anstee discusses the merger; and makes a play for ICAS merging with the ICAEW.

He points out that Anstee's article was inaccurate; in as much as the Scottish Institute is the oldest when compared to the ICAEW.

150 years old, as opposed to 125 years old, to be precise.

The article goes on to point out that ICAS believes that competition is good for the profession, I tend to agree.

Additionally, it notes that the Consultative Committee of Accounting Bodies is the appropriate vehicle for the profession to speak with one voice.

He states unequivocally that ICAS has no current intention to merge, noting that there are far more important issues to be focusing on.

He also notes that the takeover of CIPFA would:

" an amalgam of accountants not all of whom are, in an everyday sense, recognised as being chartered accountants. The mixture of qualifications the new body would embrace would mean that ICAS would be the only one in the UK that could accurately claim to be called The Institute of Chartered Accountants".

In other words, as I have said, the takeover of CIPFA will dilute the brand.

Now let us be done with this nonsensical proposal and concentrate on more pressing issues, such as cutting Council down to no more than 12 people.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Scottish Institute To Fight

The change of president of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS) has done nothing to dampen their ardour, in respect of fighting the proposal by the ICAEW to name the merged body "The Institute of Chartered Accountants".

New President Mike Hathorn took up office at the end of April this year.

Des Hudson, the CEO of ICAS, said that ICAS will oppose plans by the combined English-based organisations to adopt the title Institute of Chartered Accountants.

He said that there had been little attempt by the English bodies to discuss the issue.

He is quoted, in an article in The Scotsman, as saying:

"We would be happy to sit down with them and find a sensible solution, but as yet there have been no negotiations".

As I have noted many times, it seems that the ICAEW have not though the merger proposal through.

I don't think that ICAS need worry too much, the merger proposals do not stand a chance of being approved by the membership of the ICAEW.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Anstee Plea To Scots

Eric Anstee has made a plea to the Scots, in a recent article in The Herald.

He seems, in a rather indirect manner, to be asking the Scots to come on board with the merger proposals. This, in my view, should have been done before the merger plans were put before the members of the ICAEW.

I see he uses my phrase about "brand dilution". I am pleased that he reads, and takes notice, of what is being said on this site.

That being the case could someone from the ICAEW please respond to the pile of emails that I have sent them, over the past few weeks, asking them about the costs of the pro merger campaign?