Thursday, October 06, 2005

Details Details Details

There is an interesting, yet maybe not obvious, difference in wording between the ICAEW merger proposal document sent to the members of the ICAEW, and the CIPFA merger proposals sent to the members of CIPFA.

The CIPFA document says (page 7):

"All members will use the title 'Chartered Accountant'".

The ICAEW document says (page 7):

"All qualified accountant members will be entitled to use the description chartered accountant".

The dual designatory letters, so emphatically emphasised by the ICAEW as being a guarantee of the ICAEW brand, will be debased and ignored if we are all called chartered accountants.

The question also arises, why is there a difference in wording between the two documents?


  1. Ken,

    It was "always" my understanding that all members would be called Chartered Accountants even if the name is not approved.

    As someone said, unless the Privy Council regards an Institute that employs the scum of the earth as the scum of the earth.

  2. Ken,

    The distinction arises because those entering by the CIPFA route (despite some different designatory letters) will (like existing Chartered Accountants from ICAEW, ICAS, ICAI), if they choose to use any description, also have to use the description Chartered Accountant (nothing more and nothing less).

  3. Whether one is a fellow, an associate or a nothing, one will still be a Chartered Accountant.

  4. Yes.

    Similarly, I am a member of CIOT. I decided to keep the letters atii (rather than CTA) but I have to describe myself as a Chartered Tax Advisor.

  5. Ken,

    You have worked long and hard on behalf of many (I hope enough) of us.

    Even two of the most powerful minds in the world failed to spot the obvious late one Sunday night.

  6. Anon 7.06

    Sour grapes my friend.

  7. I do not agree it is sour grapes, that suggests someone else has done better though with the click of a mouse they may have undeservedly done as well - but we will all be doing the same thing tomorrow and it is no consolation to me that CIPFA will soon have been fleeced as the fools they are.
    I am anti-merger to an extreme.

  8. Anon 7.20,

    Thousands will never regard such as you as equal.

    It will be a phyrric victory at best.


  9. Anons 7.41 & 7.20

    You guys crack me up.

    I better start taking the conceit tablets if I am to be handed a share of the “chartered” intangible asset.

  10. Over time CPFA, FCA, ACA will be abolished like it or not.

  11. You are Anon 7.20 you twit.

  12. LOL, so I am.

    Thank you.

    Kind regards.

  13. Anon 8.27

    So will I be but I may be part-exchanged first.

  14. I have never understood the chartered thing.

    It is no guarantee of quality.

    Read page 142 of accountancy October 2005.

  15. ICAEW Bye-law 7 states that bankruptcy and late payment of subscriptions usually result in cessation of membership.

    On the other hand a conviction for treason, terrorism, mass murder or rape etc. may estop admission to membership but appears not to be cause for cessation of membership.

    Is the above the whole truth as near as matters and what do the CIPFA regulations say?

  16. ICAEW bye-laws Schedule 2
    2 (a) A member or student shall be liable to disciplinary action in accordance with this Schedule in any of the following cases whether or not he was a member or student at the time of the occurrence giving rise to his becoming so liable:
    (i) if, in the course of carrying out professional work or otherwise, he has committed any act or default likely to bring discredit to himself, the Institute or the profession of accountancy;

  17. Points:

    (1) "shall" not "may" but see (b)[not published above] as regards court evidence;

    (2) the continued use of Media Strategy has brought discredit upon the President, the Institute and the accountancy profession;

    (3) the President's open letter is, it is contended, recklessly inaccurate and has brought into effect all three forms of discredit.

    Since the President has put his hand to the letter referenced above his immediate resignation from the ICAEW may be reasonably requested and expected.

  18. my word you people are up late.

    month end closing perhaps?

  19. The answer is in the wording:

    CIPFA will have the title "Chartered Accountant"

    While ACA/FCA can only use the description chartered accountant.

    Note the words title and description and the use of capital C and A.

    Hope that clarifies the point.

  20. I have finally had time to read the merger bumph that came through.

    Here are my thoughts for what they are worth:

    1. The new institute will be called Institute of Chartered Accountancy. Note the use of the word Accountancy not Accountants (Ref Resolution Document Page 1 point 4 Explanatory notes)
    2. Everyone will use the letters MICA being Member of Institute of Chartered Accountancy (Ref Sch C Page 7 Amendments to bye laws). We will all use the description “Chartered Accountants”.

  21. Anon 9.23,

    it actually looks reasonable when put that way. Having said that, best be careful CIMA don't sue under the 'passing-off' laws!

  22. CIMA will be next on the smash and grab list if CIPA merge or submerge as someone put it.

  23. Does anyone know what CIMA's finances are like, and if so what is the income split between subs and consultancy.

    Further, does CIMA own it's London Offices (CIPFA owns 3 Robert St outright)?

  24. So the President lied about "year on year" savings. Any competent person, let alone an experienced accountant would have written "annual".

    It was more subtle to say all forecast savings of £4m (two years hence from when) would be spent as that might be difficult to gainsay.

    Also, having just wasted a couple of million or more, with more to follow before anything kicks-in, it sure does provide a doddle of a base line.

  25. Anon 11.22,

    from memory CIMA is in a fairly good financial position. Most of the money is subs, but there is other income from Mastercourses, publishing and ads in Financial Management.

    I am not sure if they own Chapter Street.

  26. CIMA recently ran a mastercourse on cost saving. I saved some £500 by not bothering to attend.

    I'm pretty sure they don't own their main premises but it's easy (except that their search facility is useless)to check it out on their site.

  27. That ignores the loss of a day's chargeable time say, £3,000.

  28. CIMA don not own Chapter Street.

  29. Using the Kiss Principle you presumably mean CIMA don't have a fee simple.

  30. Mmmmm....

    Looks like CIMA are in for a mugging and CIPFA in for a right royal mugging.

  31. I favour burying the hatchet and to show goodwill I'll refrain from saying more.

  32. Agreed.

    My vote has been cast. However, it will make little difference because we are fools and will collectively vote in favour.

    My only hope is that you good people do not listen to your council.

    Kind regards.

  33. All this talk of financial health, I decided to take a look at the 2004 accounts. Here are the results:

    1. ACCA £353K surplus
    2. CIMA £772K surplus
    3. CIPFA £670K surplus
    4. ICAS £557K surplus

    and wait for it...

    5. ICAEW (£711k) Deficit

    What is Anstee doing.

    Not only that we pay him £353,000 (inc £53,000 bonus).

  34. I wouldn't employ Eric if his sevices were free. ICAEW spending has been prodigal.

    Get Des Hudson, he can probably manage both ICAS & ICAEW if he has a CA for his assistant. Much of the work might be outsourced to Scotland and some discontinued.

    It is usually reported that Eric gets visibly irritated by justified criticism - outright condemnation may cause involuntary spasms.

  35. I agree Eric is useless as it was not necessary to squander £464k on Consolidation expenditure.

    However, £(711)k was the ICAEW Operating deficit - and perhaps not the fairest comparison.

  36. Setting aside one's emotions for a moment. The Cipfa takeover (and that is what it is) does make for good business by Anstee.

  37. Quote from CIPFA forum:

    ICAEW is the Giant and CIPFA is a goose that lays a golden egg.

    Old poem by Anon:

    More geese than swans now live
    More fools than wise.

  38. Ken,

    You are correct. The description CHARTERED ACCOUNTANT will become meaningless if the merger happens.


  39. Ken,

    AAge headline:

    'Name issue shouldn't cloud merger vote' said Anstee.

    The big 15 must surely agree with Eric:

    Now perhaps Anstee can come up with a new name and a new description.

  40. A minute ago Media Strategy still listed ICAEW as a client.

    Are not CIPFA red-faced? They are heavily, and even more widely, associated with this disgrace.

    Accountancy and AccountancyAge are incompetent and choose to ignore this story but that may rebound upon them both.

  41. Anon 2.00pm

    We are “Chartered” Blah Blah Blah. – change the record.

    You are already a dilute Institute. There is the legacy of 10,048 “unclean” from 1957 in your DNA. A bunch of accountants you excluded in 1885 who went on to become The Society of Incorporated Accountants and Auditors. They were not even a chartered body when you combined, for heavens sake.

    The “Chartered” intangible asset means nothing – try debiting that to your balance sheet and give us all a laugh.

  42. As late as 1967 ICAEW members were entitled to describe themselves as chartered accountants SAVE THAT members of the Society of Incorporated Accounts who received their training in local government or similar service had the description Incorporated Accountants and were entitled to use the designatory letters A.S.A.A or F.S.A.A. (Not A.C.A/F.C.A.).

    As a matter of fact the Society's training was exceptionally long and arduous and their qualification was regarded as significantly superior to mere Municipal Treasurers and Accountants.

    Everybody is entitled to such description as they have earned..

  43. To merge with a non-chartered body in the days when training under articles of clerkship had frequently entailed payment of a premium was a massive testimony to the competence and integrity of that Society.

  44. They are still not "Chartered" which means they are "unclean".

  45. CIMA, ACCA and CIPFA were obsessed with obtaining chartered status.

    It is the proper differentiation and thus recognition that matters to many of us - ie Chartered Accountant without the Blah Blah.

    Now it seems you take no pride in your own qualification and its description. If you take no pride why would you expect it from others? It you take any pride then keep your hard-earned qualification to yourselves.

  46. Anon 6.55,
    the only Chartered Accountants without the blah are ICAS members. They are CA's; the rest of us are Chartered something or others.

  47. Your Council is in a process of assimilation.
    We will all join the collective.
    We will all be Chartered Accountants with the Blah
    Resistance is futile.

  48. Anon 7.31,

    Borg off! (with apologies to all Trekkies out there)

  49. I doubt this merger will get enough votes to go ahead.

    I am a newly qualified ACA in London. All the ACAs in my cohort will be voting against.

  50. Reading the wide-ranging criticism of the ICAEW on this site, I'm increasingly unclear about why it's so important to protect it from CIPFA (or indeed any other institute). Could someone explain?

  51. ICAEW is NOT being criticised on this site. ICAEW is made of of its members and they are NOT being criticised.

    Only the merger decision by the ICAEW council is being criticised.

  52. THe ACCA are projected to be the leading accounting body in 2007. This means another merger attempt by ICAEW looks likely in 2008.

    Of course, CIMA & CIPFA may join ACCA instead. There are only so many times that ICAEW members can vote down Council's proposals.

    I doubt that ICAS will merge with ICAEW, they believe small is best and do not share ICAEW strategy of being the biggest and the best.

  53. My second paragraph above shoud read:

    Of course, CIMA & CIPFA may join ACCA instead. They will only take being rejected by ICAEW members so many times.

    For CIPFA this will be the second time in 15 years. I do not think there will be another ICAEW/CIPFA marriage.

  54. Ken

    Picking up on Kamran's point above:

    "the ICAEW would have been better off seeking help from some venture capitalists instead! Don't you think that would have been a better route?"

    You are a business man (and you know a great deal about investment), would you advise a client to invest in ICAEW?

  55. My Yahoo search for MICA revealed that professionals in the financial services sector already use MICA designatory letters!

    Members of a London based professional body, the International Compliance Association use the MICA designation.

    Do we need these awful looking designatory letters?

  56. Anom 10:54

    Re investment question:

    On the pro side, the ICAEW has an excellent brand value

    On the negative side, it is hampered by having an excessively unwieldly Council of 90+

    It needs significant restructuring

  57. I have been thinking about the quality issue.

    How about all members of MICA entering as qualified ACA, FCA, CPFA being required to sit a case study, under exam conditions, before they are allowed to call themselves Chartered Accountants. If one has kept up their CPD this examination would present only a minor inconvenience.

  58. ICAEW money foe.

    I alway believe ICAEW can make up that deficit and turn it into a gain almost immediately. All they need to do is open its doors to qualified european bodies like icai, icas, acca, icpai, etc etc. and charge each new member an exemption fee of 2-3000 pounds each and in no time will the get their deficit to break even.

  59. The ICAEW brand? What are you talking about, the ICAEW Brand only exists in the minds of it members.

    CIMA and ACCA have been working on their brands over the last 15 years and the ICAEW are now out of touch with the next generation of accountants.

    The need to merge is a by-product of this failure to get students.

    ICAEW members have a valuable qualification but in todays market any accounatncy qualification and the right CV are what are need to for a rewarding career.

    ICAEW members should wake up and smell the coffee.