Wednesday, October 05, 2005

First Minister of Scotland Backs ICAS in Name Dispute

The First minister of Scotland, Jack McConnell, has given his backing to ICAS's objections to the proposal by ICAEW and CIPFA to call the newly merged accounting body (if they win the merger vote) The Institute of Chartered Accountants.

McConnell is quoted in Accountancy Age as saying that the name would give a "false sense of representational status" to the merged body.

ICAS have confirmed that McConnell would complain to the Privy Council "if required".

ICAS state, in a press release, that:

"..ICAS has been deluged by a membership response from around the world entirely opposed to the name change and is heartened by the support of other Institutes..".

Des Hudson Chief Executive of ICAS said:

"The backing of the First Minister, Scotland's highest constitutional office holder, is terrific news for ICAS and an endorsement of the role of CAs in Scottish, UK and Global business. It is a very important step in ending this proposal.."

Needless to say ICAEW chief executive, Eric Anstee, is trying to push this under the carpet; by saying that "the name issue should not cloud voting".

The failure of the ICAEW to handle the name issue shows just how badly they have thought through the whole merger proposal.

The name issue is a clear example of the failure of leadership and planning shown by the Council, and the executive team, at the ICAEW.

I trust and assume that there will be resignations a plenty, once the members of the ICAEW have voted against the merger.

Vote for change, vote against the merger.


  1. When CIMA, ACCA and CIPFA were allowed to use the term “chartered” in their designations, each of ICAI, ICAS and ICAEW objected to the word chartered but the Privy Council still allowed it.

    Meaning, until the Privy Council reject it formally, there is still a chance that the new name will be approved.

  2. There are teething problems in all mergers. Our council will listen to all stakeholders and propose the most appropriate name for the merger body.

    The important thing is than we do not let minutia cloud our judgment.

  3. How about we ask Media Strategy to come up with a name:

    The Global Institute of Chartered Accountants of the World.

  4. kamran

    LOL - You are of course correct.

  5. If ICAEW don't immediately disassociate themselves from Media Strategy then I believe it would be inappropriate (in view of the EDM) for the Privy Council to consider anything.

    What would Jack McConnell and Des Hudson say about that?

  6. Kamran,

    I do not believe that Accountancy Age are even handed but you might e-mail them an extract from the previous comment together with a few relevant choice comments of your own.

  7. Just read the October 2005 edition of accountancy.

    I laughed out loud at page 5 where E&Y have told their employees to vote in favour of the merger, and laughed even more at the bit where other employers are being urged to do the same.

    The time has come for you to swallow your pride and admit that CIPFA is the goose that lays the golden egg.

    If you do not take this cash cow now then ACCA or CIMA will - then where will you be.

  8. Are you sure you mean cash cow?

    You probably think Billy Connelly amusing - he has never raised the tiniest flicker of a smile with me.

    R Barker and T Cooper would often make me smile and sometimes make me laugh.

  9. Anon 10.35


    CIPFA with 13,000 members generates £40mm income.
    ICAEW with 120,000 members generates £50mm income.

    ICAEW need to milk CIPFA for all it is worth to subsidise it's own activities.

  10. Then perhaps CIPFA will see the light come the 25th.

    If they do not, they can probably change their mind at any time regardless of member votes - ICAEW can (and did).

    Would Prof Prem venture an opinion since he has some personal knowledge of the law and chartered bodies.

  11. I suggest "The Institute of Bartered Accountants" would be appropriate. Especialy as Eric says the name is not important.

  12. When will CIPFA realise which is the superior institute.

    ICAEW with it's "chartered" intangible asset.


    CIPFA with it's hard cash.

  13. Read Page 30 of accountancy October 2005 - Arguments in favour.

    It says "integration will allow additional resources to be invested in maintaining the reputation and standing of members".

    More proof that all ICAEW wants is CIPFA's money.

  14. Eric mumbles about competitors. What does he think Grant Thornton, Deloitte etc. are

    My advice to clients is use competent smaller firms and my advice to students will be sign up to ICAS - massive damage can and will be inflicted on ICAEW/CIPFA from but a handful of voices.

    ICAEW have blasted away well over a million needlessly and there was no need for outright deception. They have caused bitterness with ICAS and some overseas bodies and amongst vast numbers of their own members.

    There are none so blind as those that cannot see.

  15. Also read page 32 : Pooling resources and saving costs, second papagraph.

    It is all about the money that will be available to ICAEW.

  16. Anstee admits he knows nothing about public policy and by implication Freer admits he knows nothing about business.

    Anstee insists that he has heard no 'cogent' aguments against the merger plans in the 15 months since they were announced. If one assumes the position of an ostritch one probably can't hear.

    It is not possible to fool some of the members any of the time but ...

    When are the dates for the major public service announcements. There is a timetable for everything else.

  17. Any in favour who care or dare to comment here?

  18. Fellow Accountants

    The ICAEW must do something if it is to halt the decline suffered over the past few decades. I am not so blinkered that I can see that the ACCA and CIMA are on course to overtake us. The "Chartered" brand is not what it once was. We can argue that they do not have the same standards as us, but at the end of the day it is the customer (stakeholders, employers and public) who are king. They, not us, will decide who is the best. Accountancy has become a commodity.

    There is no point in us seeking a union with ICAI and ICAS. We should accept once and for all that they do not want us. We need to move on, and stop behaving as a love sick teenager.

    There is much talk about the hidden agenda, but the fact is that ICAEW and CIPFA need each other. They are stronger together than apart as each has strength in different areas.

    We are not diluting the brand, it has been in steady decline for many a year and will continue to do so if we do nothing.

    I will be voting in favour of the merger. Of course I will morn the passing of the Institute, but I will rejoice in the birth of the new one.

    I leave you with this:

    Britain once had a motorcycle industry. The Japanese came along, but the British Industry did not adapt and was resistant to change. Where is the British motorcycle industry now?

  19. I read Elizabeth Harris has just joined CIPFA as its assistant director of operations in its education and training department.

    In the first place why take on extra staff at this time; but since she managed the implementation of IT systems at CIMA (Ho Ho Ho) she is probably and hopefully a low paid trainee.

  20. Motor cycle riders are accident prone - the fewer the better. I would not want any child of mine to ride one. Do you seriously think a merger of local firms would have saved the day?

  21. ICAEW Council has a strategic plan don't you know. Didn't they say the merger is unimportant as it will merely speed things (I'm not sure what things) up a little.
    Motor cycles are probably the quickest transporter for many journeys.

  22. CIPFA members will continue with their work, as will ACCA and CIMA members.

    So it is a question of money. If ICAS can actually prosper with a mere 16,000 members then head hunt Des Hudson and by all means have Eric Anstee head hunted.

  23. Graham Massie FCA is a director for Effective Dispute Resolution. I favour slapping Eric about the face a few times to get his attention; then pistol(note the singular)at dawn.

    Alternatively, Russian Roulette with all of the chambers loaded could be effective.