PwC hikes bonuses after ‘mind-blowing’ rise in deals
Kevin Ellis: ‘It’s a deals-led recovery’
Britain’s biggest accountancy firm PwC will hike bonuses for staff this year after a surge in profits fuelled by a “mind-blowing’ rise in deals.
Partners will receive an average payment of £818,000 for the year to the end of June, plus a sum of around £50,000 relating to one-off items, including the sale of its tech platform.
That compares to a payout of £685,000 last year and a pre-Covid £765,000 in 2019.
The UK bonus pot was increased to a record £128 million, from £113m before the virus struck.
The firm has about 22,000 employees in the UK of which 940 are partners. It recruited 3,300 over the last 12 months.
The leap in bonuses follows a 25% rise in profit for the financial year to £1.17 billion based on strong demand in audit, deals and transformation services as client activity rebounded.
However, profits were flattered by lower business travel costs due to pandemic restrictions. Revenue increased by 2% year-on-year to £4.5bn, with deals revenue rising by 9% to £854m.
The UK has seen record takeovers and mergers so far this year, leading to rising demand for professional services and advice.
Kevin Ellis, chairman and senior partner, said: “It is a deals-led recovery. The deal level is mind-blowing.”
He added: “After a challenging first six months where we held our nerve, made no redundancies and honoured job offers, we were well-placed to meet demand and create investment capacity as confidence in the market picked up.
“Like our clients, we see the pandemic recovery as a catalyst of profound change, driving increased demand for our deals, financing, digitisation, ESG [environmental, social and corporate governance] and supply chain transformation services.”
Demand for transformation advice, including finance transformation and digital and data strategies as clients move to the cloud, were key drivers of second half growth.
This was accompanied by increased demand for services such as decarbonisation plans and designing and delivering hybrid working strategies.
Mr Ellis last month said staff being away from the office too much will blight the careers of young professionals as they will miss out on camaraderie and the opportunity to learn from their seniors.
His comments were made despite the firm telling staff in March that they can spend around half their working hours at home and end work early on Fridays in the summer.