We have a strategic priority in enhancing and expanding our portfolio of service offerings. This will be achieved by continuing in investing in our greatest asset, our people
Christos Vasiliou, Managing Director
Total Gross fees33,4m
2018 was a very challenging year for the audit function which has adapted swiftly to the changing economic environment caused by international enhanced regulation and exchange of information. While we have a great deal to be proud of, we know there are things that we must do better. And we are working constantly to improve.
We acknowledge that the emerging compliance requirements relating to our profession require increased control procedures and systems to be utilised in order to monitor and improve the quality of services offered; certainly, the audit profession has changed radically in recent times.
Restoring trust in institutions is of paramount importance and as auditors we have a unique role to play. Our work is critical in creating confidence in capital markets by keeping them informed.
In 2018 we won new and retained the audits of key local (and international) organisations. Through the dedication of our people, having regard to the above, we experienced a 1,5% growth for the practice, raising more than 33 million in terms of the Firm’s total gross audit fees. This is testament to the more than 480 dedicated individuals within our Cyprus audit practice and their commitment to driving up audit quality, our key tenet as a Firm.
We have also been working hard to enhance our processes and investing strongly in technology in order to bring the best to our clients. As one of the major profession catalysts, technology has disrupted the form with which audit services are offered to clients. The introduction of technology will definitely increase the efficiency and quality of audit services offered to businesses and the society in general. KPMG Clara, our new global smart audit platform which is being rolled out, will allow us to provide greater clarity and generate deeper and richer insights into the audit, by deploying digital automation as part of our audit approach.
We acknowledge that 2019 brings a number of challenges across a range of issues, alongside societal expectations. It is vital that we continue demonstrating to the wider public why shareholders and Audit Committees place their trust in us. Always acting with integrity, we will constantly work to optimise our audit opinions in order to remain relevant to the investors and shareholders we serve.
We are committed to playing a pivotal role in finding positive and pragmatic solutions that will enhance trust in our profession. In 2019 we plan to be working towards making our audit services a clear choice for our clients, the society and our people, our most valuable asset.
* staff numbers as of 31st December 2018
Total Gross fees10,2m
2018 was a very challenging year for the tax function. During the year, the tax team participated in advising both large-scale multinational cross-border transactions and large and strategically important local deals and investments. Through the determination and passion of our people, we’ve managed to achieve a 14,9% growth for the practice.
The quick and rigorous development of the tax framework internationally created the need for new international operating models that raise fundamental questions of where and how to tax value. At the same time, tax authorities are stepping up their expectations; the international rules call for greater transparency and vigorous compliance.
Our clients have increasing demands for tooling, compliance strategies and advice to allow them to operate in an efficient and sustainable manner; as such, our team has relentlessly focused on the servicing of clients while creating new paths of service to allow us to cater for their needs.
2019 will be a landmark year for the tax function. With the expansion of the tax framework to comply with international rules, we want to be challenging ourselves to think about the transformation of our business. We need to ensure that we are ready to tackle the hurdles of tomorrow.
The challenges ahead mandate the embracing of different skills and a more integrated mode of working. Our plan is to grow, recruit and invest in different sets of capabilities with the aim to diversify the services offered and provide more integrated solutions to our clients.
Further, we should be looking into attracting diversified minds, thinking outside the box and engaging in a productive dialogue concerning the needs of the future business professional as regards tax compliance, tax reporting and regulation. The function will drive towards a multi-disciplinary approach in response to market demand.
In the context of constant change, we do not forget our responsibility to society and not just our clients. We will continue to act with integrity, in relation to tax, thereby enhancing the trust placed in the quality of our services.
Our commitment to leadership is granted. In 2019 we plan to be working towards making our tax services a CLEAR CHOICE for our clients, the society and our people, our most valuable asset.
* staff numbers as of 31st December 2018
Total Gross fees9,8m
In our Advisory business, we work alongside our clients on their most difficult challenges, delivering value added insights that they can trust and which lead to measurable and sustainable business outcomes. Our Advisory professionals work across the corporate health spectrum covering areas as diverse as profitability, transformation, technology, risk, growth, structure and operations.
This year has been extraordinary for our Advisory practice. We won valuable, challenging work that allowed us to demonstrate the depth of our talent and to help our clients overcome the challenges they face. For the Government of Cyprus we have delivered a range of projects focusing on technology and service transformation and managing and delivering challenging transformative projects, including for the healthcare industry. For our Banking and financial Services clients we have delivered end to end digital transformation projects by assisting to manage and deliver digital transformation programs, data driven strategies, customer experience strategies and even developing and implementing digital solutions. For the same industry, we have provided deep knowledge in assisting our clients manage their non-performing loan portfolios and to manage risk and regulatory compliance. At the core of our client portfolio though, always lie our Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) clients, the backbone of our economy that is now facing numerous challenges. We assist our SME clients to re-define their business models by re-thinking their service and client portfolio, leveraging technology and new human capital management models and optimising their operations.
Our clients often tell us that we work differently. That begins with the way we look at their organisations and approach their problems. We strive to connect and understand our clients and become one with their internal teams. Our professionals are trained to empathise hard with them and see their environment through their eyes and to think deeply about their problem, not just about the solution we want to deliver. To achieve this we apply a multidisciplinary and connected approach to delivering engagements, comprising the right combination of expertise to work on the right solution. For us, this is our standardised approach of a more connected and collaborative business. Our clients tell us that this is a different way of working that resonates both with their employees and their management.
Our strategy has paid off swiftly for us, driving growth by 28% in our Advisory practice from €7,6 million in 2017 to €9,7 million in 2018. This demonstrates the endorsement from our clients. And this means a lot to us. It means that they trust our obsessive focus on valuable outcomes. They trust that our approach delivers results which impact their businesses.
Our clients are extremely important to us. But our staff is our most valuable and important asset. Our business is attracting great talent all the time and this year we welcomed more than 25 new Advisory hires. We are proud to employ highly-skilled and results-oriented professionals with experience from leading Advisory firms worldwide. In the year to come, we will focus on attracting even more talent and accelerating our growth, guided by our winning strategy. We will also continue to invest in technology and innovation on a scale which gives us a competitive advantage and renders our Advisory practice the first choice of employment.
Looking to the future, we will remain focused on both anticipating and responding to the disruption we see all around us. This means running our business in an agile way, embracing change and continuing to invest in talent and technology. All of this will be underpinned by a relentless focus on integrity and trust.
* staff numbers as of 31st December 2018
Proactive communication with all stakeholders and particularly regulators is of vital importance for assessing expectation gaps and for providing clarity for our work
Michalis Antoniades, Chairman
Cyprus offices 6