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EY South Africa Splits its Practice

Ernst & Young South Africa has announced that it has officially separated its accounting and consulting units.The consulting unit, which will be called 'Argil Ernst & Young Consulting,' was purchased by Worldwide African Investment Holdings, a major black empowerment group that already has an established relationship with EY, having formed a 60/40 joint venture last year.The new unit's main business focuses will be on the oil industry, telecommunications and financia
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EY Wins Coveted <i>CIO</i> Magazine Award

Ernst & Young was named to the top 50 list of the most impressive intranet sites by CIO magazine.The Web Business 50/50 Award annually honors the top 50 Internet and intranet sites in the marketplace for the best use of technology and design that reflects the organization's goals.
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Lift of Louisiana ban on Fees Good for 1st Global

The recent lift of all bans on commissions and contingency fees has been profitable for Dallas, TX-based 1st Global, a financial services company with more than 1,000 affiliate firms, including 180 large accounting firms.1st Global has enjoyed success in the last several years in recruiting firms to join as affiliates to provide clients financial services of various kinds.Until the ban was lifted in Louisiana, firms operating in the state were prohibited from entering into financial services transactions in which fees and commissions were part of th
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NABA and UT-Austin Join in Minority Recruitment Program

Kudos go to National Association of Black Accountants (NABA), The University of Texas at Austin’s Business School and Ernst & Young who have joined together for the seventh consecutive year to conduct the Accounting Career Awareness Program in mid-July.The program was developed by NABA, where one of the missions is to involve more minority students in accounting.The Red McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas is the site at w
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KPMG Announces New Class of Partners

The new partner mix at KPMG LLP includes personnel in the areas of assurance and advisory services, tax services, and client service support (whatever happened to the designation of "audit partners")? With the addition of 127 new partners, the firm now has more than 7,000 partners worldwide in 159 countries.KPMG Consulting LLC, which was incorporated as a separate company earlier this year, is a leading provider of Internet integration services.
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Nortel Provides Solutions to H&R Block

In an effort to simplify its call center operations, H&R Block has engaged Nortel Networks to provide their e-Business solution, 'Nortel Networks Clarify eFrontOffice.'Block wanted to find a way to take the calls it receives from 10,000 tax offices, including financial services and e-Commerce groups, into one, central call center.Nortel's customer relationship management system, eFrontOffice, will provide Block instant messaging, voice-over-IP and personalized portals by the 2001 tax season.Block is in go
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PwC Admits 600 New Partners

PwC appointed 248 new partners to its U.S. ranks this week. Twenty percent of the total includes women, bringing the total women partners to 374 or 12 percent overall. The partners are in the areas of Assurance & Business Advisory Services (ABAS), Management Consulting Services (MCS), Tax and Legal Services (TLS), Financial Advisory Services (FAS) and PricewaterhouseCoopers' Unifi Network, formerly known as Global Human Resource Solutions, and Internal Firm Services.
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SEC Takes Accounting Firms to the Mat

The SEC today announced plans to curb the accounting profession's participation in various consulting efforts. Concerned that accountants are compromising their ability to perform independent audits, the SEC is trying to force accounting firms to discontinue certain consulting activities or, as some firms have already begun doing, separate the activities completely from their audit practice.Auditing, once the bread and butter of accountants, has dropped from 70 percent to 30 percent of accounting firm revenues, according to an SEC spokesperson.
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An Analysis of Big 5 Independence Issues

A writer for CFO Europe examines the state of the world's Big 5 firms.Topics covered include auditor independence and quality, and how firms should go about separating audit from consulting practices.Click on the link below for the full commentary.
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H&R Block Co-Founder Retires This Fall

Henry W. Bloch (yes, it's spelled right!) is planning to retire from his namesake firm, H&R Block in September. The departure is notable because it marks the first time a anyone with the last name of Bloch has not been at the firm since it began in 1946.The news also comes just after the company's first quarter earnings were announced April 30; earnings were up 10 percent from the same time in 1999.Named to head the firm will be Frank L. Salizzoni, currently CEO, who will become chairman.
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Moss Adams Strengthens Firm With L.A. Acquisition

Group 'B' firm Moss Adams has announced it will merge the Beverly Hills office of Braverman Codron into its practice.According to the Electronic Accountant, the merger provides Moss Adams a total of 27 offices, more than 140 partners and combined, annual revenues exceeding $140 million.Braverman Codron is a multi-faceted practice with nine partners and 45 employees. Annual revenues exceed $6 million.
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ACCPAC Buys SBT Accounting Systems

Mergers and consolidations in the accounting software arena are commonplace these days. Now, it has just been announced that ACCPAC has purchased SBT Accounting Systems.The purchase adds the database accounting capabilities associated with SBT to ACCPAC's line of enterprise products.
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Saltz, Shamis & Goldfarb Press Conference

TUESDAY, JUNE 20, 2000 10:00AM EDTContact Kathy SauttersSaltz, Shamis & Goldfarbwww.ssandg.com(440) 248-8787[Session Moderator] Good morning, and welcome to SS&G Financial Services first press conference over the Internet. I would like to start off by thanking AccountingWEB for allowing us to use their workshop room for this meeting.
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EY Uses CareerBuilder to Recruit New Employees

As a way to recruit new employees into the firm and maximize its efforts, Ernst & Young will post more than 600 new jobs each month through the CareerBuilder network and its affiliates.Since the firm began using the online recruiting Web site, the number of applicants has dramatically increased by 3,000.
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Short-Term Needs Solved with KPMG 'On-Call Advantage'

Executives with short-term consulting needs may now tap into KPMG's newest effort at providing immediate solutions.Termed 'On-Call Advantage,' KPMG styled this program to provide outsourcing services for a variety of business and management tasks, and is using this outsourcing technique as a way of keeping clients' overhead at a minimum.The activities that fall under the umbrella of this new consulting program include finance and accounting outsourcing, policy and procedure manual preparation, restructuring assistance, consultation on executive compensat
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PwC Once Again Faces Independence Problems

PricewaterhouseCoopers has been accused of signing off on erroneous financial statements of MicroStrategy Inc., a PwC audit client as well as supplier of software products that PwC sells to some of its other clients.
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Former PwC Clients Will Debate, Share Stories at new Portal

Facilitating employee feedback, idea sharing and lots of personal services is very hot these days, as more and more employers look for ways to retain and attract good staff in a market teeming with low unemployment.PricewaterhouseCoopers is spinning off its HR consulting practice to Unifi Network LLP, but the bigger news is that Unifi will create portals for current and prospective clients who want to help their employees air their grievances, share stories and provide a company culture.The portal is expected to go
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Bueno! KPMG Begins International Tax Centers

KPMG is embarking on a new effort to serve clients on a global basis by implementing new U.S.-based tax centers.Called 'International Tax Centers of Excellence,' efforts are already underway to serve clients in Latin America, Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, and Spain, and plans are in teh works to include the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, and France.Speaking the language and understanding cultural issues are key in this new venture. As an example, the Americas Center will serve as a tax resource to clients who are doing business in Latin America.
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SEC Offering Amnesty for Independence Violations

The SEC has initiated a look-back program in which all participating accounting firms will subject themselves to independent scrutiny of their financial independence with regard to their audit clients. Participating firms as well as their clients will be provided with a safe harbor from enforcement unless certain serious violations occurred.The look-back program is entirely voluntary, but it is hoped that the amnesty incentive will provide the necessary encouragement for firms to participate.
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KPMG Bets Big Bucks on ad Campaign

J. Walter Thompson is the fortunate recipient of the $90 million KPMG international advertising account.Competitors making the final cut included BBDO and Bates USA, but Thompson was chosen to handle the Big 5 firms' global branding and advertising of services. The first campaign will be ready for the fall.The new campaign will include the firm's four core services in assurance, tax, financial advisory and consulting.

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