The FINANCIAL — The PwC network reported total global gross revenues of US$35.4 billion for the fiscal year ended on 30 June 2015. At constant exchange rates, PwC’s total global revenues rose by 10%. This is up markedly from the previous year and the strongest year-on-year growth that the network has seen since FY2007. Growth was strong across all lines of business and in all geographic regions.
“The global business environment remains challenging, with a continuing patchy economic picture, geopolitical issues creating uncertainty for business and fierce competition in the professional services market. Despite these challenges the PwC network performed exceptionally well in FY15 with growth of 10%, pushing revenues over the US$35 billion mark for the first time,” said Dennis M. Nally, Chairman of PricewaterhouseCoopers International Ltd.
“Our strongest growth for eight years is a result of the significant investment we have made in recruiting the best people, enhancing the quality of our services and building new product offerings such as data analytics. We have also continued to make key strategic acquisitions to complement and expand our core business.
“Technology is transforming all aspects of our lives and every business, so we are working in alliances with market leaders such as Google and others, to bring the latest and best technology thinking to our clients.
“The PwC brand has been acknowledged as the strongest professional services brand in the world and this reputation is built on the energy, enthusiasm and quality of our 208,000 people and their commitment to working with all of our stakeholders to build trust and to solve important problems.
“There’s much to be proud of and I think we have strong momentum going into FY16 with many significant accomplishments to build on. All of our lines of business and geographic regions are growing, the acquisition of Booz & Company (now Strategy&) has provided a major boost to our capabilities and we are now the leading organisation in our ability to provide services ranging from strategy right through to execution. We recruited 53,000 new people last year and plan to recruit even more in FY16 from a broader range of countries and with a wide range of skills, as we expand our capabilities to match the increasingly diverse demands of our stakeholders.
“While there is large variation around the world and some countries will continue to struggle, overall we predict stronger global economic growth of 3.6% in 2016,” added Dennis Nally.
PwC member firms in North America and the Caribbean continued to grow very strongly with revenue growth of 12%. Our largest firm, PwC US, enjoyed an impressive year with revenues up 10% to US$12.2 billion and strong growth in all lines of service.
Revenues from South and Central America remained buoyant, up 8% – although this growth is down from the previous year impacted by the tough ongoing economic conditions in Brazil.
Revenue growth in Asia was also strong in FY15 up by 9% to US$4.1 billion. PwC’s continued focus on service development and expansion in Asia paid dividends with PwC’s firms in China and Hong Kong growing by 8% and India by 17%. While the economic situation in China looks more challenging in the year ahead, we continue to be optimistic and believe we are well placed to enjoy growth in the year ahead.
Growth also increased impressively across Europe with revenues up 8% in Western Europe and 6% in Central and Eastern Europe. The UK firm, PwC’s second largest, also performed strongly with revenues up 9% to US$4.1 billion, recording particularly good growth in its Assurance and Advisory services. PwC’s firms in Italy grew by 11%, Germany 8% and France 6%.
PwC enjoyed double digit growth in the Middle East and Africa with revenues up 16%.
Growth was also good across the Australasia and the Pacific Islands region with revenues up by 11% with strong growth in Australia where revenues grew by 10%.
Lines of business
The PwC network’s Assurance operations are our most significant business and the bedrock of our operations and reputation across the world. Revenues from PwC’s Assurance operations grew very strongly, up 6% to US$15.2 billion. This was in the face of a very competitive market and the changes taking place in the European audit market due to the introduction of mandatory audit firm rotation.
In addition to a volatile market for audit around the world, there is increasing demand for broader Assurance services and in particular assurance over business risks. Our investment in technology continues to expand the market for Assurance services into new areas such as IT and data assurance and security.
Quality is at the heart of PwC’s operations around the world. In FY15 alone we invested US$450 million (similar to investments in previous years) to further enhance the quality of our assurance services, develop innovative tools and technologies, and train our people.
PwC’s Advisory operations posted very strong growth in FY15 increasing by 18% to US$11.2 billion. Advisory now accounts for more than 30% of PwC’s revenues, and we anticipate that it will continue to grow strongly into the future.
The acquisition of Strategy& (formerly Booz & Company) in April 2014 has helped cement PwC’s position as the leading organisation which can provide advice from strategy through execution. PwC now has over 3,000 strategy consulting professionals under the Strategy& brand.
PwC’s Tax operations also grew strongly in FY15, with revenues increasing by 7% to US$8.9 billion. Tax operations benefited from increased mergers and acquisitions related work due to the robust deals environment, and strong demand for transfer pricing work globally.
Being the number one professional services network, PwC needs the best talent. PwC welcomed record numbers to the network, adding 53,049 people in FY15, including 24,600 graduates. Our global headcount grew 6% to more than 208,000 people, which reflects the exceptional opportunities for development and advancement PwC offers, according to PwC.
Dennis Nally added: “We believe an increasingly diverse workforce will make PwC even more successful in the future. It’s absolutely critical for us to create an environment where all of our people can grow and have the chance to reach their full potential. This is why we are supporting the UN Women’s gender equality movement HeForShe this year and asking PwC men to commit to helping remove barriers to gender equality.”
In FY15, PwC firms and people donated nearly US$58 million to community activities and more than 58,000 PwC people donated more than 537,000 hours in professional services and skilled volunteer activities.