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September 26, 2010

BearingPoint buyout fuels Deloitte’s US growth

Deloitte’s acquisition of BearingPoint’s North American public services practice has helped the firm report a revenue increase of 2% to $10.94bn in the year to 29 May 2010.

The firm’s powerful consulting business is now its major breadwinner, contributing $4.49bn in revenue, which is an $839m increase from the year before.

This is 41% of overall revenue and represents a huge increase from last year when consulting pulled in just over a third of business.

Deloitte’s audit and risk service line contributed $3.72bn, which is 34% of the overall revenue, while tax brought in $2.3 billion – both services suffering under current economic conditions.

Consulting is king

These results underline the growing importance of consulting services to the Big Four. Gone are the days when the largest accounting firms are audit heavy as there is now a preference to invest more in consulting, which is seen as a more profitable business.

The revenue contractions of Deloitte’s other core businesses follow trends reported elsewhere in the world; fee pressure and competition is squeezing the profitability out of audit while a general slowdown in M&A is affecting tax.

Deloitte increased the number of its employees by nearly 8% to 45,730 although this is due to the BearingPoint acquisition in 2009, which added 4,250 employees.

The other Big Four are yet to announce their annual results but it is unlikely they will grow as much as Deloitte if the firm’s audit and tax results are an indication.

Earlier this month, Deloitte announced its global revenue increased by 1.8 % to $26.6bn, momentarily inching ahead of rival PricewaterhouseCoopers.


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