EY Australia’s revenue rose by 9.8% to AUD1.785bn ($1.304bn) for the 12 months to 30 June 2018.

The growth was mainly due to an active M&A market, new audit clients, and strong demand for advisory and digital consulting services. 

All of EY Australia service lines and sectors displayed growth with assurance growing strongly and external audit up by 6.3% to AUD375m.

EY said demand from organisations seeking to support their people through change programmes boosted EY’s people advisory services division fees by 11.3%.

EY Oceania Managing Partner and Chief Executive Tony Johnson said: “More companies recognise that investing in a strategic people agenda will drive greater profitability, particularly as teams become more global, diverse and complex, so we expect demand for leadership and culture related services to continue growing.”

There was double digit growth in EY’s transaction advisory services, which the firm said came in part from infrastructure and M&A lead advisory.

Johnson said: “We are currently advising on over $100 billion of new projects – in areas such as health, human services, transport, social housing, water and defence. EY Parthenon’s strategic capability means we are involved in capital events earlier and the broadening of our offering means we are being asked by clients to help with implementation and the realisation of benefits from the transaction.”

While EY was relatively quiet on the acquisition front over the past year, Johnson said this was likely to change in the next year: “Acquisitions absolutely have to be part of the growth strategy, but it has to be measured. We will buy in areas that have the biggest tailwinds behind them, where clients have a real hunger for those services, and where we have pent up demand.”

Next year the firm said it expected advisory to be its fastest growing sector, with Johnson noting he expects especially strong potential from utilising the potential of data analytics and automation to undertake manual tasks.”