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August 18, 2008

News Briefs

Consultancy firm joins PwC… Court approves KPMG Canada overtime redress plan… Grant Thornton maintains AIM market position…

MERGERS AND ACQUISITIONS Consultancy firm joins PwC

PricewaterhouseCoopers Australia (PwC) has acquired consultancy firm Franchise Developments Management Consulting. The Melbourne-based firm provides national specialist strategy and consulting expertise, including development and documentation. It will now be integrated into PwC’s private client services team.

PwC national managing partner Doug McCluskey said: “The acquisition will broaden and deepen PwC’s expertise in franchising, enabling us to provide an additional dimension of strategic advice to private businesses wanting to grow in domestic and offshore markets.” LEGAL Court approves KPMG Canada overtime redress plan

KPMG Canada has announced the court approval for an Overtime Redress Plan (ORP) for the settlement of a class action against the firm for unpaid overtime. The ORP, which the firm established in February, was designed to ensure that all eligible current and former employees were fairly compensated, according to the relevant provincial laws, for all statutory unpaid overtime since 1 January 2000.

KPMG chief executive Bill MacKinnon said: “We are very pleased that KPMG’s ORP has now been approved by the court. When the claim was commenced in September 2007, we conducted a thorough investigation of our work practices. At that time, we promised that we would directly and fairly address our employees’ concerns about unpaid statutory overtime. The prompt implementation of the ORP in February of this year delivered on our commitment.” AUDIT Grant Thornton maintains AIM market position

Grant Thornton continued its dominance of the UK Alternative Investment Market (AIM) according to the latest Hemscott auditor rankings. The mid-tier firm, with 228 clients, and KPMG, 185 clients, held on to the top two spots despite each posting a four-client loss. Deloitte bucked the trend of client losses by increasing its number of AIM clients by three to 139. This put it in third place, tied with BDO Stoy Hayward. KPMG continues to lead in the financial sector with 63 clients, ahead of Grant Thornton with 45. Grant Thornton continued to assert its dominance as the auditor with the most clients in the industrials, consumer goods, consumer services and technology sectors.

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