Back in early October, the Going Concern prognostication team (me, Adrienne, and three people eating lunch at Panda Express) predicted that KPMG’s global revenue for fiscal year 2018 would be $28.1 billion. With word today that KPMG reported global revenue of $28.96 billion for the fiscal year that ended on Sept. 30, 2018, we were pretty damn close.
The good news, Klynveldians, is your firm’s revenue is up 9.7% in U.S. dollar terms and 7.1% in local-currency terms from FY 2017’s revenue of $26.4 billion. The bad news is KPMG is still fourth-largest among the Big 4 firms:
Looking at KPMG regions, Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMA) led the way with $12.98 billion in revenue, followed by the Americas at $11.1 billion and Asia Pacific at $4.88 billion.
All three of the firm’s business lines—audit, tax, and advisory—had higher revenue growth in FY 2018 than in FY 2017:
- Advisory: 9.9% growth, $11.47 billion (6% growth in 2017)
- Audit: 4.8%, $11.15 billion (3.1% in 2017)
- Tax: 6.3%, $6.34 billion (5.9% in 2017)
“We are making record investments in our business to help clients capitalize on the unprecedented transformation they are going through,” said KPMG International Chairman Bill Thomas in a statement. “We are committed to continuously improving the quality of every service we provide, recognizing the vital role we perform for clients and capital markets.”
KPMG’s worldwide headcount is now at 207,050, with 106,396 warm bodies employed in the EMA region, 57,447 in the Americas, and 43,207 in the Asia Pacific region. Of those 207,050 Klynveldians, 53% are men and 47% are women. The firm touted that 28% of new partners promoted internally in 2018 were female.
As Michael Rapoport reported today in the Wall Street Journal, the Big 4 firms’ combined global revenue rose more than 10% in 2018, their strongest annual growth since at least the 2008 financial crisis. The previous recent high was 9% in FY 2011.
Executives at the Big 4 attributed the increase in revenue to a strong economy, their investments in new technologies, and increased demand for their services among corporate clients grappling with the pace of economic and technological change, according to the WSJ article.
Rapoport also noted that the Big 4 firms’ revenue from consulting and other advisory work grew faster than revenue from auditing in 2018, as it has for the past several years.