– BDO revenues exceed £0.8 billion –
– Growth reinvested into 1,000 more people, quality and technology –
– Profits reduced as partners prioritise record investment in people –
BDO has posted an 11% increase in revenues to £809m for the financial year 2021/22 with growth across all three of its service lines of audit, tax and advisory.
Announcing its results, BDO cited the reasons for growth as being the resilience of its core market of entrepreneurial, high-growth and mid-sized businesses in the face of difficult economic circumstances and the hard work of its people.
The firm has made significant investments in the business after BDO partners made the strategic choice, at the start of the year, to raise levels of investment.
In East Anglia, this includes a focus on recruiting an additional 35 experienced people, promoting 50 employees, committing to the recruitment of nearly 30 trainees to start in the 2022/23 financial year, increasing salaries and investing in quality, new technology and digital applications.
Overall, an additional £70m was invested in people, quality and technology across the entire firm.
The decision to invest in additional people – taking the firm from 6,000 to 7,000 – was designed not only to deal with the increased demand for services but to also promote a healthier work-life balance by spreading workloads across more people.
As a result of the investments and the return to pre-COVID levels of costs, profit before tax was down 8% to £187m. While these high levels of investment mean a planned reduction in FY21/22 profit and partner pay, BDO believes that the focus on longer-term sustainable growth is the right decision.
Peter Harrup, Partner and Head of East Anglia at BDO LLP, said: “Our strong growth this year is down to the resilience of our core market of high-growth, entrepreneurial businesses, combined with the hard work and ability of our people. During such uncertain economic times, businesses like ours need to invest in skills to stimulate growth and, ultimately, the economy. We’re using the proceeds of growth to invest in our people, for the long-term, with an additional emphasis on wellbeing, work-life balance, quality and innovation.
“With significant investment in new talent, across areas such as corporate finance, tax and audit, we have also remained 100% committed to rewarding those within our business who continue to deliver high-quality services to our clients day in, day out.”
All three areas of the overall business – audit, tax and advisory – performed as expected in the 2021/22 financial year.
The national audit business posted revenues of £324m, up 17% on the previous year; with the firm-wide tax practice generating revenues of £199m – an increase of 3%; while BDO’s national advisory revenues grew by 10% to £286m.
Harrup added: “The overriding theme of this and future financial results is the strong focus on the wellbeing of our people and the quality of our work to deliver controlled and responsible growth. That principle forms the basis of how we design, and invest in, our culture and governance.
“The global economy continues to be in a state of upheaval with extreme levels of uncertainty and volatility. Despite these conditions, our business has proven resilient and strong. We’re confident in our future, and firmly believe our investment will consolidate our market position and embed the highest standards of quality ahead of our next stage of growth.”