Merger: PPB and PwC on cusp of consummation?


PPB Advisory chairman Ian Carson.


PwC Australia CEO Luke Sayers.

Maybe the 2016 merger with Litmus was just the beginning for PPB Advisory (PPBA) with SiN’s M&A network revealing that the national consulting, restructuring and insolvency practice founded by Max Prentice, Steve Parbery, and Vince Barilla in 1983 is discussing a merger with PwC.

The merger talks – confirmed by well-placed sources – were said to be well advanced but neither firm would confirm or deny the reports when contacted late yesterday.

PPBA chairman Ian Carson did not respond to voicemails or texts. Chief executive Daniel Bryant likewise did not respond to texts or voicemails. Even PPB’s relatively loquacious external PR spokespeople kept shtum.

SiN’s efforts to prise a comment out of PwC meanwhile yielded a brief statement confirming little more than the mutual regard each outfit has for the other.

“PwC and PPB Advisory have long enjoyed a mutually respectful relationship,” a PwC spokeswoman said.

“We are not going to comment on market speculation about how we might work together in the future.”

PwC of course has already had an opportunity to taste and digest the PPBA brand, having picked up the firm’s agribusiness division led by Greg Quinn in 2016.

SiN’s mail is that the talks are at the term-sheet stage so we may hear more sooner rather than later, assuming there are no obstacles that longstanding mutual respect can’t surmount.

About the Author

Peter Gosnell
Insolvency News Online illuminates the practice of insolvency Australia-wide, highlighting the triumphs and travails of the nation’s registered practitioners and the accounting and legal professionals who work with them. INO is produced by Peter Gosnell, former business editor and senior business reporter at The Daily Telegraph newspaper. During a decade-long career, your correspondent reported on such notable corporate collapses as HIH, One.Tel, Westpoint and Fincorp as well as some of the nation's highest profile bankruptcies and the investigations and prosecutions arising from Australia's most notorious instances of white-collar crime.

5 Comments on "Merger: PPB and PwC on cusp of consummation?"

  1. It would be interesting timing given the current investigation into the liquidation and bankruptcy files handled by David Leigh, former partner of PPB. How would such merger impact investigation into Leigh’s historical files?

  2. No impact my guess. Investigation complete and found nothing anyway is what I heard. Good buy for PwC if they can get them.

  3. I really can’t fathom this from the perspective of either party.

    PwC get a tiny addition to their revenue footprint of $2b; an addition that will soon find itself conflicted out of much of the work that it does.

    PPB get to be a tiny add-on to a behemoth – lose their independence, and get conflicted on much of the work they currently do.

    The only winners are surely KordaMentha, McGrath Nicol and Ferriers – who see a large competitor on Syndicated work vanish into the abyss that is PWC.

  4. Aren’t McGrathNicol going into one of the other B4?

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