Julia Irvine 11 Aug 2017 10:44am

KPMG wins Premier Energy audit

KPMG is to take over the audit of Premier Energy & Water Trust after previous auditors EY stepped down yesterday

The move, which is subject to shareholder approval at the 2018 agm, follows a competitive tender.

Last week in its half-year report, the investment trust disclosed that “in accordance with best practice” it had decided to put its audit out to tender, and that, since EY had been in post since 2003, the Big Four firm had decided not to retender.

In yesterday’s announcement to the market, the Trust said that KPMG’s appointment as auditors was the result of a competitive tender and the firm would take over for the financial year ending 31 December 2017.

The trust also revealed last week that it had underperformed the All-World Utilities Index benchmark in the six months to June by a wide margin (2.1% v 5.5%).

Chairman Geoffrey Burns also expressed concern about the “noticeable stepping up in the anti-utility rhetoric engaged in by politicians and the press”.

“The portfolio is invested in those companies with economically regulated assets, which are in theory therefore less politically exposed. However, we are concerned that the worsening environment could colour the regulators’ thinking over the long term.”