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Julia Irvine 18 May 2018 11:02am

Two leading FCAs join Kingman FRC review panel

Sir John Kingman has named the 11 members of the panel who will support him during his review of the Financial Reporting Council (FRC)

They include two leading lights of the chartered accountancy profession - Dame Mary Keegan, former chair of the Accounting Standards Board, PwC’s first woman audit partner, founder member of the International Forum on Accountancy Development and former managing director for Government Financial Management, and Teresa Graham, chair of Salix Finance and the HMRC Administrative Burdens Advisory Board, former deputy chair of the Better Regulation Commission, former Baker Tilly partner, former NED of the British Business Bank and author of the review of pre-pack administration.

Both are past winners of the ICAEW Outstanding Achievement Award.

Other members, all of whom come from the senior echelons of business, the investment community and academia, are: Lucinda Bell, former CFO of British Land and non-executive director and audit chair of Rotork plc; Mark Burgess, deputy global chief investment officer and chief investment officer EMEA, Columbia Threadneedle; John Cridland, former director-general of the CBI, who is now chair of Transport of the North and leading the State Pension Age review; Dame Amelia Fawcett, deputy chair of Swedish investment firm Kinnevik, NED board member at the Treasury and NED at State Street Corporation; and Amelia Fletcher, professor of competition policy at the University of East Anglia and an NED at the Financial Conduct Authority, Payment Systems Regulator and the Competition and Markets Authority.

They also include: Simon Fraser, chair of F&C Investment Trust and the Investor Forum; Sir Peter Gershon, chairman of the National Grid, former chair of Tate & Lyle and former CEO of the Office of government Commerce, Nikhil Rathi, chief executive of the London Stock Exchange; and Anne Richards, chief executive of M&G Investments.

The independent review was set up by business secretary Greg Clark following increasing criticism about the way the audit, accountancy and actuarial regulator works and accusations of regulatory capture and an impossible and conflicted brief.

Earlier this year, a joint inquiry by two select committees of MPs into the collapse of Carillion described the FRC as “useless” when it came to Carillion and its auditors, arguing that it was “toothless” and “ineffective” as a regulator.

In response, FRC chief executive Stephen Haddrill argued that the watchdog did not have the ability to look inside the business “more than what is evident from what they publish”, adding that the FRC was one of the most effective audit regulators in the world.

However, he has long argued that the FRC needs greater powers and better resources in order to be more effective.

Sir John and his panel will spend the rest of 2018 assessing the FRC’s governance, impact and powers, with the aim of ensuring the regulator is “fit for the future”. A major consultation with the stakeholder community is planned.

Although the FRC was not prepared to comment on the appointments to the panel, it said that it stood by its comments when the government announced Sir John was to lead the review.

At the time, FRC chair Sir Win Bischoff welcomed the review and said he was “looking forward to contributing positively to it”.

“Meeting public expectations means using our powers effectively, working closely with other regulators and identifying where gaps in those powers exist,” he said, adding that the review would ensure the FRC was best placed to support UK efforts to attract investment in business for the long term.

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