Mon. Dec 6th, 2021

KPMG’s partners have voted to extend Bina Mehta’s tenure as chair of the UK firm until 2024, as it seeks to continue the disruption caused by the resignation of Bill Michael over comments on a staff video call.

Mehta became the first woman to chair the Big Four accountant when she was hastily appointed in February.

She was installed in the non-executive role when Michael resigned over the intense setback after told employees to “stop moaning” about their working conditions during the pandemic.

Mehta’s term as chairman of KPMG’s board would initially expire after 12 months but was extended by two years until the end of February 2024.

The firm’s 582 partners, which were paid an average of £ 572,000 last year, the incumbent gave their “overwhelming support” by voting in favor of the extension, the firm said Tuesday.

Mehta, who has worked for KPMG for more than 30 years, was the only person put forward for consideration by partners after a selection process run by a “people committee” at the firm.

The M&A and restructuring specialist did not gain control of the day-to-day operations because Michael’s double role as chairman of the board and CEO was split after his resignation.

Jon Holt, former head of audit, was selected in April as CEO to manage KPMG’s business in the UK, which employs more than 15,500 people.

Despite the extension, Mehta’s term will end before Holt’s, which runs until the end of September 2025. The end of their terms has been moved to prevent Mehta and Holt from running for re-election at the same time, KPMG said.

Holt said Mehta’s appointment “provides continuity and stability”.

KPMG has been instructed by the UK Accounting Regulator to improve the quality of its bank audits and face various investigations and legal actions about previous work.

Mehta said her priority will be “to build trust in our profession and ensure that we grow our business in a sustainable and responsible way”.

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