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Sunday 22 September 2019

Chief executive of accountancy watchdog to quit

Stephen Haddrill has served for almost nine years.

The FRC has come in for stinging criticism (Kirsty O’Connor/PA)
The FRC has come in for stinging criticism (Kirsty O’Connor/PA)

By Ravender Sembhy, Press Association City Editor

Stephen Haddrill, the chief executive of Britain’s accountancy watchdog, has confirmed he will step down next year.

The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) said on Friday that his exact departure date will depend on “a number of factors”, including the publication of John Kingman’s review of the FRC.

The review was launched as the watchdog came under intense criticism following a series of high-profile company collapses, such as construction giant Carillion and former high street stalwart BHS, that have damaged trust in the regulator and auditors.

I am incredibly proud to have led the FRC for nearly nine years. However, I believe it should be the job of a new chief executive officer to lead the FRC when the way ahead is decided Stephen Haddrill

The FRC said the search for Mr Haddrill’s successor, and any agreed transition period with that appointment, will affect his departure date.

Mr Haddrill said: “I am incredibly proud to have led the FRC for nearly nine years. However, I believe it should be the job of a new chief executive officer to lead the FRC when the way ahead is decided.

“In the meantime, I remain fully committed to taking forward the FRC’s important programmes on audit reform, investor stewardship, corporate reporting and preparing the FRC for EU exit.”

Mr Kingman, the Legal & General chairman, will examine ways to remove conflicts of interest, including a proposal that large listed firms should have their auditors appointed by a public body.

FRC chairman Sir Win Bischoff said: “I would personally like to thank Stephen and also on behalf of the board, committees and councils of the FRC for his leadership and commitment over this significant period in our history.”

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