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Grant Thornton UK LLP 2019 Annual Report: stronger foundation for the future

  • Grant Thornton announces 2019 results, reporting a return to growth in the period and stronger operational foundation
  • Results follow period of structural change and investment to create a more focused firm and strategy grounded in Quality, Talent and Value
  • 2019 Transparency Report published alongside results showing progress to further improve audit at Grant Thornton, including the appointment of Philip Johnson to Chair the firm’s Audit Quality Board and ongoing commitment to invest in its audit services
  • Results published as changes to economic landscape continue to impact all businesses and firm takes proactive action in period of uncertainty

Grant Thornton UK LLP has today [07 April 2020] published its annual report [ 1089 kb ], showing a return to revenue and profit growth at the end of 2019.

The results follow a period of structural change and investment by Grant Thornton to create a more focused firm. Major changes included re-organising the way the firm works with clients to focus on clear service line offerings – business advisory, tax and audit; continued investment in talent including recruiting 19 partners and making 25 internal promotions to partner; and continuing to innovate, including launching a number of new digital tools and services such as the Asset Recovery Fund, providing its market-leading team greater access to funding to tackle even larger financial recovery cases around the world.

During the 12 months* to 31 December 2019 the firm’s profits increased by £7 million, an 11% year on year increase. The firm saw significant improvement across all its operations with particularly strong growth in its advisory services and continued demand across audit and tax.

£ million

31 December 2018

12 months

31 December 2019

12 months

Fee income






Trading profit



Dave Dunckley, CEO of Grant Thornton UK LLP, said: “Our return to growth by the end of last year shows that the efforts of everyone at Grant Thornton have created a more focused firm, better placed to serve our clients in the core markets we operate in. We ended the financial period in a much more robust position, with a clear strategy, focused on our strengths and priorities, which has continued into 2020. Clearly, the economic landscape has changed rapidly over recent weeks, but the hard work of our partners and our people during 2019 in implementing our strategy and structure have allowed us to make informed and proactive decisions to help our people and clients manage during this period.”

Grant Thornton has today also published its annual Transparency Report [ 1456 kb ] [ 1456 kb ], including an update on its Audit Investment Plan announced during 2019 to further improve audit quality at the firm. Progress includes the appointment of Philip Johnson as the Chair of the firm’s new Audit Quality Board, a major change to the governance of audit at the firm which will help ensure continuous improvement in audit quality and hold audit practitioners to account. An industry veteran, Philip brings a strong track record of delivering in similar industry roles.

Commenting on the firm’s progress to further improve the quality of its audit work, Dunckley said: “The Transparency Report covers the entire eighteen month period and therefore includes two quieter six month periods and one busier one – this skews our reported profitability. Notwithstanding that, I’m pleased with the progress our audit practice has made to learn from the past and make a number of changes to further improve the quality of our work. Philip’s appointment, alongside a series of wider changes including an investment of £7 million in our audit services, mean we have renewed our ability to ensure continuous improvement of our audit work. This progress matters because public scrutiny of the whole audit profession will rightly continue, and I want to ensure Grant Thornton is well placed to re-enter the FTSE 350 audit market should regulatory and market conditions allow.”

Today’s results are published in the context of significant global economic and social uncertainty in the face of COVID-19. Grant Thornton has put well practised business resilience measures in place to ensure it can continue to support its people and clients as best as possible during this critical period. The firm has taken proactive action across its business to protect its people and clients, including redeploying people to services where demand is expected to remain buoyant and introducing voluntary options to afford its people greater flexibility in managing their personal circumstances during this time. We‘re pleased that we have been able to support the majority of the 150 people who have requested the firm support them in this way. 



*Having changed its financial year end from June to December, the firm’s annual report covers the 18 months from 1 July 2018 to 31 December 2019. For comparative purposes, table above shows 12 month results excluding exceptional and non-recurring items in the period, including the sale of the firm’s wealth advisory business and provisions made in respect of ongoing matters, such as potential claims or fines.