Peter Cannan and Steve Meyn take the reins at PKF Australia

31 March 2021 2 min. read
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The departure of former PKF Australia CEO and chairman Norm Draper has seen a split in the firm’s top leadership roles, with Peter Cannan and Steve Meyn to take over respective responsibilities.

While recent leadership changes at the Big Four have grabbed all the headlines, another of Australia’s top-ten accounting and consulting firms has quietly announced two top-level executive appointments – with Peter Cannan and Steve Meyn to take on the respective roles of CEO and Chairman for PKF Australia. The appointments follow the retirement of dual PKF chairman and CEO Norm Draper.

According to financial data, PKF is now the tenth largest accounting and consulting network in Australia, with nearly 100 partners and over 750 staff generating revenues in excess of $125 million across member firms in every capital city and beyond. Internationally, the network’s Australia footprint outranks that of its global presence, which sits behind competitors such as Nexia and HLB.

Peter Cannan and Steve Meyn - PKF

Yet, as the elevation of national audit boss Andrew Yates as KPMG’s new CEO and Adam Powick and David Larocca’s respective chief executive handovers at Deloitte and Ernst & Young garner plenty of attention, little has been afforded to that of Cannan and Meyn – with the pair bringing a combined 60-plus years of industry experience to their new roles at PKF Australia.

Peter Cannan

A new recruit, Cannan crosses after more than a decade in a Chief Operating Officer role with Russell Kennedy Lawyers, before which he served for eight years as a General Manager of another of Australia’s top ten accounting firms, Pitch Partners (which itself recently maid a raid on the local Big Four). Prior to that, Cannan spent more than a year as a management consultant with PwC.

Steve Meyn

Meyn meanwhile, PKF Australia’s new Chairman, has spent more than 30 years at the firm, having joined in 1989 on the commencement of a Commerce degree at the University of Newcastle and since come to manage its Sydney and Newcastle offices. For almost the past seven years, Meyn has also served as a Director of PKF’s Asia Pacific wing – a significant growth region for the world’s top accountancy firms.

Meanwhile, former CEO and Chairman Norm Draper bows out after more than four decades with PKF and its predecessors, originally joining in Melbourne in 1979 before taking over the helm for the past seven years. In that time Draper has also served as member of the PKF International board and chair of its global strategy committee, covering in all nearly 450 offices across 150 countries.

“We have had the ability to be agile in our respective markets, pivot and react really quickly and differently, whilst always having the support of the firms in the network,” Draper said of the local firm’s better than expected results last year, amid the global pandemic. “Our people drew confidence from seeing decisions made and actions taken fast as we moulded the model to work with the market.”