KPMG shuffles senior leadership in the South Pacific

10 April 2023 11 min. read
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KPMG has shuffled its senior leadership in the South Pacific, with Zanie Theron taking over the regional reins from Michael Yee-Joy and Ces Iewago replacing her as managing partner in Papua New Guinea.

Papua New Guinea managing partner Zanie Theron has been named as KPMG’s new head for the South Pacific region, which aligned with Australia in mid-2021.

Theron will replace Fiji-based Michael Yee-Joy, who retires after four decades at thefirm, while Papua New Guinea based senior partner Ces Iewago steps into the top local role. In addition to its Fiji and PNG offices, KPMG’s South Pacific region includes work in the Solomon Islands, Samoa, Tonga and Nauru.

Zanie Theron and Ces Iewago - KPMG

Theron has been with KPMG in Port Moresby for close to the past seven years, first joining the firm in 2016 after more than a decade and a half as an auditor with Deloitte between Pretoria, Canberra, Perth and Papua New Guinea, ten of those years as a partner. Previously, she spent eight years as a legal officer with the SouthAfrican Department of Defence, and earlier completed a law degree with theUniversity of South Africa while serving in the navy.

“I am looking forward to working with the people and cultures of our region and help support productivity and growth,” Theron said of her new role. ”I would also like to recognise the contribution made by Michael who has overseen KPMG’s expansion across the South Pacific. This includes helping set up the Fiji Dynamix which now has more than 70 dedicated team members, and welcoming a record number of graduate hires to the firm earlier this year.”

The firm’s regional expansion overseen by Yee-Joy includes last month’s acquisition of specialist Microsoft consultancy Acton in Fiji, as well as the coming opening of a dedicated new office in Nadi and Suva upgrade – with plans to boost its local headcount to 500 staff over the next three years.

With a background in accounting, Yee-Joy has been a partner at KPMG for almost thirty years, and took over as partner-in-charge in Fiji in 2002.

Meanwhile, Papua New Guinea national Ces Iewago will take over from Theron, and stated his intention to focus on developing local talent and building up the firm’s home-grown leadership stocks over the next few years. Iewago joined KPMG toward the end of last year, and previously served for more than a decade as the chairman of the New Guinea Gold Corporation, with a background in the resources, financial services and government sectors.

KPMG Australia’s Enterprise practice national managing partner Paul Howes expressed his confidence in Theron and Iewago to lead the firm’s next phase of growth across the region. “We have two experienced and able leaders in Papua New Guinea and the South Pacific who have a focus on client needs and also enjoy outstanding connections. They both understand the need to deliver value. We are committed to assisting the businesses and people of the region.”