Christopher Pyne joins EY Australia to help grow Defence practice

17 July 2019 Consultancy.com.au

Big Four accounting and advisory firm EY appears to be developing its defence profile in Australia, to which end it has now made a high-profile appointment to its operations. Former Defence Minister of Australia Christopher Pyne now joins EY to help expand its defence services segment.

Pyne resigned from his post in the Federal Parliament In May this year, and his appointment to EY lies under the radar of any conflict of interest regulations, given that EY doesn’t fit within the bracket of lobbying firms. As a result, despite Pyne’s positions in the Defence and Defence Industry ministries, he can now work in the Defence sector in a private capacity.

Defence spending in Australia is rapidly on the rise. The country is set to invest more than $200 billion over the next ten years, $50 billion of which are earmarked for submarines and $35 billion for frigates. The private sector in Australia is now moving to capitalise on this scenario.

EY is among these firms. The global professional services firm has been expanding in every domain across the Australian market, which includes substantial investments in the digital space. The firm’s revenues have been growing at nearly 10% in the country, and this latest foray into the defence sphere is likely to boost this growth.

Pyne is also here to help lead conversations about what all states need to do to meet the challenges and opportunities this defence investment will bring,” he added.

“The Australian government is engaged in the largest expansion of our military capability in our peacetime history – around $200 billion over 10 years out to 2026.”

Pyne is familiar with the regulatory and strategic atmosphere in Australia’s defence policy, and will be in a strong position to advise the firm’s new venture. Speaking to the Australian Financial Review, Pyne said that he was, “looking forward to providing strategic advice to EY, as the firm looks to expand its footprint in the defence industry.”

EY’s defence operations are based in South Australia under the supervision of Partner at the firm Mark Stewart. The firm’s work in the defence space also extends to Canberra. Stewart has expressed his satisfaction with Pyne’s arrival to help expand the scope and quality of these operations.

“Right now the Australian government is engaged in the largest expansion of our military capability in our peacetime history – $200 billion over 10 years out to 2026 with an ambition to build Australian science, technology, engineering, innovation and industrial capability,” said Stewart.

“EY sees a role in helping the industry aggregate but also develop their capability to win and execute on work either in their own right or with primes. Christopher Pyne is also here to help lead conversations about what all states need to do to meet the challenges and opportunities this defence investment will bring,” he added.


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