Row brewing after BHP appoints KPMG’s UK audit chair Michelle Hinchcliffe to board of directors
A riot breaks out after BHP appoints KPMG’s UK audit chair Michelle Hinchcliffe to its board of directors.
The mining group is a recent client of KPMG, paying the bean counter about £210 million between 2003 and 2019 for audits alone.
Concern: Accountants and investors are now voicing concerns over Michelle Hinchcliffe (pictured) becoming an independent board member
Accountants and investors are now voicing concerns about whether Hinchcliffe can be an independent director. She will leave KPMG and join BHP, the world’s largest miner, in February.
Hinchcliffe will also serve on the company’s risk and audit committee. Her move complies with city rules that say a person can’t join a former client for two years, though an accountant at another accounting firm said such arrangements “always stink.”
Hinchcliffe was a board member of KPMG’s Australian division until 2015, although she never personally worked for the BHP account.
BHP hired Hinchcliffe days after it revealed plans to exit its dual corporate structure and move its primary listing to Australia. This means that it is unlikely to be included in the FTSE 100 index in the future.