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ICAEW Pathways opens doors for chartered accountants

Author: ICAEW Insights

Published: 14 Feb 2024

The ICAEW Pathways programme has led to a burgeoning partnership between two firms in different parts of the world. We find out what others can learn from the experience.

Apurva Chaturvedi, a qualified chartered accountant from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, attributes the success of a global accountancy partnership to the ICAEW Pathways programme, a scheme that allows fully qualified members from eligible professional bodies to apply for ICAEW membership.

Chaturvedi’s global collaboration journey began at an ICAEW New Members Ceremony in London in November 2022, where he was receiving the ICAEW qualification through the Pathways programme. It was there that he met Hans Gobin, Director of UK-based On the Spot Accountants.

That encounter led to the two firms forging a partnership that would allow clients in India and the UK to use each other’s services. Already this year, Chaturvedi and Gobin have signed a large Indian textile manufacturing client that is investing in the UK to set up textile operations.

“Gobin and I will be jointly providing a range of end-to-end integrated services, including accounting, regulation, taxation, compliance and payroll. And it’s all thanks to ICAEW and the ceremony that I attended in London in 2022.”

Despite the success of his collaboration with Gobin, Chaturvedi acknowledges that some UK accountancy firms may be apprehensive to forge similar partnerships with overseas firms due to unfamiliarity with their procedures and rules. He cites GDPR compliance, data security and data privacy as areas that warrant focus.

Due diligence is key, Gobin says. “Assessing viable partners involves scrutinising qualifications, client lists and, crucially, data security measures.”

Pathways can certainly open the door to collaboration, but Chaturvedi says meeting potential partners face-to-face is fundamental to building trust and fostering collaborations.

“I think physical presence is the most important aspect to building a working relationship,” Chaturvedi says. “You need to feel a sense of trust before collaborative talks begin.”

Every year, around 50 members from India join ICAEW through Pathways and Chaturvedi believes growth of the Pathways programme has the potential to foster more international collaborations like the one he established with Gobin.

Gobin, meanwhile, believes both UK- and India-based firms stand to benefit from partnership. “While we’re currently bringing businesses to India, there’s considerable potential for Indian businesses to invest in the UK. The ‘Made in Britain’ tag holds significant appeal globally, presenting avenues for investments and partnerships.”

The ICAEW brand carries significant influence

Having an ICAEW qualification is highly regarded around the world, says Gobin. “It instils confidence, opens doors and assures clients of a strong, certified background. This mutual recognition facilitates smoother collaborations and builds trust in the business relationship.”

A programme such as Pathways is invaluable, Gobin says, as collaboration and economic ties between the UK and India increase. “Opportunities are abundant. With the right platform, professionals can collaborate seamlessly, bringing the comfort and trust needed for successful international partnerships.”

The next submission window for the ICAEW Pathways Programme will be in May 2024, with one more submission window planned throughout the year.

More on Pathways and ICAEW events

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