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SMSF Audit pricing under threat


Author: Aleks Vickovich

Accountants will need to move to protect their role in the SMSF sector as auditors come under threat from new technology solutions, according to industry consultant Steve Prendeville.

In his yearly market commentary making predictions for the year ahead, Mr Prendeville, a business broker and M&A consultant at Forte Asset Solutions, predicted that auditors may increasingly be feeling the pressure.

“Accountants need to and will move to protect their participation in the growing SMSF sector,” Mr Prendeville said.

“The pricing of SMSF audits (average $3,000) is under threat [from] technology or product provider subsidised offers.

“For client and revenue retention they will be pushed into acquisition or merger activity. There were significant joint ventures entered into in 2013, but there are also many who are unsatisfied by the outsourcing solution and will seek to bring the advice service in-house.”

The business broker anticipated that as a result, accountants are likely to be on the lookout for attractive business acquisitions in months ahead in order to “protect and grow their SMSF offering”.

Mr Prendeville also reflected that while industry super funds are growing in terms of membership, they are losing funds under management – “primarily to the SMSF market”.

“Industry funds have been attracting experienced management over the years and they recognise that there is a significant need and opportunity to have a meaningful presence in the advice market.”