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The Big Four by Stuart Kells, Ian D. Gow

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4

A CURIOUS MATCH

The remarkable founders of the Big Four

Collaboration

Dining together, playing golf together, going to church together – the routines of partnership created a sense of brotherhood and common purpose among accountants. The profession’s self-confidence grew, just as its boundaries became more distinct.

To the extent that there was any competition between the major accounting firms, it was decidedly mild and gentlemanly. The partners collaborated at the ICAEW and in other professional bodies. They moved in the same clubbish circles. Freemasons were prominent in the profession’s early years; George Sneath of Price Waterhouse and Sir Arthur Whinney of Whinney, Smith & Whinney, for example, were both leading members of the Chartered ...

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