Demystifying KPMG: What Does the Acronym Stand For?

If you've ever wondered what KPMG stands for, this article is for you! Join us as we dissect the origins, values, and vast array of services offered by KPMG, shedding light on its role in the realm of auditing, tax advisory, and consultancy.

Posted July 5, 2023

Free Event

Consulting Week (Apr 15-18)

Monday, April 15

10:00 PM UTC · 60 minutes

Table of Contents

KPMG is one of the largest accounting and professional services firms in the world, providing a range of services to clients across various industries. In this article, we'll take a deep dive into the history, services, culture, and leadership team of KPMG, as well as the impact of technology and career opportunities at the firm. By the end of this article, you'll have a comprehensive understanding of what KPMG is all about!

The History and Background of KPMG

KPMG was founded in 1987 as the result of a merger between Klynveld Main Goerdeler (KMG) and Peat Marwick International (PMI). Notably, KPMG stands for Klynveld Peat Marwick Goerdeler, which represents the last names of the four founders of the accounting firm. KMG and PMI had long histories and impressive reputations in their respective regions. KMG was founded in the Netherlands in 1917, while PMI had its beginnings in the United States in 1870.

With the merger, KPMG became one of the "Big Four" accounting firms in the world, alongside Deloitte, EY, and PwC. The firm provides audit, tax, and advisory services to clients in numerous industries, including financial services, healthcare, energy, government, and more.

The Founding and Growth of KPMG

As mentioned, KPMG was the result of a merger between KMG and PMI. But what led to this merger, and how did KPMG grow into the global powerhouse it is today?

First, let's look at KMG, which was founded in the Netherlands in 1917. KMG was initially focused on providing audit services to companies in the Dutch manufacturing sector, but the firm quickly expanded to other industries and regions. In the decades leading up to the merger with PMI, KMG formed partnerships with other accounting firms in Europe, Canada, and Australia, setting the stage for its future global expansion.

PMI, on the other hand, had its roots in the United States. The firm was founded in 1870 by William Barclay Peat and James Marwick, and provided accounting services to clients in industries such as textiles, railroads, and mining. Over time, PMI expanded its services to include tax and advisory services, and also developed a strong presence in international markets.

When KMG and PMI merged in 1987, they created KPMG International, which was initially based in Amsterdam. Since then, the firm has continued to expand its services, locations, and client base and now has over 200,000 employees in 147 countries.

KPMG's Global Presence

With 147 countries in which it operates, KPMG has a truly global presence. This global reach enables the firm to serve clients across multiple jurisdictions and industries, and to access a diverse range of talent and expertise.

But how does KPMG maintain consistency and quality across such a vast network? The answer lies in the firm's operating model, which is designed to maintain a strong global brand while also empowering local offices to adapt to regional needs and regulations. KPMG International provides global guidance and oversight to local member firms, which operate as independent entities. Each member firm is responsible for its own operations and compliance, but also benefits from the global resources, knowledge, and expertise of the KPMG network.

How KPMG is Different From Other Accounting Firms

KPMG distinguishes itself from other accounting firms through a combination of factors, including its global presence, commitment to innovation, and comprehensive range of services. Firstly, KPMG operates in over 150 countries, allowing it to provide seamless cross-border services and tap into diverse market knowledge. This global reach enables the firm to support multinational clients with complex needs effectively.

Secondly, KPMG places a strong emphasis on innovation, leveraging cutting-edge technologies such as artificial intelligence and data analytics to enhance its auditing and advisory processes. For instance, KPMG has developed advanced data analysis tools like KPMG Clara, an AI-powered platform that revolutionizes the audit process by analyzing large volumes of data more efficiently.

Lastly, KPMG offers an extensive array of services beyond traditional auditing, such as cybersecurity consulting, risk management, and sustainability advisory. This diversified service portfolio allows KPMG to provide holistic solutions that address the evolving needs and challenges of its clients in an ever-changing business landscape

Free trial!

Access a library of videos, templates, and examples curated by Leland's top coaches.

undefined's profileundefined's profileundefined's profile

From 91 top coaches

Example Resumes

Example Resumes Image

Example Cases

Example Cases Image

Casing Drills

Casing Drills Image

Mock Interviews

Mock Interviews Image

The Impact of Technology on KPMG's Operations

The accounting industry, like many others, is undergoing major changes as a result of advances in technology. At KPMG, technology is seen as a key driver of innovation, efficiency, and value creation for clients.

KPMG has made significant investments in digital technologies over the past few years, including the development of its KPMG Clara platform (as mentioned), which uses artificial intelligence and automation to streamline audit processes and improve accuracy. The firm has also launched various other digital solutions to enhance its tax and advisory services, including KPMG Ignition Tax, KPMG Global Legal Operations Transformation Service (GLOTS), and even more tools that allow it to provide top quality service to its clients.

But technology is not just a means to improve internal processes and client service. It is also a source of disruption and opportunity for KPMG's clients, many of whom are grappling with the challenges of digital transformation in their own industries. KPMG's advisors and consultants are well-equipped to help clients navigate technology trends and adopt innovative solutions that drive growth and competitiveness.

Career Opportunities and Advancement at KPMG

If you're considering a career in accounting or professional services, KPMG offers a wide range of opportunities to suit your interests and goals. The firm has a robust recruitment and development program, which aims to attract and retain top talent from diverse backgrounds.

At KPMG, you can pursue a career in audit, tax, advisory, or a combination of these areas. The firm offers entry-level positions for recent graduates, as well as opportunities for experienced professionals to join at higher levels. KPMG also provides numerous paths for career advancement, including leadership development programs, mentorship, and training opportunities.

Sustainability is also a key focus for KPMG's talent strategy, and the firm is committed to promoting diversity, inclusion, and employee well-being.

To learn how to land a position at KPMG, check out these expert resources:

Browse hundreds of expert coaches

Leland coaches have helped thousands of people achieve their goals. A dedicated mentor can make all the difference.

Browse Related Articles