Posted on March 13, 2017 by staff

PwC plans to accelerate growth through CodeBase alliance


Professional services firm PricewaterhouseCoopers has announced plans to work with Edinburgh-based incubator CodeBase.

After quadrupling in size since its March 2014 launch, CodeBase is now Europe‘s largest incubator and home to more than 80 start-ups employing more than 600 people in all.

It has helped to incubate scale-up companies which have raised over half a billion dollars of investment since its launch. A Stirling incubator was announced earlier this month.

The alignment will see PwC offer business support such as cloud-based accounting software, state of the art management information reporting, payroll and traditional accounting and tax services, reinforcing PwC’s commitment to start-up and scale-up technology companies in Scotland.

At PwC, the deal was pulled together by the My Financepartner team and head of innovation for Scotland, Douglas Shand.

“I’ve been involved with a lot of start-ups and scale-ups and very often they are companies which initially struggle to justify the cost and complexity of a traditional back office function,” he said.

“Reflecting that, My Financepartner lets them pick and choose the services they may want to use and pay for them as needed on a subscription payment model.”

Kevin Ellis, PwC chairman and senior partner, said: “Embracing technological change and cultivating a world leading digital sector is critical to job creation and the ongoing strength of business in the UK, including professional services.

“The venture between PwC and CodeBase is part of our commitment to encourage innovation and support businesses to grow.

“The exchange of skills and ideas in hubs across the country should help rebalance growth across the country.”

As part of the agreement, PwC will take up a presence at CodeBase, with the team led by newly-appointed My Financepartner leader for Scotland Ian Marshall.

PwC regional chair Lindsay Gardiner said: “Professional services is changing and PwC in Scotland has attempted to be at the forefront of that change where it makes sense for our clients and the Scottish economy.

“This deal and the development of My Financepartner also reflect these exciting, changing times. Start-ups and scale-ups don’t want or need a traditional financial advice service so we’ve adapted to that.

“My Financepartner lets the companies take care of the majority of their own accounting and business requirements but with the back-up and pro-active support of our experts if and when they need to talk to them.

“Many say it’s about wanting to be – or looking for – the next Skyscanner, but to me that misses the point. Yes, it’s fantastic that Scotland can produce unicorns and we hope there are many more of them.

“Private businesses are the lifeblood of Scotland and the advice companies get at CodeBase is set to help them be amongst the next generation of fast growth and big success firms. Being able to help all of these companies to that level will be a fantastic achievement.”

Stephen Coleman, CEO and co-founder of CodeBase, said: “The partnership with PwC allows us to both accelerate development at Argyle House on our journey to build a tech powerhouse in Edinburgh and for our companies to tap into the firm’s global expertise and networks.”