The Rise of Regional UK TP Teams
04 April 2016
Whilst a London transfer pricing career can offer invaluable experience for ambitious transfer pricing professionals, the market is hotting up and competition is fierce. Whilst there is still on-going demand in the London teams, client expectations are high and with specialist expertise being particularly sought – not every TP professional wants to lose their generalist skills. Sure, if you have been involved in traditional financial services TP projects or value chain then London is an excellent destination, however these roles will not necessarily suit or have appeal to a strong generalist transfer pricing professional who wants to maintain this focus. Similarly, with London teams approaching 100 people in transfer pricing alone, some individuals have a strong preference for joining a start-up, small or medium sized practice where they can play a more involved role with clients and team growth/development.
Big 4 Transfer Pricing opportunities now exist in the UK Reading, Birmingham and Manchester teams for strong transfer pricing talent at both Manager and Senior Manager levels.
For international professionals who are unfamiliar with the UK outside of London, there are number of centres of excellence for transfer pricing expertise.
As an important commercial centre for Southern England and the Thames Valley, Reading is within 30 minutes commute from London and services some of the world’s largest multinationals. Hosting the headquarters of several British and foreign businesses, key names include BG Group, ING Direct, Microsoft, Oracle, PepsiCo and Wrigley, to name but a few.
With a strong historical involvement in the technology sector, high profile companies such as Cisco, Ericsson, Agilent, SGI, Symantec and Verizon all have a significant presence in Reading.
As such, exciting opportunities currently exist in Reading for either experienced Transfer Pricing Managers or Transfer Pricing Senior Managers. Professionals with working knowledge of U.S or Japanese multinationals will always be of high interest, however this is not a prerequisite for consideration.
Transfer Pricing teams in Reading are typically smaller than London but don’t be fooled, they work seamlessly with the UK’s capital. Transfer Pricing professionals can expect high-quality projects from an increasingly demanding client base. Apart from mainstream transfer pricing advisory and planning, you will have a significant level of exposure to value chain transformation and supply chain restructuring projects, with the opportunity to also draw on your tax or finance skills if you have multiple areas of expertise. Client exposure will also be significant at Manager level, with much more responsibility being placed on your shoulders to lead engagements and be on the frontline for client queries.
Birmingham is the UK’s largest city outside of London and has a lot to boast about. With almost 1.2 million residents and a thriving economy and GDP worth £121BN, transfer pricing careers can be seriously accelerated through working in a regional Big 4 team. From a client perspective, Birmingham houses a number of FTSE 100 organisations including IMI and Severn Trent Water, with Jaguar, EON, Carillion and Cadbury (now owned by Mondalez International) also possessing significant operations in or around Birmingham. With continued investment and regeneration of the city and fast train links to the capital (you can get to London within 80 minutes), Birmingham is an exciting place to be from a transfer pricing perspective. Airport links to Europe are also exceptional, with over 50 airlines operating from Birmingham and servicing all the key European hubs in addition to North America and 110 other destinations worldwide.
Specialist Big 4 transfer pricing teams vary in size between 8-15 professionals, which has huge appeal to Managers and Senior Managers seeking significant client involvement. Teams are experiencing high growth due to BEPS and rising client demands and by joining a Big 4 Birmingham team, this can greatly accelerate your career development compared to a much larger transfer pricing practice. Partner contact and Partner mentoring is extremely transparent and visible and professionals who possess an interest in tax, finance or economics in addition to transfer pricing can utilise both/all as opposed to being too specialised.
Manchester and the North West is approximately 180 miles north of London and is known for its cool vibe and cutting edge music scene as well three of the world’s largest football clubs – Manchester United, Manchester City and Liverpool FC. Manchester and the North West region is home to a number of high profile multinationals and SME’s that include Essar Oil, Certas Energy, AMEC, Guardian Assurance, Kerling, United Utilities, Bentley and Matalan to name but a few. The city centre has gone through major regeneration over the last 20 years and has an urban feel due to the many warehouse and loft conversions that have been developed into stunning apartments. With excellent train links to the capital in addition to a large airport that services all of the key cities in Europe, North America and Asia – Manchester has a lot to offer from a lifestyle perspective.
Transfer Pricing teams are varied and multi-skilled and will suit professionals who enjoy a broad and generalist role as opposed to working in a narrow specialism. With the rise of value chain and restructuring projects in the region, the opportunity to technically develop your expertise beyond mainstream transfer pricing issues is definitely there for ambitious candidates who want exposure to operational transfer pricing and implementation projects.
For additional information on how considering a regional TP opportunity could enhance your career, please contact Liz Tookey at: