Very interesting move by PwC to sell its government consulting arm, which largely eliminates independence constraints and opens up more opportunities to audit government agencies (according to this article in Consultancy.uk, a growing business in the US). The firm's consulting business provides consulting (nonaudit) services to many US government agencies including the Department of Defense (DoD), Homeland Security and Veteran Affairs, and local governments. Presumably, some (or perhaps many) of those services are impermissible under the government auditing standards.
The article also states:
"Now, PwC has confirmed the sale of its public sector consulting business to private-equity fund Veritas Capital, for an undisclosed fee. Following the deal the consultancy business will maintain its current leadership – Scott McIntyre, president and CEO of PwC’s Public Sector will lead it – and operate as a stand-alone company....The move will allow PwC to invest in other areas...provides PwC with a major opportunity to add to its auditing portfolio right off the bat. During the period of negotiations, the Pentagon announced that it would run the first ever agency wide audit of the DoD and its £1.7 trillion ($2.4 trillion) in assets."
Add that to the firm's announcement last week of a new Blockchain-based auditing service and who knows - maybe audit will start making a come-back!!