The bigger the business or industry, the more financial services and specialization it requires. As the crypto industry grows up and more firms establish themselves, important services such as auditing and tax consultancy become increasingly necessary. Traditional auditing and consulting firms are answering the call by hiring crypto specialists in droves.
According to an article in the Financial Times, some of the biggest auditing firms in the world like EY and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) have taken on hundreds of new clients involved in cryptocurrencies in the recent past, and as a result PwC, in particular, has brought on as many as 400 blockchain experts in an effort to successfully serve these clients and their unique needs. Ralph Weinberger, who leads their global network assurance methodology group, told FT:
“We are devoting significant resources to how we might provide audit services in not just cryptocurrency, but blockchain.”
The regulatory atmosphere surrounding cryptocurrencies and blockchain assets has hardly even begun to shape. In many regions around the world, there is no regulation at all, meaning that companies doing business there are often operating under a shroud of uncertainty. In countries like the US, regulations can be confusing and have yet to fully realize themselves, so much so that the IRS was recently told to be much clearer in how it handles cryptocurrencies.
The job of companies like PwC is to help companies be in compliance and properly meet their tax obligations. Crypto exchanges and mining outfits are not the only companies which can benefit from the blockchain experts at auditing firms – virtually any company that exposes itself to crypto at all will need some form of guidance as regards the tax situation. Even simply accepting bitcoin as a payment form can be confusing for traditional companies used to transacting strictly in fiat currencies.
PwC appears to desperately want to lead the way, likely recognizing the potential size of the blockchain industry moving forward. They have an entire subsection of their site devoted to it, in which they explain that they’re ready to help.
“PwC sees enormous potential for blockchain in financial services. We’ve developed the strategic and implementation capabilities necessary to help financial institutions, technology companies and startups take advantage of this transformative technology. Our global team of experienced business, technology and regulatory leaders can help you identify how blockchain can benefit your organization and how to rapidly move these initiatives forward.”
There are few, if any, large native crypto tax or auditing consulting firms. One that comes to mind is Libra, who recently completed funding, but the question remains as to whether they will be able to serve crypto clients in quite the same, complete manner of PricewaterhouseCoopers and other traditional firms who are modernizing with an eye toward cryptos.
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