KPMG, Microsoft enter AI alliance

Christopher Tredger
By Christopher Tredger, Portals editor
Johannesburg, 13 Jul 2023
Satya Nadella, chairman and CEO of Microsoft.
Satya Nadella, chairman and CEO of Microsoft.

KPMG and Microsoft have entered into a multi-year cloud and artificial intelligence (AI) alliance to strengthen service delivery across audit, tax and advisory services.

By infusing data analytics, AI and Azure Cognitive Services into the audit process, through the KPMG smart audit platform KPMG Clara, 85 000 audit professionals who collectively work on hundreds of thousands of audits a year will be empowered to focus more closely on higher-risk areas of the audit, sector-specific risks and challenges.

Integrating Azure OpenAI Service and Microsoft Fabric into KPMG Digital Gateway, a KPMG single platform solution, will give clients access to the full suite of KPMG tax and legal technologies, and allow them to gain more integrated and transparent access to their data and take a more holistic management approach to their tax functions.

Developing an AI-enabled application development and knowledge platform on Microsoft Azure will expedite the creation of specialized solutions for clients, helping to enhance their competitive advantage and profitability while putting ethics and security at the very core of the offerings.

According to a statement released by the companies, the collaboration includes a KPMG multibillion-dollar commitment in Microsoft cloud and AI services over the next five years that will help to unlock potential incremental growth for KPMG of over $12 billion.

The companies added that the expanded alliance “will enhance KPMG client engagements and supercharge the employee experience in a way that is responsible, trustworthy and safe.”

The Microsoft cloud and Azure OpenAI service capabilities will empower the KPMG global workforce of 265,000 “to unleash their creativity, provide faster analysis and spend more time on strategic advice".

“This will enable them to help clients, including more than 2,500 KPMG and Microsoft joint clients, keep pace with the rapidly evolving AI landscape and solve their greatest business challenges while positioning them for success in the future world of work,” reads part of the statement.

As an early access partner for Microsoft 365 Copilot and Azure OpenAI Service, KPMG professionals will pilot the technologies with select business groups across the global organisation.

Bill Thomas, global chairman and CEO, KPMG International, said: “Our renewed and strengthened relationship with Microsoft will help harness the power of our multi-disciplinary model by ensuring that our people always have the right expertise, skills, and tools to overcome challenges and provide the very best advice to clients. It will also help make KPMG a more agile and resilient business that continues to be an interesting and exciting place to work.”

Satya Nadella, chairman and CEO, Microsoft, said: "We have a real opportunity to apply this next generation of AI to help transform every industry, including professional services. Our expanded partnership with KPMG will bring together AI innovation across the Microsoft Cloud with KPMG's tax, audit and advisory expertise to empower its employees and unlock insights for its customers."