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KPMG invests $2 billion in AI, strikes partnership with Microsoft

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Professional services firm KPMG has announced a global collaboration with Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) to use its artificial intelligence (AI) tools to improve its internal processes.

The partnership between both entities will see KPMG invest up to $2 billion in Microsoft AI research within a five-year span, according to a report. The $2 billion investment is expected to generate up to $12 billion in growth opportunity for KPMG as the firm banks on the soaring adoption of AI to continue until the end of the decade.

By actively integrating Microsoft’s AI tool, KPMG says its 265,000-strong global workforce will be equipped to expedite analysis and explore their creativity.

“The Microsoft Cloud and Azure OpenAI Service capabilities will empower our teams to help our clients, including more than 2,500 joint clients, keep pace with the rapidly evolving AI landscape and solve their greatest challenges while ensuring they are well positioned for success in the future world of work,” KPMG’s lead partner for Microsoft Cherie Gartner said.

Aside from merely leveraging Microsoft’s AI tools, Gartner disclosed that KPMG will integrate AI functionalities into KPMG Clara, its smart audit platform. There are also plans to integrate Microsoft Fabric into KPMG Clara designed to allow teams to improve audit efficiency by enabling real-time access to data.

“By further integrating data, automation, and AI enablement, our professionals can continue enhancing audit execution and deliver quality audits aligned to the standards while boosting the profession’s attractiveness,” Thomas Mackenzie, CTO of global audit at KPMG, stated.

Gartner disclosed that the new partnership will yield a range of positives in analyzing ESG data for KPMG’s clients. Through AI, KPMG will be able to identify patterns in ESG data and leverage generative AI to tell compelling narratives for the tax stories of clients.

Aware of the threats posed by the use of generative AI by employees, KPMG announced that it had implemented several guardrails to ensure safe usage by its staff. Early in the year, Samsung (NASDAQ: SSNLFbanned its employees from using ChatGPT on work devices following a data leak after one engineer inputted a source code into the platform.

KPMG—No stranger to innovative technology

KPMG has an identifiable streak of leveraging innovative technology in an attempt to improve its service for customers. The firm waded into the metaverse in 2022 with a $30 million investment as it explores potential use cases for Web3 in several sectors.

At the time, the company signaled an intention to hire more employees to flesh out its Web3 plans while announcing training on blockchain technology for its existing staff.

Other Big Four accounting firms are following KPMG’s path toward integrating blockchain and AI in their operations, with Deloitte improving Know Your Customer (KYC) processes with distributed ledgers.

Watch: Konstantinos Sgantzos talks AI and BSV blockchain with CoinGeek

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