New York-headquartered professional services firm PwC LLP is the
U.S. member firm of PricewaterhouseCoopers International Limited,
whose network of firms operate in 157 countries, employ more than
223,000 people, and serve more than 90 percent of the FT Global 500
(a snapshot of the world's 500 largest firms).
In the U.S., PwC focuses on audit and assurance, tax, and
consulting services. Additionally, in the U.S., PwC concentrates on
16 key industries, and provides targeted services that include-but
are not limited to-human resources, deals, forensics, and
consulting services. By revenue, it's the second-largest accounting
firm in the country.
Although the firm's reach is vast these days, in the beginning
it was just Samuel Lowell Price, a London accountant who hung out
his shingle in 1849. He was subsequently joined by two more
accountants, and in 1865, the partnership renamed itself Price,
Waterhouse and Company, which grew to become a prominent
international network of independent member firms. The "Cooper"
comes from William Cooper, another London accountant who started a
firm with his brothers in 1854. A century later, the aptly named
Cooper Brothers merged with two North American firms (Lybrand, Ross
Brothers & Montgomery in the U.S. and McDonald, Currie &
Company in Canada). The combined firm was named Coopers &
Lybrand, and in 1998, it merged with Price Waterhouse. The tie-up
was a blockbuster: both C&L and Price Waterhouse were ranked
among the top-six accounting firms in the world.