Well, here’s something exciting!

  • The Trustees of the IFRS Foundation, responsible for the governance and oversight of the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB), today announced the appointment of Prof Dr Andreas Barckow to serve as Chair of the IASB, effective July 2021. He will succeed Hans Hoogervorst, who completes his second five-year term in June 2021.

Dr Barckow said:

  • I am deeply honoured to be appointed as the next IASB Chair, to lead the standard-setter into its third decade. I look forward to working with my colleagues on the Board and the staff to meet the exciting challenges ahead.

The news release says the appointment “follows an extensive international search process, supported by a global executive search firm. The Trustees sought nominations from around 500 stakeholder organizations and considered more than 200 candidates from 29 countries before compiling a reduced list of 63 possible candidates from 21 countries.” Impressive indeed! But courtesy of my mole at the IASB, I recently obtained access to a transcript of some exchanges between Dr Barckow and incumbent Chair Hoogervorst, which suggest some more basic machinations at work, and as an important public service, I present some of that correspondence here. Because of the incendiary nature of the material, I’ve chosen to redact certain portions.

Andreas Barckow: Hans, did you hear? We did it! I’m in!

Hans Hoogervorst: It was all you, Barcky my boy! I’m glad I helped a little, but the credit is all yours.

AB: It was a close call for a while. It really looked like that tosspot (redacted) was going to get it.

HH: I know, I thought so too. The accounting world will never know how close it came to puking up its collective guts.

AB: But Hans, I do feel guilty about how we took him down. I’m not sure we really did the right thing.

HH: Look Barcky, the camera doesn’t lie. The pictures show what they show.

AB: Well, they don’t show the entrapment that led up to them.

HH: What entrapment? A door was opened and that knobhead (redacted) went through it.

AB: Yes, but the door was only opened because we put it there.

HH: Don’t talk like that Barcky. If anyone asks, we’ve never seen a door in our whole lives.

AB: I don’t yet have your degree of confidence in such matters.

HH: Well, of course not, I’ve had ten years of experience dealing with these pissbrains. I feel bad for you Barcky, if you want to know the truth. You won’t get away with phoning it in like I have. Everyone’s going to be watching the new kid. It’s easier now we’re all “working remotely” of course. Still, you’ll probably have to put in a solid three or four hours a day for the first year at least.

AB: It’s going to be a backbreaker – I don’t know if I can take it. That’s why, if it didn’t go to (redacted), it might have been better to choose (redacted) instead.

HH: Well, at least (redacted) does have some good points. Did I ever tell you about the time he and I went to (redacted). He suggested we (redacted) and then he suggested we (redacted). We ended up (redacted) and then he (redacted) and we went to (redacted) and I barely got out alive! He does know how to have a good time. But that’s why this job isn’t for him.

AB: I agree. But did you really believe those medical records? He claims they’re faked.

HH: Well, he would, wouldn’t he.

AB: Are you sure you didn’t have any hand in that? If everything in those records were true, he’d be barely alive.

HH: And so he’d fit right in on the IASB, it’s true. But forget about him, he’s out and you’re in.

AB: But talking of the IASB, some of those people worry me. I don’t know if I can handle them.

HH: Don’t make me laugh Barcky my boy! Who are you talking about, that crackhead (redacted)? Or that old fossil (redacted)? Half of them don’t know an accounting standard from (redacted).

AB: Oh come on Hans, I’m sure that’s over the top.

HH: You just need to throw them a few crumbs from time to time. Why do you think IFRS 16 has that stupid piece about (redacted)? It was just something we had to throw (redacted)’s way to keep her quiet. Similar thing with the (redacted) in IFRS 15. If that wasn’t in there, (redacted) would be crying like a baby to this day.

AB: You really are the man, Hans. I don’t know if I’ll ever be the giant that you are.

HH: Don’t be so negative Barcky! You’re no more of a dweeb than I was when I started.

AB: At least I know you’ll be there for advice when I need you.

HH: Think again, Barcky my boy! I have big plans for July 2021. I’m going (redacted) with (redacted). The shitshow is all yours!

(And this is me) With hindsight, maybe I should have redacted even more than I did. Oh well, it’s too late now. Happy holidays!

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