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Big four accounting firm EY is giving thousands of UK-based employees a share of £ 20million bonus pot after seeing sharper-than-expected revenue rebound from COVID crisis 19.

Sky News has learned that EY is due to make an average one-time payment of £ 1,100 to 17,500 employees – making it the second dominant quartet in the profession to announce such a move, following a similar move by Deloitte in March .

Staff were notified of the payment in a video message from Hywel Ball, EY UK president and regional managing partner for UK and Ireland on Thursday afternoon.

UK partners of EY will be excluded from the special bonus pot, according to an insider.

In his communication with staff, Mr Ball said the company wanted to reward them for their work during the pandemic.

Insiders said EY has made substantial savings in areas such as its travel budget COVID-19[female[feminine locks.

Nonetheless, the bonus pot represents a substantial turnaround in the company’s outlook since the middle of last year, when it postponed partner promotions amid uncertainty over the financial impact of the pandemic.

Other big four companies, including KPMG and PricewaterhouseCoopers, have also made seemingly drastic decisions to delay promotions and bonuses in the early stages of the coronavirus outbreak.

In a statement issued in response to a Sky News investigation, Mr. Ball said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has had a huge impact on people, communities and businesses in the UK, changing the way we work and live, and taking an emotional toll on individuals and families.

“It is in this context that I am very proud of our employees across the UK. They have worked incredibly hard to support our clients and stakeholders in very difficult circumstances.

“The payment we announced today is a way for EY partners to express our gratitude for their resilience and exceptional commitment.”

A source said the one-time bonus was awarded in addition to EY’s annual salary and bonus reviews, which take place in October.

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