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from practice I had a staff of 750. So the ex-
pansion was quite rapid and quite gratify-
ing," recalls Yung, who became chairman of
Coopers & Lybrand Hong Kong in 1965.
Of course, the rapid growth of the firm
meant Yung had to deal with many challenges.
He recalls one in particular involving the
1959 purchase of Mercantile Bank by the
Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corpo-
ration. In 1965, Mercantile moved its head
office from the U.K. to Hong Kong and was
jointly audited by Peat Marwick Mitchell
(now known as KPMG) and Coopers & Ly-
brand. An invitation to meet with a man
named Freddie Knightly from Mercantile
Bank in Hong Kong led to Yung sitting in an
Knightly reminded Yung that Mercan-
tile was now a subsidiary of Hongkong and
Shanghai Banking Corporation, alluding to
the parent bank's policy of allowing only ex-
patriates into the secrets of its financial re-
cords. "I said, 'I'm the only partner and you
allow my staff below me, an Englishman, to
look at the minute books and not me? I don't
want the job.' So I thanked him and left."
Half an hour after Yung got back to his
office, he received a call from Knightly.
"Knightly said: 'You win. You can certainly
look at our private books.'
"I accepted it on those terms and became
the first Chinese in the then 75-year histo-
ry of Mercantile Bank to sign their secrecy
book -- a book directors and auditors must
sign vouching that you would not divulge
anything you see," says Yung. "I stood up for
the Chinese in my profession of which I am
extremely proud. I made it a point to raise
the standard of my profession."
Although the Sanford Yung Scholars Pro-
gramme is now fully sponsored by PwC, his
interest in the charity's work remains strong.
"The main purpose of the scholarship is to
recognize and encourage good students [in
accounting]," Yung explains. "We send stu-
dents from Hong Kong to do internships in
PwC London. And those from Shanghai and
Beijing we second to New York for intern-
ship. This is very meaningful."
Yung is also chief donor to the Sir Ed-
ward Youde Memorial Fund, which was
established in 1987 in memory of the gover-
nor of Hong Kong between 1982 and 1986,
who died suddenly on a visit to Beijing.
"Two days after his death I sent HK$1 mil-
lion to start the memorial fund and now ev-
ery year I contribute money," he says.
The fund, which bestows fellowships,
scholarships and education awards to out-
standing students in Hong Kong, has contrib-
uted about HK$21 million to nearly 600,000
students over 25 years, says Yung. "The par-
ents of those young awardees are so grateful
they come with their son or daughter with
tears in their eyes to collect the prize."
Getting China on track
Nellie Fong remembers her education in ac-
counting being somewhat different to the
programmes students experience today.
As part of her training, the now retired Insti-
tute member and former chairman of PwC's
China operations, did two things: adding all
the numbers in a telephone directory and
going to the supermarket to calculate total
costs at the till using mental arithmetic.
"At that time in England, 12 pence
equalled one shilling and 20 shillings
equalled one pound... I would stand by the
screen and add in my head and at the end I
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