– Ex-PwC Boss Luke Sayers Doubles Federal Contract after Wife’s Political Scandal –





The private company of former PwC CEO Luke Sayers was given more than $1.5 million from the Federal Government days after his wife was exposed appearing in illegal advertisements spruiking former Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg.

Investigations show the Sayers Group, which Sayers founded in mid-2020 when he left PwC, had a Federal contract increased from $658,680 to $2,166,780 — a lift of 230 per cent.

That was on May 2 last year — days after it emerged his wife Cate Sayers, the founder of charity Inclusion Foundation, and Karen Hayes, the then CEO of Guide Dogs Victoria, had appeared in advertisements spruiking Frydenberg for re-election.

It is illegal for charities to endorse politicians or political parties.

Frydenberg was forced to pull the advertisements, which appeared on his website, on social media, and on flyers distributed in his then electorate of Kooyong in Melbourne.

It was one of the biggest stories in the lead up to last year’s federal election, held on May 21, which saw the Coalition ousted and Frydenberg lose his seat.

Luke Sayers was the CEO of PwC Australia from 2012 to 2020, and so throughout the entire PwC tax leaks affair.

Like PwC, Sayers Group is a “consultancy”, which makes millions of dollars from government contracts, often for services previously provided by public servants.

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Sayers Group gets an extra $1.51m on May 2 last year. Source: AusTender


Investigations show Sayers Group was given a $658,680 contract in December 2021 by the National Indigenous Australians Agency (NIAA) for “strategic advice and review services”.

On May 2 last year, that contract was “amended”, yet while the description remained the same, the value was increased by $1,508,100 — or 2.3 times.

The Frydenberg ads scandal broke on April 20 last year, and thrust Cate Sayers into the national spotlight.

The vast increase in the Sayers Group contract was published on Federal Government tender site AusTender on 17 May last year, four days before Australia went to the polls.




Dec 6 — Sayers Group given $658,680 contract


Apr 20 —Frydenberg’s illegal advertisements exposed

May 2 — Sayers Group contract increased to $2,166,780

May 21 — Frydenberg and Coalition ousted at federal election


Cate Sayers appeared in the advertisements as “Founder, Inclusion Foundation” under the heading “Why I am voting for Josh Frydenberg”.

“Josh is the epitome of community and has a massive track record of supporting our local schools (and) our local charities,” she says in the advertisements.

“Josh walks the talk, but more importantly he has a huge heart, listens and he cares”.

Cate Sayers appears in the Frydenberg ads as “Founder, Inclusion Foundation”. Source: Josh Frydenberg


The payments to Sayers Group, totalling $2.17m, closely involved the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet (PM&C).

The National Indigenous Affairs Agency was formed out of PM&C in mid-2019, days after the Morrison Government won that year’s federal election.

As previously revealed, the NIAA has been by far the biggest provider of federal contracts to the “Indigenous” arm of PwC.

It has given PwC’s Indigenous Consulting, which was created under Sayers in 2013, more than $16m over the past four years.

PwC Australia has been caught selling, for millions of dollars, secret Australian government tax policy data to multinationals seeking to avoid Australian tax.

PwC Australia gleaned that information while providing “advice” to government on new laws to prevent multinationals avoiding Australian tax.

The $2.17m provided to the Sayers Group involved providing the Department of Prime Minister & Cabinet with “governance support”, a spokesperson said.

“The Sayers Group was paid to provide ‘governance support’ to PM&C”

Luke Sayers and Cate Sayers did not respond to a request for comment and have repeatedly refused to comment when approached by The Klaxon over the past 16 months.

Frydenberg has also repeatedly refused to comment when approached by The Klaxon.

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Frydenberg (left), Cate Sayers and Luke Sayers. Source: Facebook


The PwC scandal has cast the spotlight on long-standing failings with AusTender, including that only extremely limited information is disclosed as to why contracts are awarded.

Another concern is that if a contract is “amended” — which means a new contact is entered into — key data is removed from the original filing, including the length of the original contract.

NIAA spokesperson Jamie Fox told The Klaxon the original Sayers Group contract had been for “eight months”.

It started on December 6, 2021, which means it ended in early August 2022.

The May 2 ‘amendment’ came less than three months in to the contract, and five months before it was due to be completed.

Along with increasing the price tag by 2.3 times, the amendment extended the end date to February 28 this year, just short of seven months more.

Analysis shows even factoring in that extended timeframe, the payments to Sayers Group exploded after May 2 last year.

That is, while the total payments soared, so did the rate being paid.

Breaking down the project on a monthly basis, Sayers Group was paid $82,335 a month before the May 2 amendment. (The $658,680 contract over eight months).

After the amendment, it was paid $194,523 a month — 236 per cent a month more. ($1,933,705 between May 2022 and February this year).


More Klaxon PwC Tax Scandal Exclusives:


7 SepMeet the owners of PwC’s Indigenous Consulting

30 Aug – PwC’s multi-million dollar “Voice to Parliament”

18 Aug – PwC probe boss failed to declare ties to firm

10 AugEx-PwC CEO in $2m taxpayer bonanza

6 AugTax agency’s board meetings held inside PwC

1 Aug  Tax Ombudsman responsible for “missing” report

25 July PwC’s Peter Collins on Tax Board “Advisory Panel”

23 JulyTax Board run by PwC Partner

18 July Gov’t “Advisory Panel” of PwC tax partners axed

17 JulyFirst public official ousted in global PwC tax scandal

13 JulyGov’t tax boss at heart of PwC tax scammers nest

27 JunePwC tax scam CEO quits as charity chair

26 June Tax Ombudsman schooled by PwC emails partner

7 June“Vanished” Tax boss was exec at pre-PwC

24 MayYou don’t Sayers? PwC Mini-Me in $6m Gov’t bonanza


NIAA spokesperson Jamie Fox told The Klaxon the Sayers Group had been given the $658,680 contract to “provide specialist advice and governance support”.

PM&C and the NIAA had a “shared services arrangement”, where they shared “human resources”, IT and “other corporate services”, Fox said in a written statement.

The Sayers Group had been contracted to “review” that “arrangement”.

“Sayers Group were engaged to provide specialist advice and governance support to review this arrangement as part of NIAA establishing its own in-house services,” Fox said.

No reason was given why it was considered necessary for taxpayers to be billed over $650,000 — over a period of eight months — to help the nation’s most powerful department (PM&C) work out how to share some of its human resources and IT services.

Also unexplained is why PM&C needed that support beginning 18 months after it had created the NIAA, and for a period of more than a year.

“The Sayers Group were engaged to manage this project within an eight month timeframe and during that time, it became apparent the scope and timeframe would need to be adjusted, and therefore the contract was varied,” Fox said.

The NIAA’s reasons for having provided the $658,680 contract are vague and heavily laden with management speak — so too are its stated reasons for increasing it by 230 per cent.

NIAA responses to The Klaxon over $1.5m Sayers “amendment”.


The Sayers Group’s contract (to “review” the “shared services arrangement” between PM&C and the NIAA) included to “negotiate a revised shared services arrangement between the NIAA and PM&C” and “develop a new Memorandum of Understanding that reflected this new arrangement”, Fox said.

It was to “develop an implementation plan to enact the new MoU mapping out which functions would be transitioned from PM&C to the NIAA”; and “develop a high level long term corporate strategy for the NIAA” that “considers options” for the “future delivery of all corporate services”.

Fox said the “variation in the contract”, on May 2, 2022, was for “additional services for the NIAA”.

They were to “project manage the transition of functions from PM&C to the NIAA”; to “develop a Channel Management Strategy”; to “support the creation of a Corporate Front Door help desk model”; and “provide Business Analysis functions, including current/future state mapping for those process in scope for process redesign”.

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Sayers Group has been given millions in Federal contracts since 2020. Source: The Klaxon


Karen Hayes, who had been Guide Dogs Victoria CEO for more than a decade, resigned over the Frydenberg scandal, six weeks after it broke.

Cate Sayers faced no consequences.

As previously revealed, following the scandal, the then chair of Inclusion Foundation wrote to members saying Cate had engaged in no wrongdoing, though he provided no evidence to back the claim.

That chair was Luke Sayers.

The Klaxon’s expose last month. Source: The Klaxon


In May The Klaxon revealed the Sayers Group had been given $6.2m in Federal contracts over the preceding 24 months.

With the Federal Government facing extreme pressure over the PwC scandal, the Department of Finance on May 19 announced a “clampdown”, widely reported as an “effective ban” on PwC.

As previously revealed, between then and last month, the Sayers Group was awarded Federal contracts at more than three times the previous rate — receiving new contracts worth $1.955m.

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Anthony Klan

Editor, The Klaxon

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