Smith & Williamson and Solomon Hare join forces

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Mid-tier accountancy firms Smith & Williamson and Solomon Hare have merged to launch themselves into the profession's top 10.

The enlarged group will be known as Smith & Williamson, but Solomon Hare will retain its name to maximise the recognition it enjoys as a leading firm in Bristol and the South West. Their combined turnover is claimed to be in excess of 120m.

The firms have built up close working relationships as part of the Nexia International group. In addition to their cultural compatibility, Smith & Williamson chairman Gareth Pearce set out a number of other advantages of the merger: "Smith & Williamson has a leading edge investment fund management business, together with a banking licence and an extensive pensions and financial advisory service. All of this is available immediately...

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By Anonymous
04th Jun 2005 20:19

small practitioner beware!

This merger only goes to show that "size" is still important after all.

I was shocked to read in the financial press a few weeks ago that the troubled consolidator Numerica is no more, after being devoured by "two mad dogs" BDO Stoy Hayward and Vantis. With the merger of Smith & Williamson with Solomon Hare this week, it appears that the "big boys" of the accountancy world are getting even bigger.

Where does this merger leave small accountancy practices? Should they be merging too in order to take on the likes of Smith & Williamson or should they be considering ofshoring? Personally, I think their days are numbered! They need to go back to the drawing board and carefully assess and formulate their survival strategies for the next five to ten years. If they are complacent, they are likely to disappear from the face of the earth just like the local butcher and the corner shop. They are bound to be replaced by the Tesco's and the Sainsbury's of the accounting world!

Nowadays every business owner or manager should think "Global" in order to survive. The future looks really bleak for the small practitioner!

May the last sole practitioner to abandon his/her practice to join the "big boys" remember to empty the fridge and switch the lights off! If you can't beat them, join them!

If any of the "big boys" are interested, my CV is attached below.


Note: Freddy is a simple Chartered Accountant (member of ICAEW) practising in West London. He trained as an accountant with Ernst & Young in London and has also worked for Smith & Williamson. The views expressed here are his own and are not intended to cause offence to anyone. Any offence caused is deeply regretted.

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06th Jun 2005 08:54

I think your CV can explain your attitude! You seem to have only worked in large firms. Having worked in firms of all sizes I can assure you than quality service is what the small practice can offer - this is how we will survive the competition posed by the larger firms.

Our clients appreciate that they are more than a client code to us and they realise that they get a lot better service for less money with us.

Having worked in a big 5 firm I can honestly say that in my experience smaller firms give much more thought to individual clients needs.

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