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Practice news: Deloitte expansion to create 100 Cardiff jobs

21st Oct 2013
Editorial team AccountingWEB.co.uk
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A round-up of significant executive moves, announcements and other developments from the world of practice during October 2013.

Deloitte expansion to create 100 Cardiff jobs 

21 October - The Big Four firm's plans for expansion will create the new positions over three years. 

Deloitte will set up the Welsh government-backed Cardiff Centre of Excellence, which will support its International Assignment Services. 

The project will centralise client admistration and support. 

First Minister Carwyn Jones said he was "hugely encouraged" at Cardiff's selection for the Centre of Excellence. 

He said: "This latest expansion which is set to create 100 jobs in Cardiff sends out a strong message that Wales is becoming the location of choice for companies operating in the professional and financial services sector that are looking to grow their business."

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Mercer & Hole appoints former Baker Tilly partner 

21 October - Andrew Lawes joins the firm with 25 years' experience at Baker Tilly and EY. 

He will joined Mercer & Hole as general practice partner and will be based at the firm's Milton Keynes and St Albans offices. 

Lawes has experience working with clients in a variety of industries, including manufacturing, automotive and property development and investment. 

Paul Maberly, senior partner at Mercer & Hole welcomed the appointment: “Andrew brings a wealth of knowledge with him and will be an excellent addition to Mercer & Hole. He specialises in working with owner managed businesses, helping and advising on all aspects of growing the business and planning for exit/succession.  His experience will add even more strength to the General Practice team.”

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Shorts appoints senior tax manager 

21 October - This is the firm's fourth senior appointment in the last 12 months at its Sheffield office. 

Adrian Dunkley will join the firm as senior tax manager and will work alongside other recent recruits, including Gary Moorhouse, Martin Pratt and Caroline Hawkins. 

The latest appointments brings the number at the firm's Sheffield office to nine. 

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ClearSky acquires Dorset firm

18 October - This is the second acquisition for the firm this year, having snapped up Middleton firm Michael Brookes & Co last June.

Lofts & Co, a tax advice firm with more than 150 clients based on Dorset, will become part of ClearSky accounting. 

ClearSky is part of the Optionis Group, whose managing director Derek Kelly said the deal was an "extremely exciting" part of the firms' growth. 

"The acquisition of Lofts & Co, a well-established practice with an excellent reputation and expertise in inheritance tax, trusts and tax planning, will broaden our offering to businesses and individuals.

“Crucially, it will also support our aim of establishing ClearSky as the ‘go-to’ source of fixed-fee advice and guidance for Britain’s small businesses."

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Baldwins expands corporate finance team

16 October - The firm has appointed a former RSM Tenon employee as a new senior executive.

Rory Dennis worked for six years at Tenon, where he qualified, and has two years' experience in its corporate finance team. 

He also spent four years in audit, tax and accounts department completing compliance work for small to medium sized businesses with turnover between £1m to £80m. 

Dennis will work out of the Nottingham office and cover 

The new senior executive said his choice to join Baldwins was down to wanting to gain greater experience of corporate transactions in the small to medium sized business market. 

"Baldwins is an ambitious firm that has grown its corporate finance offering significantly since the appointment of Mark Selby in 2011 as director of corporate finance," he said. 

Corporate finance director at Baldwins, Mark Selby added: "Being able to attract talent like Rory says much of our reputation in the market place and our commitment to invest for the future."

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Rice & Co opens Burton office 

14 October - The firm opened its new office after acquiring Burton-based Ayre & Co. 

Rice & Co is a 50-year-old firm based in Cannock and will bring its new space in Burton in line with its two existing offices. 

Senior employees at Ayre & Co have been kept on following the move. 

Director Chris Stonier said he was "delighted" with the expansion. 

"Ayre and Co were a well established firm in Burton with a great reputation and especially renowned for their work with growing businesses," he said. 

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Baker Tilly reveals senior promotions

8 October - Baker Tilly has announced the promotion of nine partners and 11 directors, across a number of service lines and regions, following its acquisition of RSM Tenon last month.

The move makes the newly-merged firm the seventh largest accountancy firm in the UK with annual revenues of £350m, and more than 4,000 partners and staff working across more than 50 offices.

The new promotions became effective from 1 October and are a combination of Baker Tilly and former Tenon staff.

Promotions to partner include:

·         Andrew Conti - forensics, advice on commercial and transaction disputes, claims against directors and fraud-related matters

·         Dan Harris - risk advisory and internal audit

·         Chris Knowles - IT advisory services, advises on IT strategy projects and programme management

·         David Moran - restructuring business finance, works with the invoice finance and asset-based lending market

·         Gavin Stewart - restructuring business finance, works with the invoice finance and asset-based lending market

·         Richard Haynes - financial management, specialises in employee benefit consulting and workplace pension reform

·         Mike Toole - operations and IT functions, financial management

·         Steve Jacob - business tax, advises on the tax aspects of corporate finance transactions and international tax

·         Mark Nisbett - audit, working mainly with international clients he specialises in advising them on working or expanding internationally, and leading the provision of their global audit and compliance services

Promotions to director include:

·         Andrew Cowking - business services,

·         Gareth Jones - audit

·         James Lye - audit

·         Lucy Dixon - accounts

·         Rebecca Prime - audit

·         Simon Cooper - audit & accounts, technical team

·         Kim Robinson - transaction services

·         Duncan Lyle - personal insolvency

·         David McComb - business tax

·         Jon Kicks - business tax

·         Marion Brewer - business tax

Laurence Longe, Baker Tilly’s national managing partner said: “These promotions are an important first step in recognising the talent and ambition of people within our newly-merged firm.

“The last few months have seen great change and growth for Baker Tilly, and these individuals will help to further strengthen and improve our offering to new and existing clients, as well as play an important role in the future success of the firm.”

* * *

Mitchell Charlesworth merges with Jennor & Co

7 October - Mitchell Charlesworth has announced its merge with Jennor & Co accountants.

Mitchell Charlesworth managing partner David Darlington said the deal would be hugely beneficial to both businesses and their clients, combining knowledge, skills and expertise.

It will further strengthen key departments at Mitchell Charlesworth including tax and payroll to help drive business growth.

The deal will see Widnes-based Jennor & Co managing director Jennifer Biggs and two members of staff relocate to Mitchell Charlesworth's Widnes office.

Darlington said: “We are delighted to be joining forces with Jennor & Co in a move which marks another significant shift in Mitchell Charlesworth's development.

“This is a hugely positive deal for both Mitchell Charlesworth and Jennor & Co clients which will now benefit from a greater depth of service than ever before. The Jennor & Co team bring more than 40 years' experience and a strong reputation built on professionalism and customer care. They have specialist knowledge in key areas which will strengthen our resources and assist us in expanding our own business.”

* * *

Begbies Traynor acquires Cooper Williamson

2 October - Begbies Traynor Group has completed the acquisition of the trade and assets of Cooper Williamson, the Manchester-based corporate insolvency specialist.

The acquisition is for an initial consideration of £0.9m, to be satisfied in cash of £0.45m and through the issue of 1,141,842 new ordinary shares of five pence each in Begbies Traynor Group.

There is a deferred consideration of up to £1.1m dependent on financial performance over the three years from completion, which may be satisfied in cash or by issuing new shares at the group's discretion. The Group has also agreed to further discretionary consideration of up to £0.5 million, subject to the firm meeting robust turnover targets in the following two years.

Cooper Williamson has successfully developed its own business rescue website, which has been a significant driver of new cases. To date, the firm has largely only been able to fulfil cases in its local region but, as part of the group, the combined business should benefit from the national opportunities it generates. 

In the year to 31 May 2013, the firm reported revenue of £1.7m and a pre-tax profit of £0.4m. Following completion, Cooper Williamson's client case load and management will join their existing Manchester office.

Ric Traynor, executive chairman of Begbies Traynor, said: “The acquisition of Cooper Williamson is an exciting development for us, and is in line with our strategy to enhance our position as the UK's leading independent insolvency practice.

“It will reinforce our presence in the North West and give us the opportunity to expand Cooper Williamson's already successful model and business rescue internet portal on a national scale.”

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