Baldwins group rebrands as Azetsby
The fast-growing Cogital Group, which includes the Baldwins chain of UK accountancy firms, today rebranded itself as Azets.
At a stroke former Top 50 names such as Baldwins, Wilkins Kennedy and Campbell Dallas will take on the identity of a European organisation better known for its business processing and technology expertise.
Blick Rothenberg, however, which is poised to celebrate its 75 anniversary, will retain its name while remaining a part of the Azets business.
As part of the rebrand, much of the previous information about Cogital Group’s 2016-18 acquisition spree has disappeared from the revamped Azets website (pictured above), but at last count, more than 30 UK accountancy firms had been scooped up in a strategy masterminded by former Deloitte global chairman John Connolly and the private equity house HgCapital, which also has stakes in the UK’s Access Group, IRIS and BrightPay.
The organisation characterised the move as creating a UK and European accounting, advisory and business services group. “Clients across the enlarged Azets group and Blick Rothenberg will gain the benefits of significant synergies, including the option to access additional services, skill sets and an international offering, whilst retaining a personal local service,” the company said.
Unifying the brand represents the next phase in the group’s development and will enable its 6,500 strong team to better serve a client base of 120,000 organisations, according to CEO Dawn Marriott. The rebranding exercise follows on the heels of “significant investment” in technology in the shape of the group’s CoZone digital workplace.
CoZone supports key business processes including general ledgers, accounts payable, accounts receivable, along with payroll and HR.
Alongside the CoZone development work, Azets is involved in developing an HR system in Denmark and does implementation work around Visma’s enterprise resource management (ERP) systems. The platform is used by internally by client businesses or to support business process outsourcing (BPO) on their behalf within the Azets group.
In some of the UK practices, CoZone also links into Silverfin’s data management and reporting environment and Fluidly’s cashflow forecasting and funding platform.
According to Principle Point MD and accountancy market watcher Richard Sergeant, the Azets name change moves the group away from the more provincial-sounding Baldwins accountancy brand to a more techie brand. Behind the scenes, however, the firm is facing a long and rocky road integrating very different firms.
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