The Melbourne office of William Buck will merge with fellow accounting firm Grant Thornton from 26 May as Grant Thornton continues to build scale to take on the big four accounting firms.
The current manager of Grant Thornton’s Melbourne office, Greg Keith, says William Buck Melbourne’s partners were keen to join a firm with a national and international presence.
For Grant Thornton, the deal is all about scale. It will increase Grant Thornton’s annual revenue from $100 million to $160 million and take total staff numbers to 800, including 100 partners. It is the second big deal since Grant Thornton acquired the Perth office of Bentley’s MRI in September 2007.
Keith says the firm remains on the outlook for more acquisitions or mergers. “We’ve got a clearly defined and well advertised vision to increase revenue to $300 million by 2011. We’ll be clearly outside the big four and clearly outside the mid-sized practices.”
Keith says William Buck Melbourne’s SME clients will benefit from the expanded reach of Grant Thornton and should find it easier, for example, to move interstate or pursue export opportunities. “They’ll now be able to benefit from greater local service offering and gain from our national and international expertise.”
Grant Thornton’s enlarged Melbourne office, to be run by William Buck Melbourne’s managing partner Ian Herman, will now have 31 partners and 320 staff.