Grant Thornton Russia has merged with assurance and consulting firm Rosexpertiza, expanding its presence in the country.
Rosexpertiza has 30 partners and 650 staff at offices across the country, including Moscow, St Petersburg and Kazan. In International Accounting Bulletin’s most recent Russia survey, Grant Thornton would now have more staff than the seventh largest firm RSM Top Audit, which has 542 people.
Managing partners of the combined firm will be Sergey Aslibekian and Alexander Kozlov.
“This merger of our fast growing firm with a true pioneer of the Russian assurance and consulting services market is one of the first examples of consolidation amongst major audit companies in the local market and it will certainly set a trend,” Grant Thornton Russia current managing partner Aslibekian said.
Aslibekian told International Accounting Bulletin he would not rule out further merger activities.
“As far as I am concerned we hope to continue our expansion: one of the key-elements of our strategy in Russia is growing by M&A activities, as you can see looking at our history,” he said. “We’ll always be looking at the market and we’ll continue to look at the market.”
Assuming the Russian GDP will continue to grow, Aslibekian said the accounting market will continue to grow, “though not a double-digit growth and subject to a number of things, including the whole world economic situation”.
Rosexpertiza general director Alexander Kozlov added the decision to merge was taken to strengthen the firm’s market position.
Grant Thornton International chief executive Ed Nusbuam said: “Russia is a key market in the global economy and immensely important to us. I look forward to seeing the firm go from strength to strength in the coming years.”