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April 30, 2008

Horwath expands UAE footprint

Horwath International has admitted one of the largest firms in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Established in 1981, Horwath Mak has 18 offices and 350 staff, which includes 250 staff and 13 office locations in the UAE. It also has offices in Iran and Oman.

The firm was previously a member of AGN International but opted to join Horwath International when AGN decided to be classified as an association of independent firms. Horwath Mak director Zayd Maniar told IAB: “AGN no longer wished to be a network, it became an association, so if you are an association you cannot have common branding, [whereas] networks can. At Horwath we can use Horwath Mak, but if we stay at AGN we would have to lose ‘AGN’. The market might see the [brand] as something we have lost rather than something we have been forced to give up.”

Horwath International chief executive Frank Arford said the addition of Horwath Mak is in line with the network’s global strategic plan.

Riding a crest Horwath Mak has more than 3,000 clients and half of those are medium-sized entities. Although it does not specialise in serving any particular sector, the firm is currently riding on the crest of Dubai’s economic boom. It has a broad spectrum of clients in industries ranging from gold refinery to foreign exchange.

The firm is directed by an executive committee led by Khalid Maniar, Krishnamurthy, James Mathew, Mago JB Singh, Davis Kallukaran and Atik Munshi.

Describing the firm’s position in the Dubai market, Maniar said Horwath Mak is positioned just below the Big Four. Although PricewaterhouseCoopers and KPMG are the largest firms in the region in terms of work force, IAB understands Horwath Mak is not too much smaller in size than the smallest of the Big Four.

Maniar believes membership in Horwath International will provide the firm with support, quality and referral work. He said the firm has been growing annually at a steady rate and predicts this trend will continue.

Arvind Hickman

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