• Member firms in Kazakhstan and Australia have joined mid-tier
association Kreston International. Finaudit, based
in Kazakhstan’s largest city, Almaty, provides audit, accounting
and tax services…

PricewaterhouseCoopers UK has promised to
reduce energy consumption by 10 percent, cut down air travel and
completely stamp out waste that is sent to landfill by 2013…

• Russell Bedford International has increased its coverage in
south-east Europe by admitting correspondent Albanian firm
ZIG Consulting

• Deloitte Consulting has appointed an IT
expert who recently worked in the White House to advise clients on
the major transformation opportunities and technology issues facing
the US Government…

Africa, Asia, Oceania

• Member firms in Kazakhstan and Australia have joined mid-tier
association Kreston International. Finaudit, based
in Kazakhstan’s largest city, Almaty, provides audit, accounting
and tax services. The firm has 15 professionals and generates fee
income of about $500,000, of which 91 percent is derived from
audit. Finaudit is the regional representative of the Association
of the Taxpayers of Kazakhstan in Almaty. The firm’s clients
include state-owned enterprises, subsoil users, manufacturing
plants, foreign joint ventures, associated companies and
representative offices, and social funds.

Kreston International executive director Jon Lisby said the
number of business referrals involving Kazakhstan has been
increasing in recent years. “It was essential that we were able to
find a suitable firm to represent our members’ interests in this
region,” he said.

Kreston has also admitted specialist independent audit and
assurance firm Williams Partners Independent Audit Specialists. The
firm is based in the Australian state of Queensland.

• Malaysian firm Baker Tilly Monteiro Heng has
opened its first firm in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The new office is
one of only 21 approved audit firms in Cambodia. The firm will be
led by executive partner Andrew Heng, partner Lock Peng Kuan and
associate partner Joe Heng.

Peng Kuan said the Cambodian stock exchange is due to open in
December 2009.

“We are hoping to capture the pie of the pre-IPO transactions in
the privatisations of enterprises as well as the international
corporations and in view of the global economic slowdown, it will
be good strategy to invest in developing market like Cambodia,” he
said.

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) has opened its
first office in Algeria. It is the second Big Four firm to do so in
three months. The PwC office will be located in Algiers and will
offer audit, legal, tax and consulting services.

Big Four rival Ernst & Young established an office in
Algeria in September, offering advisory, audit, legal and finance
services. PwC is already present in Morocco and Tunisia and now
employs 250 people across the North Africa region.

PricewaterhouseCoopers India (PwC) has
acquired operations and human resources consulting services firm
ECS. ECS specialises in lean management including lean
manufacturing and lean services, six sigma, cost reduction and
people and change management.

Five partners and 100 consultants from ECS will join PwC.

Deloitte’s Asia-Pacific IFRS Centre of
Excellence in Hong Kong has published illustrative financial
statements for the year ended 31 December 2008.

The publication includes a 2008 annual report issued by a Hong
Kong listed company and a section that gives a summary of the key
changes to Hong Kong Financial Reporting Standards in issue as of
31 December 2008.

There is also a brief update on listing rules and other relevant
regulatory requirements. The statements do not reflect early
application of new and revised standards, amendments or
interpretations that were issued but are not mandatory for
2008.

Europe

Ernst & Young Spain (E&Y) has
appointed David Ruiz-Roso as an audit partner. Ruiz-Roso has 17
years of experience, including nine years at E&Y where he has
led audit teams in sectors such as energy, entertainment, tourism,
technology and food. Staffing figures for E&Y Spain grew 13
percent last year to reach 2,300, including 105 partners.

PricewaterhouseCoopers UK has promised to
reduce energy consumption by 10 percent, cut down air travel and
completely stamp out waste that is sent to landfill by 2013. The
firm made the pledge to a group of 20 suppliers at its second
sustainability forum this week.

The firm recently acquired Sustainable Finance Limited, an
international advisory firm focused on environmental and social
risk management in the financial sector. Sustainable Finance
Limited will join PwC’s sustainability and climate change team led
by Malcolm Preston.

• Russell Bedford International has increased its coverage in
south-east Europe by admitting correspondent Albanian firm
ZIG Consulting. The firm, based in the capital
Tirana, provides audit, accounting, bookkeeping and legal advisory
services. ZIG Consulting is managed by four partners, including
senior partner Olsi Ibro, and has four associates and seven junior
associates.

Ernst & Young Netherlands and Belgium
chair Jan Nooitgedagt will leave the firm on 1 March to become
chief financial officer of life insurance and pension group Aegon.
Nooitgedagt began his Ernst & Young career in 1980.

He has been chair of the Ernst & Young Netherlands and
Belgium board for two-and-a-half years and is also a member of the
board of Ernst & Young Europe, Middle East, India and
Africa.

• Former chief financial officer of Deutsche Bank Toni di Iorio
has joined Ernst & Young as a senior adviser
in its Europe, Middle East, India and Africa (EMEIA) financial
services organisation. In his new role, he will be working with the
financial services partners focused on the banking and capital
markets industry sector in EMEIA.

• KPMG UK head of audit Richard Bennison will be the next chief
operating officer of KPMG Europe. Bennison will
replace Colin Cook, who is retiring from the firm. Prior to
becoming UK head of audit in 2005, Bennison was a senior audit
partner in financial services. KPMG Europe subsidiaries operate in
the UK, Germany, Switzerland and the Netherlands. The combined firm
has more than 23,000 partners and staff, and recorded combined
revenues of more than €3.6 billion ($4.95 billion) in 2008.

• Eleven senior staff from IBM have joined Deloitte
UK
’s operation excellence advisory services team,
including partner Bill Kane and associate partner Geoff
Gibbons.

Other IBM members to join the firm are Peter Jordan, Andrew
O’Brien, Nicola Milne, Steve Kyle, Peter Brooke, Annika Osterberg,
Xavier Muller, Peter Hicks and Bianca Banda. The team provides
operations strategy, lean and six sigma services in the context of
broad-based operational transformation.

BDO Audiberia has opened an office on the
island of Tenerife, a part of the Canary Islands. The office,
located in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, will provide audit, risk
advisory and internal control, tax planning, commercial and legal
advice, corporate finance and management advisory services.

• UK firm Smith & Williamson is to acquire
a “significant interest” in Singapore-based Nexia TS. Both firms
are long-standing members of global accountancy network Nexia
International.

Smith & Williamson has 1,500 staff and reported operating
income of £170 million ($252 million) in the year ended 30 April
2008. Nexia TS has 90 staff, including six directors, and operates
from offices in Singapore and Shanghai.

Grant Thornton UK reported 25 percent growth
in revenue for its financial year ended 30 June 2008, following its
merger with professional services firm Robson Rhodes. Pre-tax
profits fell 5 percent to £72 million ($105 million) reflecting
merger costs and deteriorating economic conditions as a result of
the credit crisis, the firm said. The firm recorded a fee income of
£394 million compared to its previous year’s figure of £315
million, which did not include Robson Rhodes’ revenue.

• Danish firm MGI Revision has acquired the
audit firm Frans Thomsen, Statsautoriseret Revisionsaktieselskab.
Frans Thomsen is located in Copenhagen area and has nine full-time
employees. MGI Revision senior partner Jan Nygaard said the firm
considers this transaction a very important milestone in MGI
Revision’s ambitious growth. “With the acquisition, MGI Revision
has a total staff of 25 including six partners and a total annual
turnover of approximately €3.8 million,” he said.

BDO Stoy Hayward has appointed Ian Cottrell
as risk management director in its financial service group.
Cottrell joins the UK firm from KPMG where he worked as risk
director for 10 years.

North America, Latin America

RSM McGladrey, a wholly-owned subsidiary of
H&R Block, is on the hunt for a new leader after Steve Tait
revealed he would step down next April. Tait became president of
RSM McGladrey in 2003. Prior to joining the firm, he was executive
vice president of worldwide sales and client operations for the
Gartner Group, a technology research and advisory services
provider. Tait said the past six years had been among the most
rewarding of his professional life. “From a personal perspective,
however, I believe that this is a good time for me to pursue other
avenues and to have someone else lead McGladrey on the next phase
of its success journey,” he said.

Deloitte Consulting has appointed an IT
expert who recently worked in the White House to advise clients on
the major transformation opportunities and technology issues facing
the US Government. Timothy Young is the former deputy administrator
of the Office of E-Government and IT at the Office of Management
and Budget, a department in the President’s executive office. He
has accepted a position as senior manager with Deloitte’s Federal
Government Services group. In his previous position, Young led the
implementation of more than 35 government-wide initiatives. He also
oversaw the development and implementation of the federal
enterprise architecture and IT policies around information access
and dissemination, capital planning and investment control,
privacy, cybersecurity, identity management and records
management.

Alvarez and Marsal (A&M) has appointed
Keith Ghezzi as managing director of its healthcare industry group
in the US. Ghezzi will be based in the firm’s Washington DC office.
He previously founded and worked for Ghezzi and Associates as a
turnaround specialist in health organisations.

Guy Sansone, managing director and head of A&M’s healthcare
industry group, commented: “Keith’s unique mix of clinical,
financial and management expertise has helped him to successfully
lead and advise institutions on business strategy, market
positioning, service delivery and operational improvements, and
enables him to provide a fresh perspective on the challenges
currently facing the healthcare sector.”

• Minneapolis firm Froehling Anderson has
joined AGN International. Froehling Anderson has 10 partners and 44
staff. It provides business consulting, tax and accounting services
to manufacturers, distributors, commercial real estate and
construction companies, and professional service organisations.
Managing partner Douglas Galka will join the board of directors of
AGN North America.

• MGI’s New York based member firm, Graf Repetti &
Co
, has merged with fellow New York firm Marx,
Lange, Gutterman
. Graf Repetti & Co offers audit, tax,
business consulting and litigation support services from its
offices in New York City and Long Island. Marx, Lange, Gutterman
will help strengthen the firm’s key industry sectors, including
real estate, professional practices and financial services, chief
operating officer John Repetti said.

• Luc Villeneuve is to take over as president of Samson
Bélair/Deloitte & Touche
, Deloitte’s practice in
Quebec, Canada. Villeneuve will replace Denis Boivin who announced
his retirement after 36 years at the firm, including nine years as
president.

Villeneuve has worked as a partner since 1985 and became part of
Deloitte’s board of directors in 2007. Deloitte employs 1,900
people in Quebec, which represents a quarter of the firm’s Canadian
workforce.

• Praxity US member firm BKD has acquired
Arkansas-based firm Lundy Allard & Co to further expand its
services in the area. Partner Mark Lundy, three professionals and
10 staff from Lundy Allard & Co will join BKD, bringing an
estimated $1.2 million of revenue to the firm. BKD currently has 31
offices in 12 states including three offices in Fort Smith, Little
Rock and Pine Bluff, Arkansas. It has more than 2,000 personnel and
about 250 partners.

• Leading Edge Alliance US member firms Gray
CPA
and Freed Maxick & Battaglia have
merged, effective from 1 January 2009. Freed Maxick Battaglia is a
regional firm in New York State, while Grey CPA was based in
Rochester, New York. The combined firm is now operating as Freed
Maxick Battaglia. The merger will expand the governmental and tax
practices at Freed Maxick, which represent two of the firm’s
leading service areas, and increase staff numbers to 260
people.