Paul Langhorn is going to be clocking up a lot of air miles in the next four months. RSM International’s (RSMI) new executive director for Europe is planning to visit as many of the network’s 26 European firms as possible in the first quarter of this year.
The world’s seventh highest revenue earning accountancy group has a broad sweep in Europe covering everywhere from and Scandinavia to Malta and Israel with a combined staff of 3,566 and fee income of $455.3 million.
“One of my first roles is to visit as many of the network firms to understand them,” Langhorn said. “I am very keen to understand their markets because one of the critical roles [of this position] is to understand the market for professional services in whichever country and also the positioning of our firm in that particular country.”
The role is an intra-networking one: developing new and existing members and being the “eyes and ears of the network”. The European director said once new firms were bedded in it will be about looking for business opportunities and trying to capitalise on them.
“[This involves] looking at clients of the network that we already service on a local level and developing those into international and transnational clients,” he said. In his new position Langhorn will devote 60 percent of his time to his new role and 40 percent as a corporate partner in the network’s UK firm RSM Bentley Jennison. RSMI chief executive Jean Stephens said Langhorn’s experience in managing cross-border client activity and regional business development ensured he was well equipped for the role.
Langhorn said it is an exciting time to be doing business in Europe: “There’s a lot more movement if you look at the way Europe is expanding the new countries coming into the EU, for example Poland joining the EU now and wanting to work closer within the EU.”
He said the development of Europe presents the opportunity for significant growth. “I see that 2008 is almost a year for Europe within our network. We do really wish to expand it and springboard off it, 2008 has a lot of opportunities for us. Particularly the new firms that have come into the network in the last 12 months – the largest being Bentley Jennison,” he said.