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April 30, 2008

WHK strengthens grip on Australian mid-tier

WHK strengthens grip on Australian mid-tier

Horwath International member WHK Group has cemented its position as the largest of the Australian mid-tier organisations through the acquisition of two new businesses as stand-alone member firms.

The Australian Securities Exchange-listed group said the acquisitions of the 13-partner William Buck from Brisbane and six-partner West Yates from New Zealand’s South Island are of strategic importance.

William Buck Brisbane is a business advisory, chartered accounting and financial planning firm with 110 staff and annual turnover of about A$17 million ($14.8 million). WHK Group said the firm is an important addition as it will provide the group with a strong presence in the rapidly growing Brisbane market, as well as expanding its network of capital city firms.

The firm is WHK Group’s largest accounting and financial acquisition to date and has excellent prospects for future growth, including within major growth centres near Brisbane, the group said. The firm will adopt the name WHK Horwath, making it consistent with Sydney, Melbourne and Perth member firms.

West Yates becomes WHK Group’s sixth New Zealand member firm. It has about 65 staff and annual revenue of approximately A$5.8 million. The group said the firm offers traditional accounting and tax services to a large client base, predominantly in the SME market, covering a wide range of industry sectors, including primary production, property, professional services, manufacturing, retail and distribution.

At the completion of these transactions, WHK Group will be composed of 21 member firms and will have annualised revenue in excess of A$400 million. These transactions will increase total acquired revenue in the current financial year to approximately A$31.6 million.

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