In the latest move to strengthen its offering in the private enterprise space, Deloitte has tucked in 12-partner firm GMK Partners.
This is the first significant move of its kind under new chief executive Cindy Hook, but it follows a number of similar deals undertaken over the past year.
In 2014, Moore Stephens Sydney West and Perth-based firm KD Johns & Co joined Deloitte’s private team while the consulting and cloud advisory team from The Lonsdale Group joined Deloitte in February of this year.
Ms Hook said the strong private clients play by Deloitte comes at an exciting time of transition for many of Australia's great family businesses and large private companies.
“We are seeing accounting, tax advisory, succession planning and business restructuring services in great demand in this important part of the Australian economy,” she said.
Sneza Pelusi, Deloitte Private managing partner, said Deloitte's private clients push also comes as technological innovation drives significant change in professional services.
“Cloud technologies give savvy business owners the ability to access their live and up-to-the-moment financial information from anywhere at any time and on any device,” she said.
“This ability to provide business owners with a real-time view of their financial performance has the potential to change the way they think about their business and, in particular, the timeliness within which they can make decisions to optimise performance.
“The launch of Deloitte Private Connect - our cloud-based offering that combines shared ledger accounting with automated bookkeeping, benchmarking, an online portal and many other digital technologies - has been a transformational investment for Deloitte Private. It continues to revolutionise the way we work with our clients,” Ms Pelusi said.
Kevin Slomoi, a director of GMK, said the GMK staff are excited to join the big four firm and take advantage of the additional resources and expertise that will be on offer.
“Joining Deloitte Private will expand the multidisciplinary services our team can access to serve our loyal client base, such as new and innovative cloud-based technology as well as the intellectual property and deep experience within Deloitte’s broader practice areas such as specialist tax advice and M&A advisory,” Mr Slomoi said.
“Our people will be able to access the benefits of being part of the global Deloitte network, an innovative firm focused on developing new products and services, which will provide them with increased opportunities for career development.”
GMK Partners was advised by law firm Arnold Bloch Leibler (ABL) in the matter, with ABL commercial partner Ross Paterson noting the transaction is very significant in the private client accounting space.
“We were very pleased to advise GMK given the nature of the transaction and our long-standing relationship. Transactions of this nature reflect our professional services sector experience and deep involvement in the private client market.”
“Prior to the transaction, the partners of GMK and Deloitte Private were well known to each other, and to us. The respect and enthusiasm demonstrated by all involved facilitated a particularly smooth process”, said Mr Ross.