Grant Thornton International has recorded combined global revenues of $5.45bn for the financial year ended 30 September 2018, driven by broad-based growth of 9.4% across the network, its highest rate in six years
Tax services experienced the strongest growth, accounting for 22% of total revenue ($1.19bn, up by 14.8%). Assurance services made up approximately 39% of total revenues ($2.1bn, up 4.3%), advisory services 35% ($1.92bn, up 10.4%), and other services accounted for 3% at $145m.
Grant Thornton International reported that over 20% of the growth in 2018 came from mergers and acquisitions - more in both volume and value than in the previous two years. In total, there were 24 deals from 10 firms with the Japanese merger being the largest and Canada LLP being the most active by number.
The network also reported above average growth in Europe, up 7.7% at $1.75bn, with over half of European member firms growing revenues by over 10%. Ireland (24.4%), Greece (23.1%) and Spain (21.3%) performed particularly well.
The Americas remain the network’s largest market with revenues of $.5bn, a 5.7% increase. The network also recorded particularly strong growth in Africa (up 54.7%) and Asia Pacific (up 18.7%).
Across the Asia Pacific region, 42% of member firms grew revenues by over 10%. In Africa, seven member firms grew their revenue by over 20% and the network welcomed SizweNtsalubaGobodo, the largest black-owned firm in South Africa, to the network.
Peter Bodin, CEO Grant Thornton International Ltd, said: ‘Our success this year is the result of a deliberate strategic focus on our core mid-market client base, and our key strategic growth markets where we want to be successful. Being clear on where we need to develop our capabilities, and focusing on quality in those core markets, has underpinned this performance.
‘Despite growing uncertainty in many markets this year from political upheaval and rising trade tensions, trading conditions have remained robust for clients around the world. Many have taken advantage of these favourable conditions to invest for the long-term and prepare for the uncertain conditions that may lay ahead.’
The largest merger of the year took place in Japan with the addition of Yusei Audit Co. and Yamada & Partners Certified Public Tax Accountants’ Co. to the network, adding 900 new staff.
The number of people in the Grant Thornton network globally grew by 6.3% to 52,686 people in 131 countries. The network brought in seven new member firms - Austria, Cameroon, Dutch Caribbean, Lebanon, Malawi, Mongolia and South Africa as well as the creation of an EU Services Joint Venture.
Report by Pat Sweet