Scottish based accountancy firm, Johnston Carmichael, has opened a London office as part of a strategic expansion of its financial services sector offering
The new location is the first premises the independent firm has opened outside Scotland since it was set up over 80 years ago.
The London office will be headed up by Ewen Fleming, financial services partner, who joined Johnston Carmichael in March 2019 and has over 30 years’ experience in financial services in both industry and advisory roles. His areas of expertise include retail banking, wealth management and business consulting.
Since being appointed, Fleming has been central to expanding Johnston Carmichael’s financial services capability.
Fleming will be based between the London City office and Edinburgh.
He said: ‘With London and Edinburgh well established as the UK’s key financial services hubs, launching an office in the UK capital is the obvious next step for Johnston Carmichael in expanding its financial services offering. It will enable us to work much more closely with our clients based in the south east of England and it’s also important to building our network of contacts, including potential new staff as we add to our growing team.’
Recent hires for Johnston Carmichael’s London office include manager Sam Church, who specialises in data innovation and strategy development for the banking and insurance markets, and consulting senior Hyder Cheema, who trained at the Big Four and has extensive domestic and international experience in the financial services sector.
Pictured: Samuel Church, Ewen Fleming, Hyder Cheema
Fleming added: ‘Banks have faced a number of challenges in recent years, ranging from evolving customer requirements to the growing digitalisation of services. Socio-economic factors such as Brexit have also had an effect.’
The UK financial services industry is amongst the biggest worldwide and in 2018 contributed £132bn to the UK economy, representing 6.9% of total economic output. The sector was largest in London where almost half – 49% - of its output was generated.
Financial services is one of Johnston Carmichael’s fastest growing business areas, offering a wide range of services from risk and assurance, including regulatory compliance and advice, to tax and VAT, performance improvement, distribution strategy, deal support and managing complex change.
Andrew Walker, CEO of Johnston Carmichael, said: ‘Our London office is a very significant step forward for our firm. Although we already carry out a range of cross-border work, this is our first permanent geographical base outside of Scotland.
‘We are committed to playing a bigger role in the financial services sector and contributing to a positive, resilient industry. Our London office is central to achieving our ambitious aims. Johnston Carmichael is in this for the long term.’
The London office brings to 13 the number of locations operated by Johnston Carmichael across the UK, including its recently launched office in Dundee. The firm is also a member of PKF International, a global network of accountancy firms operating in 440 cities worldwide.