Moore Stephens senior management to join BDO board

The merger of BDO and Moore Stephens will see the senior management team join the board and a proportion of partners will be on the merged firm's partnership council when the deal is finalised in early 2019

Final discussions about the details of the merger and potential impact on staffing and offices are ongoing, with the aim of completing talks by spring 2019.

BDO has confirmed that the merged business will operate under the BDO brand and a number of Moore Stephens’ senior management will join the BDO leadership structure as members of the board.

Simon Gallagher, managing partner and Jon Randall, chief operating officer of Moore Stephens LLP will join the BDO board.

At the same time, a proportional representation of Moore Stephens’ partners will join the BDO partnership council.

The merged firm will be headed up by BDO managing partner Paul Eagland, who is currently mid-way through his four-year term as managing partner, a role which he took up in October 2016 through to October 2020.

When the firms merge, this will push BDO into number five position in the UK market with projected fee income of £590m and 5,000 staff across the UK. The firm will remain part of the BDO network globally, which has revenues of over $8bn (£6.23bn), is ranked in fifth spot and operates in 162 countries.

Moore Stephens LLP reported annual fee income of £134m according to the 2018 Accountancy Top 75 Firms survey. The remaining elements of Moore Stephens’ businesses, including the insurance consulting business, are not part of the merger talks. This accounts for a further £63m of total group revenue.

A spokesperson at Moore Stephens told Accountancy Daily: 'The rest of the group (ie, not the LLP) is not part of the merger. Those offices are remaining independent and will continue to trade.'

There are currently 83 partners at Moore Stephens LLP and 196 partners at BDO LLP. The proposed merger would bring total partner numbers to 279.

The proposed deal relates only to Moore Stephens LLP, consisting of the London, Birmingham, Reading, Bristol and Watford offices of the current Moore Stephens UK network.

In London, BDO – with its head office in Baker Street – plans to take on a second office in the City to accommodate the growth and retain a City-based presence for clients after the merger.

Moore Stephens’ leadership

Simon Gallagher is managing partner of Moore Stephens LLP and partner in the firm’s insurance industry group, specialising in audit, business and systems assurance, and regulation. He is also responsible for delivering risk management and regulatory consulting services across the insurance sector. He joined Moore Stephens in 1999 from Big Four firm KPMG and has over 20 years' professional experience of insurance within and outside the accounting profession, including the role of head of corporate accounting and control at an insurance group. He has extensive experience of auditing insurance and reinsurance companies and brokers in the UK and overseas.

Jon Randall is chief operating officer at Moore Stephens LLP. He is a member of the management team and has responsibility for developing and implementing the strategy of the firm. He joined Moore Stephens in 2014. Prior to this, he spent 18 years at RSM as chief operating officer for four years from 2010 to 2014, and senior managing partner roles from 2002 to 2010. RSM Tenon was sold to Baker Tilly UK in 2013, and the firm subsequently rebranded as RSM. Randall has over 20 years’ experience providing advice to professional service firms.

Report by Sara White


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