Global consulting heavyweight opens shop in Addis
Deloitee Touche Tohmatsu Limited (DTTL), a global network of member firms; officially launched its office in Ethiopia.
Deloitee is the brand name under which tens of thousands of dedicated professionals in independent firms throughout the world collaborate to provide audit, consulting, financial advisory, risk management and tax services to selected clients. These firms are members of DTTL, a UK private company.
The opening on February 6 follows a merger agreement, in July 2012, between Deloitee and a leading Ethiopian accountancy firm HST.
With its entry into Ethiopia, and recent office openings in South Sudan and Libya, Deloitee now has a presence in 34 African countries.
Deloitee said the merger is the first of its kind in terms of partnership of professional accountancy service firm in Ethiopia and brings with it a combined experience of over 20 years in the local market. The new firm named Deloitee Consulting PLC will be based in Addis Ababa and will provide assurance, consulting, financial, tax and risk advisory services to clients in both the private and public sectors.
Sammy Onyango, CEO of Deloitee East Africa said this new office will help to have even more pool of local experts that can solve any problem in any industry area, leveraging of global expertise.
However this is not the firm’s first foray into Ethiopia. Deloittee last year fully acquired the South African mining consultancy firm Venmyn Rand, which undertakes technical and economic advisory for businesses and has already been involved in techno-economic advice on potash deposits in the Danakil Depression in Afar Regional State.
Onyango further said that Africa and particularly Ethiopia offer a compelling case for investment and expansion, with their strong economic growth.
One area of attention was the shifting of trade patterns towards emerging economies such as China and India which continue to gain momentum.
“We want to be first in the game”
Deloitee also acknowledged that there could be challenges with its business in Ethiopia which is still largely a closed business environment, with dominance of small and medium enterprises.
Steve Arnold Global Chairman of Deloitee stated that the firm entered into the Ethiopian market with a view to being a leader in the area.
He also said that the firm isn’t just interested in big multinational companies, with its biggest segment of revenue the middle market reaching USD 30 billion in 2012 .
Deloitee’s revenue in African reached USD 664 million.
“We seek to differentiate ourselves not on prices but on client service delivery in a competitive market,” said Arnold adding that within the next three decades the African continent population is expected to hit the nine billion mark, which is a large customer base.
Deloitee says it will focus its activities in Ethiopia in the mining and agricultural sectors.
Arnold in particular mentioned that it hopes to help the African continent in agro-biz consulting, with increased and sustainable agriculture, such as through modern farming techniques and persuading end users to buy food more wisely.