Azets Ireland to merge with PKF O’Connor, Leddy & Holmes

22 Feb 2024, 15:45

Azets Ireland today announces its intention to merge with PKF O’Connor, Leddy & Holmes which will see the two firms come together under the Azets brand upon completion of the deal.


Azets Ireland to merge with PKF O’Connor, Leddy & Holmes

PKF O’Connor, Leddy & Holmes is an industry-leading business, employing a team of more than 100 people with offices in Dublin and Waterford. The firm has built a strong track record in the provision of the full range of audit, accountancy, tax, and advisory services for the past sixty years.

The merger will double the size of Azets’ Irish business and create a firm of national scale with the depth of expertise to deliver quality Partner-led services to established and ambitious businesses, business owners, and Not-for-profit organisations in Ireland.

Neil Hughes will remain as CEO of Azets Ireland with Donal O’Leary, the current Managing Partner in PKF O’Connor, Leddy & Holmes, assuming the role of Chairman.

PKF’s Susan Wylie (Business Services and Outsourcing), Catherine McGovern (Tax), David McGarry (Audit), Keith Doyle (Audit), Declan De Lacy (Restructuring), David Lucas (Corporate Finance), Eoin Kenny (Tax), Kevin Quinn (Tax), and Jack Swinburne (Corporate Finance) will remain as Partners.

The combined firm will be based at Azets’ new offices at 40 Mespil Road, Dublin 4 with a regional South East presence in Enniscorthy and Waterford.

Azets Ireland is one of the country’s fastest growing professional services firms, providing a range of services, including audit, due diligence, valuation, M&A, tax, restructuring, corporate governance, and fund management.

The merger represents a significant milestone on the Group’s ambitious growth journey as it looks to further expansion in line with its five-year strategy through the delivery of personalised client services, underpinned by investments in technology.

In March 2023, Azets announced its intention to scale the Ireland business to more than 220 employees by the end of 2024. Today’s announcement ensures that the firm achieves that goal 12 months early, with expanded plans to employ 400 people by the end of 2025 and significant opportunities for current employees to progress through the expanded organisation.

Neil Hughes , CEO of Azets Ireland said: “ The merger of Azets Ireland and PKF O'Connor, Leddy & Holmes will be a game-changing moment for Ireland’s professional services sector. By combining our expertise and our teams of talented individuals, we are creating a firm of national scale that is uniquely positioned to meet the needs of Ireland’s entrepreneurial, owner-managed, and family-owned businesses.

“For too long, strong mid-sized companies that are on a journey from good to great are often ignored by the big six accountancy firms. This is despite these businesses being the lifeblood of the Irish economy and sustaining more than one million jobs in communities across Ireland. This is where we excel; we pride ourselves on understanding the needs and dynamics of ambitious businesses.

“Through this new investment, we can better serve our clients and help them navigate an evolving environment. With rising wages, new regulatory obligations, high interest rates and a slowing economy, our clients need expert advice now more than ever.”

Donal O’Leary , Managing Partner of PKF O'Connor, Leddy & Holmes and incoming Chairman of Azets Ireland , said: “ We’re delighted to join forces with Azets Ireland. The company is on an ambitious growth trajectory and this progressive move represents a huge opportunity for our firm – for our people, our clients, and our services.

“The company is on an ambitious growth trajectory and this progressive move represents a huge opportunity for our firm – for our people, our clients, and our Partner led services.

“It also presents an even greater opportunity to support under-served, growing mid-market firms who are the emerging and established leaders in their industries in Ireland. By coming together, we can enhance the level of expertise we provide, with the ability to deliver more specialist Partner-led, sector-specific services and integrate new technologies.

“Azets’ investment in people, professional development, and technology will also help unlock new opportunities for our talented team to progress through the organisation.

“As Azets Ireland, we have plans to keep growing and hiring top quality professionals and graduates who are passionate about providing a high-quality personal service to ambitious businesses and building their own careers as business advisors.

“I look forward to working with Neil and the team as we build on our shared values and collective strengths to support the ambitions of owner-managed and private equity-backed businesses in Ireland and help them to grow and innovate long into the future.”

Chris Horne , Group CEO of Azets , commented: “I want to welcome our newest colleagues from PKF O'Connor, Leddy & Holmes, a firm with an excellent reputation that is a perfect strategic and cultural fit. The combination of our companies represents another significant milestone in our Pathway strategy, as we continue to disrupt the Irish professional services market to better serve growing entrepreneur-led businesses.”

Azets Ireland will become one of the top ten professional services firms in Ireland and is well positioned to emerge as the advisor of choice for successful entrepreneurial, owner-managed and family-owned businesses.

Azets was advised by the Corporate team at Pinsent Masons Ireland, led by Gerry Beausang and Conall Ennis.

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