Horwath Clark Whitehall, the UK member firm of Crowe Horwath International, has 10 different departments, and consistently stresses its friendly, client-centred approach. Its accounting solutions provide a variety of accountancy management services to companies ranging from the startup phase to well-established organisations. Its team deals with companies based in the UK as well as US or European companies outside the country looking to invest in the UK. The assurance division’s experts are broken into four teams: corporates, not-for-profits, professional practices and professional funds. Within the corporate finance division, the majority of its deals fall between £5 million and £50 million. Its employer services team can advise clients on one compliance issue, design a new benefits package, or anything in between. Financial planning aims to ensure that clients, whether individual or corporate, receive objective, bespoke advice.
Forensic services’ principals act as expert witnesses or advisers in personal or corporate disputes. They are supported by a team of forensic accounting specialists and other experts within the firm. The firm has taken on this role in more than 1,500 cases. Its risk and assurance department offers organizations internal audit services, risk management consultancy and related software. In terms of strategic planning, staff will help businesses define their aspirations and outline a plan that will enable them to achieve these goals. The tax department at Horwath Clark Whitehall offers comprehensive tax compliance, planning and advisory services to its clients in the private and nonprofits sectors. VAT staff advise clients on changes and complexities in VAT procedures, as well as on how to meet VAT obligations and minimize VAT liabilities.
The firm focuses on five sector areas: corporate, not-for-profit, professional practices, pension funds and private clients. It is perhaps best-known for its professional services expertise and its strong not-for-profit operations.
Tracing their roots
Clark Whitehill came into being in 1982, following a merger between Clark Pixley and Fryer Whitehill & Co, firms which can trace their history back to 1843. (A rather intricate family tree, available online, shows the genealogy in detail.) Its regional presence grew quickly in the 1980s and new offices in Kidderminster, Maidstone, Newbury, Reading, Walsall and Manchester opening within a three-year period. In 1994, Clark Whitehill became the UK representative of Horwath International but retained its name until January 1998, when it became Horwath Clark Whitehill. It completed conversion to a limited liability partnership in 2004. Responding to requirements for greater auditor independence within the profession-at-large, Horwath Clark Whitehill was the first firm outside the Big Four to separate from its consultancy practice.
Today, Crowe Horwath International has 465 offices in 394 cities, concentrated in 87 countries worldwide.
A charitable firm
Andrew Pianca, the Burma-bred chief executive of Horwath Clark Whitehall, began focusing on the charity sector in 1992. At that time, not-for-profits’ oblique finances and inconsistent accounting practices led to decreased confidence in the sector and resulted in legislation such as the Charities Acts of 1992 and 1993, which required them to produce clearer and more consistent financial records. Pianca has become a widely consulted authority on the sector, having written two books on charity management and reporting. He also lectures frequently on it, as well as on governance and management.
The dual role of chief executive and senior audit partner specialising in the not-for-profit sector has given Pianca a perhaps more interesting array of meetings than many accountants can expect. As he told Accountancy Age, “If I get my day right I can be with Age Concern in the morning, lunch is at Charterhouse School and then be on to the Labour Party for an evening reception.”
St Bride's House
10 Salisbury Square
London EC4Y 8EH
Phone: 44 (0) 20 7842 7100
Employer Type: Private
Chief Executive: Andrew Pianca
2007 Employees (All Locations): 560
London, United Kingdom