Lakhani & Co Merges with Baker Tilly

Tax firm Lakhani to join Baker Tilly along with its 10 part­ners and 80 tax ex­perts

The Economic Times - - Companies: Pursuit Of Profit - Sachin.Dave@ times­group.com

Mum­bai: In yet an­other merger, Baker Tilly DHC, the In­dian arm of Baker Tilly In­ter­na­tional, has taken one of the coun­try’s re­puted tax firms, Lakhani & Co LLP, into its fold. With this merger, Baker Tilly DHC hopes to ex­pand its pres­ence in the lu­cra­tive tax­a­tion con­sul­tancy, where some niche In­dian firms and the Big Four dom­i­nate. Fol­low­ing this merger, Lakhani & Co would join the Baker Tilly DHC along with its 10 part­ners and 80 tax ex­perts. Dilip V Lakhani, Man­ag­ing Part­ner with the 40-year-old Mum­bai firm, would also join Baker Tilly DHC as a se­nior part­ner. “We have seen tremen­dous growth of our ser­vices in the past few years and with this in­te­gra­tion, we will be able to ser­vice a larger set of clients in the Baker Tilly net­work,” said Lakhani. Re­cently, Baker Tilly DHC also mer- ged with four other firms in a bid to scale up its op­er­a­tions. Baker Tilly DHC, which cur­rently has about 1,300 peo­ple on board, in­clud­ing around 100 part­ners in In­dia, would add 500 peo­ple af­ter the in­te­gra­tion of the firms. “We have a strong tax­a­tion prac­tice but with this merger, our tax­a­tion prac­tice will be one of the strong­est in the co- un­try,” said Dilip B De­sai, chair­man, Baker Tilly DHC.

In­dus­try track­ers said that pro­fes­sional ser­vices firms are wit­ness­ing a healthy growth in tax­a­tion con­sul­tancy af­ter the new reg­u­la­tions have come into play. While the Big Four — EY, PwC, Deloitte and KPMG — have the big­gest foot­print in terms of the num­ber of peo­ple and rev­enue, some of the niche In­dian firms too have made a mark. Dhruva, founded by a well­known tax ex­pert Di­nesh Kan­abar, has set up a solid tax­a­tion prac­tice out­side of the Big Four. Sim­i­larly, Mum­bai-based BMR Ad­vi­sors has man­aged to carve out a niche for it­self. Go­ing ahead, some of the niche tax­a­tion con­sul­tan­cies could also see con­sol­i­da­tion as many firms con­tinue to re­main per­son­al­ity driven ones, said in­dus­try track­ers.

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