CogitalGroup announces acquisition of Wilkins Kennedy

CogitalGroup announces acquisition of Wilkins Kennedy

International business services group CogitalGroup has acquired top 20 accountancy firm Wilkins Kennedy in its largest acquisition since its launch

International business services group CogitalGroup has acquired top 20 accountancy firm Wilkins Kennedy in its largest acquisition since its launch. 

Wilkins Kennedy will join CogitalGroup’s UK business Baldwins, which was acquired in 2016 

The move will see Wilkins Kennedy’s senior partner William Payne become regional managing director with responsibility for the South Region. Payne will also join the board of Baldwin Holdings.  

Baldwins’ South Region will operate as Wilkins Kennedy: a CogitalGroup Company. 

The acquisition boosts CogitalGroup’s client numbers to 70,000. Its number of employees will rise to 6,000 with the number of offices increasing to 170 across the UK, Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland, and in technology centres in Romania and Lithuania. Once the acquisition has been completed, CogitalGroup will have annualised revenue of nearly £500m. 

John Connolly, executive chairman of CogitalGroup, said: “On behalf of everyone within Cogital, I am delighted to welcome our new colleagues from Wilkins Kennedy into our Group. This development represents a further significant step forward for CogitalGroup as we complete the first year of our five year plan to build a leading, technology driven, international business services group. Wilkins Kennedy is a highly regarded firm with a strong position in the entrepreneurial and private company market, which is the significant market segment where we focus.“

John Baldwin, founder of Baldwins and CEO of Cogital UK Regional Division, said“We are very excited to welcome Wilkins Kennedy into our Group. Our increased scale and market focus, supported by the broader CogitalGroup, gives us a great platform to deliver to our clients. First and foremost, CogitalGroup is about client service and we know that there is a great fit in this regard with our new colleagues from Wilkins Kennedy. We are extremely optimistic about our competitive advantage, which is underpinned by the quality of service that our motivated and highly talented team are better placed than ever to deliver.“

In May this year, Wilkins Kennedy announced a merger with Bourne End-based firm M R Salvage with the firm’s expected turnover increasing to £55m. In 2017, the firm positioned at 18 in the 2017 Top 50+50 ranking with UK fee income of £47.7m. Begbies Traynor Group placed at 17 with UK fee income of £49.7m behind MHA MacIntyre on £56.1m.

Payne commented: “We are delighted to be joining the CogitalGroup at this key milestone in their growth story and to be representing the business across the South of England. We have a shared vision for the quality of service we can offer our clients, across both accounting and broader business services. The CogitalGroup offers us a superb platform from which to continue to support our clients and provide terrific opportunities for our talented people as we continue our growth story.“

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