Awards 2006: Bentley Jennison – Large firm of the year

aa awards 2006

Sponsored by Integral Search & Selection

An ambitious acquisition programme allied to strong organic growth has put
Bentley Jennison within striking distance of a key ambition ­ to become a top 10
national accountancy firm.

With six acquisitions over the 2005/06 period, new offices in London and
Edinburgh, a strong corporate finance offering and a 19% hike in fee income to
nearly £60m, Bentley Jennison has become a national accountancy brand. By doing
so, it has won this year’s Large Firm of the Year Award.

Over the past 12 months, Bentley Jennison has seen 50% growth in its
consultancy and financial services divisions. It has also launched a new
information systems assurance business, providing risk insurance, internal IT
audit, business continuity services and data management.

As well its new City office, Bentley Jennison has opened for business in
Edinburgh, establishing flagship offices in prestigious Hanover Street,
following the acquisition of part of public sector consultancy practice PPS
Consulting. The purchase was one of four announced in January that brought a £7m
boost to the firm’s fee income.

In addition, Bentley Jennison acquired the financial services arm of
competitor RSM Robson Rhodes and Coach House Associates, a London corporate
finance boutique.

The acquisitions and new IT assurance business have helped Bentley Jennison
to broaden its service lines and its geographical spread. They have been matched
with central investment in IT, HR, new staff and training initiatives plus a
centralised marketing function.

The firm is committed to developing its culture in order to complete its
transformation from a disparate collection of offices to a cohesive national
firm. The practice now has nearly 1,000 staff, up from 750. Of these, 210 are
graduate trainees, and as well as professional accountancy training, the firm
has developed an initiative aimed at grooming staff so that they become business
advisers, rather than compliance specialists.

It all adds up to a practice in transition. The judges said: ‘This firm has
shown real professionalism and real dedication to improvement. Its application
and focus has left the other entrants well behind.’


‘Our philosophy is to be the best in our chosen markets. We are constantly
evaluating and improving what we are doing to achieve the strongest market
performance and the most effective and enjoyable working environment for our
people. We are not afraid to change and actively embrace new opportunities.’

Related reading