Under the terms of the deal, the firms will merge their audit, legal, tax and corporate finance practices. It does not, however, include the business consulting or executive temporary management arms.
At first, E&Y and Andersen will work independently, but as part of the E&Y network while they come up with the best way to put the merger into place.
E&Y said the merger would enable the firms to better serve clients as well as give them an opportunity to ‘reaffirm their independence and moral duty of quality through a renewed organisation.’
According to French accounting magazine la Profession comptable, PricewaterhouseCoopers held the number one place in the 2001 French accountancy league table, with KPMG coming in second.
But with the merger, Ernst & Young has burst forth from fourth place to first in France in terms of audit work.
In 2001, the E&Y France had an annual fee income of ? ¬373.5m (£228.9m), whilst Andersen’s fee income was ? ¬416m (£254.9m).
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