PracticePeople In PracticeQ&A: How MacIntyre Hudson’s association works

Q&A: How MacIntyre Hudson's association works

The newly-created association, MHA, brings together six UK firms. But what does that really mean in practice?

What is MHA? MHA is an association of six accounting firms: MacIntyre Hudson, which led the project; along with Broomfield & Alexander; Carpenter Box; Henderson Loggie; Larking Gowen; and Moore and Smalley.

So are the six firms that form MHA ‘merged’? No. The association is relatively loose at the moment. Each firm has paid into a pot to form a limited company that will act as MHA’s secretariat. Mike Brown (pictured) from MacIntyre Hudson will serve as MHA’s chairman, and its board will comprise a representative from each member firm. But one firm hasn’t bought up another.

Are the firms now called MHA? Yes, and no. The association allows them to retain their own branding. It is expected that some will eventually adopt an MHA prefix to their name.

If they are not merged then why bother? The association allows them to work together where a particular firm lacks expertise needed for a client. For example, Scottish-based Henderson Loggie has a strong public sector background. It might help the other firms to win clients if the Audit Commission’s work is broken up.

A formal merger creates risk around the upheaval of centralising activities and potential job losses – as well as battles for control of the merged entity. Looser ties allow the firms to ‘get to know each other’.

What are MHA member firms’ plans for the future? There is always the option, if the firms work together well, to begin formalising their relationship. Current early options include introducing common procurement procedures, such as around staff training.

How can the firms be members of MHA and Morison? MHA is an association of six UK firms. Morison is an international network of which Macintyre Hudson is a member. MHA’s membership of Morison gives the six firms scope for international client referrals and sharing of knowledge.

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