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DFK News

09 06 2021

Alfa Accountants and Advisors acquires Mazars’ agro practice

As of 1 September 2021, Alfa Accountants and Advisors are taking over Mazars’ agro portfolio at the Enschede, Winterswijk and Wolvega sites. Around 220 clients and 10 specialist consultants are transferring to Alfa. Sector knowledge and expertise are being combined to offer businesses a wider array of services. In addition, it complements the growth envisaged by the organisation.  

Increasing complexity in the area of accountancy and laws and regulations demand increasingly broader sector knowledge and expertise. Mazars therefore decided to transfer the Enschede, Winterswijk and Wolvega agro practices to an organisation that can offer that added value, continuity and quality in this specific sector and thus improve the perspective for clients and specialist employees in the sector.

Expansion of practice and team 
Alfa has 35 offices and works for over 17,000 businesses in the Netherlands. The organisation is active locally in Twente and Salland with offices in Nijverdal and Hardenberg. Inez Schutten, Chair of the board of directors, is pleased with the expansion: “The acquisition means significant expansion of our agro practice in the region. In addition, our team is expanding with ten agricultural consultants. The labour market is very tight at present, so we are delighted to welcome these new colleagues. A wonderful addition to our existing team.”  

Familiar faces will remain 
The contract between Mazars and Alfa has meanwhile been signed. Board members Inez Schutten and Wim Kappers from Alfa in Twente and Salland have met the new colleagues personally and are delighted about the expansion of the organisation. Inez Schutten: “Everything will be arranged in the coming period in order to be able to start officially on 1 September 2021. We look forward to successful collaboration and hope for a great deal of job satisfaction.” Clients will retain their regular familiar points of contact because the agricultural consultants from Mazars are also transferring to Alfa. The new employees are being inducted at the Nijverdal office. They will also work from other Alfa offices at a later stage.  

Growth of the Alfa organisation
Because of the consolidation of expertise and contacts, the acquisition complements the growth envisaged by Alfa. Arnoud Bosch, Alfa board member: “This acquisition strengthens our position in Twente and Salland. It is a strategic pillar in an economically strong region and a wonderful addition to our regional services.” In recent years, the organisation has acquired several portfolios from, amongst others, Novel Groep Accountants en Adviseurs, EQUITY, Visser Toornstra Van der Meulen Accountants (VTM Accountants) and De Jongh Accountants.  

01 06 2021

Wilson Wright continues to grow tax team with appointment of tax disputes partner

Wilson Wright, the City-based accountancy, tax and business advisory firm, has continued to grow its tax team with the appointment of a tax disputes partner.

Jessica McLellan joins the firm in June to establish and grow its tax risk and dispute resolution division.

Her appointment increases the firm’s ability to assist clients facing protracted or serious enquiries from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC), or who have legacy schemes to settle or potential disclosures to make.

Jessica has more than 15 years’ experience as a tax disputes resolution specialist, including more than a decade at a big four firm and a period as a Policy Adviser at HMRC, giving her a deep insight into the revenue’s approach to litigation and dispute resolution.

She joins Wilson Wright at a time when HMRC has more powers than ever before to instigate tax investigations, while political pressure and limited resources are leading it increasingly to pursue ostensibly easy targets such as owner-managed businesses.

HMRC investigations can be highly intrusive and disruptive for individuals, families and businesses alike. If they are not handled effectively, they can also be costly and inflict significant reputational damage.

The challenge of applying complex tax legislation to complex financial structures and transactions means that tax disputes can often turn on highly technical questions of interpretation, meaning experienced professional advice is vital.

Jessica is experienced in managing relationships with HMRC and mitigating the risks of complex transactions and disclosures.

She is also a qualified Mediator (CEDR), enabling her to assist clients entering into Alternative Dispute Resolution with HMRC.

Jessica said: “Most people who find themselves in the midst of a tax dispute never expected to be there, whether because their advisers have interpreted their liability differently from HMRC, they have made an inadvertent error or have received bad advice.  Sometimes their tax affairs are just complex or cross-jurisdictional and have not been explained in the right way to HMRC.

“My approach is to bring technical expertise within practical strategic advice considering the wider context of disputed matters for families, their business interests and other commercial factors.

“With HMRC increasingly seeking to pursue the owner-managed businesses it perceives as being more likely to make mistakes, I am delighted to be joining Wilson Wright to launch this new service to complement the firm’s already strong advisory and compliance services.”

Craig Nicholson, Senior Tax Partner at Wilson Wright, added: “Tax disputes are an increasing risk and have potentially severe consequences if they are not handled effectively.

“Jessica brings an impressive track record of assisting her clients with tax disputes to bring about the best possible outcomes.

“Her appointment is a natural progression for the department and the firm as we look to offer our clients a comprehensive set of specialist advisory services.”

28 05 2021

DFK member Firm make Senior Promotion

A tax specialist who has played an integral role in driving his firm’s engagement within the DFK network has been promoted.

Mark Kearsley, of Liverpool-based DSG Chartered Accountants, has been promoted to Tax Partner.

With over a decade’s experience working at DSG, Mark has worked closely with the firm’s larger corporate clients and owner-managed businesses, providing a range of tax advisory services.

He oversees the firm’s corporate tax advisory offering, including R&D tax advisory work and also advises on international aspects of corporate tax for both inbound and outbound international clients.

Mark has been a longstanding attendee of DFK UK&I’s Young Professionals Conferences since 2014 and has also participated in a number of annual UK&I and EMEA Conferences, over the last five years.

He is a member of the DFK UK&I Tax Group and also took part in the first ever six-week ‘Route to Partner’ training programme earlier this year, which consisted of weekly webinars looking at the core skills required to become an effective leader.

Mark said: “While DSG has given me the platform to develop both as a tax professional and a business adviser, DFK has played an invaluable role in developing my soft skills, such as leadership and effective communication.

“Attending the Young Professionals Conferences over the years has really supported me as I’ve progressed through my career.

“The early conferences coincided with me stepping up to a management role which enabled me to focus on my personal development and strengthening my soft skills.

“Since 2017 I have attended a number of DFK UK and Ireland Annual Conferences as well as two EMEA Conferences which has enhanced DSG’s presence within DFK International and our profile within the association.

“The recent DFK Route to Partner programme was very well timed, just ahead of my promotion, and this gave me the space to reflect on the last couple of years as a tax director, and really got me thinking longer term as I transition to Partner.

“The programme will certainly stand me in good stead as I continue developing the tax team, building relationships with clients and professionals across various sectors and contributing to the future growth of the business.”

Andrew Moss, Corporate Partner at DSG, said: “We were delighted to announce Mark’s promotion to partner recently. Mark has been a key member of the DSG team and will continue to be so in his new role.   

“At DSG we strive to encourage and mentor our team. The DFK association and conferences have played a huge part in Mark’s development, not only in the coaching and training but also in helping to develop valuable relationships with fellow members.”


Caroline Cassidy, executive officer of DFK UK&I and EMEA, added: “Mark thoroughly deserves this promotion. His elevation to partner is a testament of his commitment to DSG, and to DFK. His involvement in DFK over the years has been incredible.

“To observe him grow from young professional, to manager, right up to partner has been an honour and something that many of our young professionals across the association can aspire to.”

Peter Winter, Chairman of DFK UK & Ireland, concluded: “Mark’s promotion to Tax Partner at DSG is a great and well-deserved milestone in his career.

“I have enjoyed watching Mark’s career develop over the years; he has raised his profile within the DFK association by attending many of our conferences and he has embraced all the support and training opportunities available to him, both at DSG and DFK.”


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