Joint venture Berenschot and Mazars opens offices in South Africa

2 October 2014

On 1 October the office of Mazars Berenschot Africa will be opened in Cape Town. The opening will take place in the presence of members of the boards of various South African companies, government organisations and representatives of the Dutch Embassy. Subsequently, the office in Johannesburg will be opened on 2 October. The opening of the offices follows shortly after the signing of a joint venture agreement between the South African branch of accounting firm Mazars and the Dutch organisation consulting firm Berenschot.

The signing of the joint venture agreement took place in July 2014 during a trade mission to South Africa led by Minister Plouman (Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation). Mazars Berenschot Africa will provide organisation consultancy services to public and private organisations in South Africa. ‘The joint venture in South Africa is part of a trend,’ says Luc Steenhorst, Director of Berenschot International: ‘More and more European companies are asking us to help them develop business and projects in Africa.’ Berenschot clearly notices that companies are increasingly looking for opportunities in Africa. Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa particularly are receiving attention.

The Netherlands is an important trading partner of South Africa, and Dutch businesses are well represented there. South Africa is the largest trading partner of the Netherlands in Africa. From the first quarter of 1993 to the second quarter of 2008, the country experienced 62 quarters of uninterrupted economic growth. At the end of 2008, however, the global economic crisis also hit South Africa. From 5.4% in 2006 and 5.1% in 2007, growth declined to 3.1% in 2008.

When the consequences of the crisis in the third and fourth quarters of 2008 were clearly felt, GDP fell and, for the first time in many years, the economy slipped into a recession. The fall in GDP lasted until the first and second quarters of 2009. Growth quickly resumed, however, albeit at a lower level than before (mainly due to South Africa’s persistently high dependence on European exports). Growth in 2010 amounted to 2.9%, in 2011 to 3.1% and in 2012 to 2.5%. The prospects for 2013 and the expectation for 2014 are somewhat lower: respectively 1.9% and 2.0%.

Berenschot is an independent organisation consulting firm with 350 employees worldwide. The firm was established in 1938 and has its head office in Utrecht. Berenschot has various branches abroad. The South African branch is the second on the African continent. Previously, Berenschot was established in Ghana in West Africa.

Mazars specialises in audit, accountancy, tax services and consultancy. The head office of Mazars is located in France. The company operates in 72 countries with 250 branches and has almost 14,000 employees worldwide. Mazars is represented in South Africa by 12 branches.

Mazars Berenschot Africa is located in Johannesburg and Cape Town. The organisation consultancy firm is particularly active in the water, energy, transport and health care sectors. The management team consists of Anoop Ninan and Sanjay Ranchhoojee from Mazars Africa and Luc Steenhorst and Frank Burgers from Berenschot.

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