Mazars sets up financial services advisory practice in Africa

01 November 2019 2 min. read
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Accounting and advisory firm Mazars is looking to edge into South Africa’s burgeoning financial services sector, through the establishment of Mazars Financial Services Africa. The new entity will offer support in the workforce domain, led by executives Riaan Eksteen and George Ellis.

Mazars has a considerable presence across South Africa, with offices across eleven locations in the country, including major financial centres of Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Pretoria, among others. Over the years, the accounting and professional services firm has gradually been expanding its suite of offerings in South Africa.

In 2014, the firm ventured into the management consulting domain through a partnership with Dutch management consultancy Berenschot. The two firms opened a joint venture practice in Johannesburg and Cape Town. Mazars will now move into the financial services domain.

Financial services is among the most vibrant sectors in the South African market at present. Recent reports have suggested that above all else, the sector is suffering from talent development issues, as a significant portion of the workforce lacks the necessary digital skills to adapt to the current environment.

Mazars sets up financial services advisory practice in Africa

There is a skill gap in South Africa’s financial services sector, and Mazars is looking to cover it through its advisory services. Leading the charge will be Riaan Eksteen and George Ellis, both of whom join from Big Four accounting and advisory firm Deloitte South Africa.

Eksteen was previously a partner at Deloitte with more than two decades of experience at the firm, while Ellis joins from the Deloitte South Africa’s Analytics division. Both executives have a number of years’ experience in the financial services sector. Aroop Ninan, who is the CEO at Mazars, expressed his confidence in the new division.

“Business has progressed from long-range planning and static workforce requirements to quick implementation of projects and a dynamic, agile workforce. This is particularly true for South African financial services companies who need to manage digital disruption,” said Ninan.

“Skills shortages and the war for talent are very real and many companies in the financial sector are finding it difficult to hire the right professionals when and where they need them,” he added.