One of Canada’s largest national accounting and business consulting firms just got even larger. MNP LLP, headquartered in Calgary with 65 offices and 4,000 team members across Canada, merged with Halifax-based WBLI LLP, effective January 1, 2017. The merger provides benefits to both parties with WBLI seeking to expand its breadth of specialty services and MNP seeking to build on its presence in Atlantic Canada.
“This merger is strategic and historic for MNP as we will now provide all of our services from coast to coast,” says Daryl Ritchie, chairman of the board of MNP. “MNP’s strategic plan for growth and our entrepreneurial spirit have always been the driving force behind our success and this merger builds on our plans for expansion in Atlantic Canada. With WBLI on board, we can now truly call Atlantic Canada home.”
The merger comes on the heels of MNP’s acquisition of PwC’s Atlantic Canada consumer insolvency practice and its 31 offices in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, P.E.I. and Newfoundland in March 2016. “This acquisition expanded the MNP brand into the Atlantic Canada marketplace, adding to the firm’s insolvency service line which has grown substantially since then,” says Jason Tuffs, CEO at MNP. “But MNP was still seeking an established, respected firm to join forces with to establish and grow its accounting, tax and consulting presence in the region.” WBLI was exactly that firm.
Started in Atlantic Canada in 1976, WBLI is the region’s largest independent and full-service firm of chartered professional accountants, delivering a full range of accounting, tax and business advisory services. Clients come from various sectors including private enterprise, professionals, fishing, mining, real estate and construction.
“In addition to sharing common values and client-centred approach, MNP understands all of the specialized markets and sectors in which our clients operate and more,” says Kirk Higgins, managing partner, WBLI. “MNP also provides us with a large national presence and access to hundreds of MNP experts and specialists in service lines that we do not currently offer.” In particular, Higgins says joining MNP will enhance WBLI’s insolvency division, WBLI Incorporated. He also predicts MNP’s international tax practice will be of further benefit to the Atlantic Canada firm.
In addition to MNP’s almost 60-year history, WBLI was attracted by MNP’s status as one of the 50 Best Employers in Canada by AON Hewitt for eight consecutive years. “MNP is more than just a large national accounting firm with a long history,” says Higgins. “Knowing their team members value the firm and continue to feel valued themselves brings us a lot of confidence we are joining the right firm.”
WBLI partners and staff will remain in their current locations, which are being rebranded as MNP.