Russell Bedford enters into Central Asian market
Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) --
London-based accounting group Russell Bedford International has taken further steps to expand into former Soviet Union countries by taking on firms in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.
The Kazakh firm, Business Consulting, is an independent audit practice, established in 2007 in Almaty, the largest city and commercial capital.
Business Consulting is licensed as an audit practice by the Ministry of Finance, it is a member of the Chamber of Auditors, and it is one of the few audit organisations approved by the local regulatory agency to audit financial institutions. Whilst its main focus is on financial auditing, the firm’s other services include tax consulting and compilation of financial statements to IFRS. Asset appraisal and valuation services are provided via another group company.
The client base covers a wide range of business sectors including oil and gas, construction, transportation and manufacturing.
The firm has four partners: Sholpanay Kudaibergenova, Margarita Bassabikova, Gaukhar Tuimebay and Zynaida Druzhinina.
In addition to its main office in Almaty, Business Consulting has a representative office in Aktau on the Caspian Sea.
The Uzbek firm, Marikon Audit, is an independent audit and tax consulting practice, established in 2000 in the capital Tashkent.
Marikon Audit is one of around 50 firms in the country that are licensed as audit practices, and one of fewer than 30 that are qualified to audit organisations with a state shareholding of greater than 51%. Audit clients include foreign-owned entities and joint ventures, together with various international development organisations.
According to a league table of audit firms published in 2005 by the Chamber of Auditors, Marikon Audit is ranked third in the market.
The firm is run by Natalia Kondratova, her daughter Marina and her son Nikolai. In total it has almost 40 personnel, including eight certified auditors. The firm has three offices, two in Tashkent and one in Kokand.
The appointment of firms in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan reflects a recent initiative by Russell Bedford International to develop a regional network of accounting and audit firms throughout Central Asia. Suitably qualified firms are currently being sought in Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Mongolia.