Grant Thornton LLP and BDO Dunwoody LLP announced today that their respective boards have agreed to enter into merger discussions. The two companies are both national accounting and advisory firms with offices across Canada.

Preliminary discussions between Grant Thornton and BDO Dunwoody have indicated potential opportunity for both organizations including their respective clients, employees and partners.

Over the next several months, representatives from both organizations will engage in a due diligence process to further assess the merits of a combined organization. Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton (RCGT), the Quebec-based firm of Grant Thornton in Canada, is also participating in these discussions in connection with its joint presence with BDO Dunwoody in Montreal and the Ottawa area.

Both firms are highly successful today operating as independent entities. Together with Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton, Grant Thornton in Canada has 370 partners and 2900 employees working in 99 offices across Canada, and is the Canadian member of Grant Thornton International.

BDO Dunwoody has over 315 partners and 1900 employees in 95 offices across Canada, and is the Canadian member firm of the BDO International network.

According to Alex MacBeath, CEO of Grant Thornton, “A merger would represent a marriage of opportunity. A combined firm would reflect a merger of two strong firms.”

Gilles Chaput, CEO of BDO Dunwoody, comments that, “A combined firm would have enhanced strength, capacity, depth, and market credibility to compete in marketplaces across Canada, while at the same time maintaining a strong position in the local communities throughout Canada.”

By agreeing to this announcement, the parties have signaled their belief that there is sufficient opportunity to warrant further discussions.