North-east accountancy firm beefs up its senior team

Accountants in Inverurie, Fraserburgh and Inverness are celebrating promotions at Aberdeen-based Johnston Carmichael (JC).

Scotland’s largest independent firm of chartered accountants and business advisers announced yesterday it had five extra partners and two new directors.

Chief executive Sandy Manson said the new roles for seven of JC’s team across six of its 11 offices around Scotland were aimed at maintaining a “strong, diverse leadership team”.

The new partners – taking the total to 57 – include Rosalind Catto and Scott Jeffrey in Inverness, who have been with the firm since 2004 and 2005 respectively.

Ms Catto is an expert in tax compliance and heads up JC’s Moray business solutions team of 16, based in both Inverness and Elgin.

Mr Jeffrey, who works in both the Inverness and Elgin offices, is one of the firm’s not-for-profit specialists.

The three other new partners are Irvine Spowart, Ryan Diplexcito and Gavin Young who are based in Edinburgh, Perth and Glasgow respectively.

Iain Castles in the Fraserburgh office and Emma Waterman, based in Inverurie, are JC’s two newest directors.

Mr Castles – a former Royal Mail employee turned chartered accountant – has been with JC since 2012 and looks after most of its fishing industry clients.

Ms Waterman is currently a senior client relationship manager, having been with the firm since last June.

All seven newly promoted staff will take up their new roles at the start of next month.

Mr Manson said: “We place great emphasis on developing talent from within to maintain a strong, diverse leadership team.

“I am confident that our new partners and directors will play a major part in the success of our business as we continue to expand our range of services to meet the needs of our clients”

JC has its origins in a partnership formed by Bill Johnston and John Carmichael at Nairn in 1936.

From humble beginnings in rural Moray, it has mushroomed into a business employing nearly 700 staff and partners across offices in Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Elgin, Forfar, Fraserburgh, Glasgow, Huntly, Inverness, Inverurie, Perth and Stirling.

Mr Manson, 55, has been at the helm since June 2007, when he took over the hotseat from Patrick Machray.

The firm broke through the £40million turnover mark for the first time during its 80th year, its last published accounts showed.

It attributed the rise in turnover – up 8% to £40.8million – as well as a 5% jump in pre-tax profits to £11.8million during the year to the end of May 2016 to its ability to diversify in challenging markets.

JC also benefits from being part of PKF International, a global network of accountancy firms operating from more than 400 offices in 150 countries.