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French accounting firm Mazars takes on 'Big Four' with North American deal

French accounting firm Mazars takes on 'Big Four' with North American deal
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PARIS (Reuters) – French accounting group Mazars is forming an alliance with five smaller firms in North America aiming to take market share from the “Big Four”, its CEO said in an interview.

Mazars’s move, which will almost double its size, is an attempt to challenge market leading position of the four large international accounting firms EY, Deloitte, PwC and KPMG.

“Our ambition is to become a European champion with an international scope,” Mazars’s CEO Herve Helias told Reuters on Thursday. “When they call me the fifth big, I like it.”

Mazars’s expansion comes as pressure is mounting, most notably in Britain, to break up the big accounting groups.

Helias said Mazars has signed a partnership with four local accounting firms in the United States and one in Canada to provide services under the brand Mazars in these countries to its existing customers.

Mazars said it would not take any stake in the firms, which are BKD, Dixon Hughes Goodman, Moss Adams, Plante Moran in the United States and MNP in Canada.

Mazars provides both audit and consultancy services.

(Reporting by Inti Landauro; Editing by Leigh Thomas and Jane Merriman)

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