ETL buys Noone Casey as first of many Irish acquisitions

Written by admin

November 2, 2023

Article and photo taken from Business Post IE.

German multinational professional services firm has ‘quite strong growth plans’ to acquire ‘the best independent firm in each town or county’

Anthony Casey, accountant and co-founder of Noone Casey: ‘Within the ETL model there’s no pressure to change branding and you can continue completely independently.’ Picture: Bryan Meade

ETL Global, a German multinational professional services business, has bought Noone Casey, a Dublin-based accountancy practice, and plans to make 20 more acquisitions in Ireland over the next three years.

The value of the deal was not disclosed, but involves ETL taking a 51 per cent stake in the business, with the remaining stake staying with existing shareholders.

Noone Casey was set up in 1992 by Anthony Casey and Andrew Noone. Roseann Heavey is the company’s managing partner and the business has 23 staff. Its clients include Amárach Research, comedian Tommy Tiernan and Grammy award winners Rodrigo y Gabriela.

ETL is one of the largest providers of professional services to the SME sector in Europe and the fifth largest accountancy practice in Germany behind the traditional international big four.

“We had been talking with them for some time about working with some of their partners in Britain. The conversation developed where ETL wanted to come into Ireland,” Casey told the Business Post. “We will be the first ETL firm in Ireland but the target is at least 20 firms in Ireland over the next two to three years.”

Casey will take the role of master partner for ETL Ireland, with a focus on identifying businesses for acquisition.

“ETL wants the best independent firm in each town or county. There are quite strong growth plans,” he said. “We said yes because we saw a huge opportunity for Noone Casey. It improves international cooperation and improves opportunities for staff. It also allows us to create a succession plan. Two of our three partners are in their late 50s, we wanted to create a plan to go forward.”

Casey said the day-to-day operations of Noone Casey will continue to be controlled from the Dublin office, with ETL providing funding to enable succession planning.

“So many of the targeted acquisition firms will be like us, companies that were created from nothing. Within the ETL model there’s no pressure to change branding and you can continue completely independently,” he said. “That appealed to us as we can remain active in the sectors we were active in while remaining part of this organisation.”

ETL’s focus on the SME sector is the core motivation behind its plan to acquire businesses across Ireland.

“We’re looking at a structure where we create a model with numerous firms across the country, all 51 per cent owned by ETL, sharing services like HR and staff training,” Casey said. “We’re looking at adding up to five companies in each of the first two years and ten more in the third year.”