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BDO Bahrain eyes corporate finance boost

Manama, July 17, 2010

BDO Bahrain, a leading accounting and auditing and management consultancy services provider, is looking to become a major player in corporate finance as the region comes out of the global economic downturn, said a top official.

The firm recently headhunted a leading UK specialist in the field, Peter Petyt, who has been made partner in charge of corporate finance and management from the UK, and is already making strong inroads into a market in which it was probably perceived as not as strong as it could be in the past, said a report in our sister publication, the Gulf Daily News.

"This is not the easiest time for corporate finance even in Bahrain which was not immune to the global downturn," said Petyt. "But this is a time when there are opportunities to capitalise on.

"I am fairly flexible about how we move ahead and am looking at corporate restructuring and turnaround opportunities and a market that includes both small to medium-sized businesses as well as large companies,” he added.

"BDO Bahrain has strength in consultancy but has probably not developed the corporate finance side of the business as strongly as it could have. The key to good corporate finance is to make something out of something.”

"Consultancy is about seeing how things can be taken forward. I am fairly bullish about the UK at the moment where corporate and personal debt are a problem and it will take some time to get over that,” Petyt continued.

"By 2008, the UK market for corporate finance had become problematic. The last two years in the UK were a tough time. There was no lack of opportunities but executing was a problem because banks were not prepared to lend.

"Here small to medium-sized enterprises that have expansion plans can go to the Bahrain Development Bank for support and we can help them put together the programme to get them that assistance. I wish there was a development bank in the UK like that,” Petyt noted.

"The region is looking at interesting multi-million-dollar developments and that is where corporate finance can play an important role. Along with BDO, Australia and Stirling University Institute of Aquaculture, we are looking to develop a strategic report on the Saudi Arabian fishing industry to see how it can be developed," Petyt said.

"We are also involved in looking to raise development capital for a number of larger companies including a telecom company looking to come to the Middle East that needs capital. We are looking at a management buyout of one institution here and are also involved in raising capital for companies in the field of cable, restaurants and packaging.”

"Going forward, we will see the need for restructuring of private equity companies who have to shore up balance sheets and find strategic opportunities," he added.

"Bahrain is particularly interesting because it is in a hub position and people from across the region like doing business here because it is a free economy and as a banking centre has a lot of financial expertise. It is a good place to access the Middle East as a whole," he explained.

"There are a lot of opportunities both in Bahrain and the region and BDO Bahrain is a an established firm with a compelling high level practice and contacts. They are well connected. There is no door they can't open.”

"Perhaps what they lacked was someone who can go through the door and focus on developing corporate finance, and that is what we now intend to do,” Petyt concluded. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Bahrain | consultancy | BDO | corporate finance | Petyt |

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