Hards Pearson LLP merges with Grant Thornton LLP

Simcoe County businesses to benefit from merger

TORONTO, Jan. 11 /CNW/ - National accounting and advisory firm Grant Thornton LLP announced today that as of January 1, 2010, the firm has merged with the Barrie based accounting and advisory firm Hards Pearson LLP.

"This is clearly one of those win-win situations you hope for," states Phil Noble, Executive Partner and Chief Executive Officer, Grant Thornton LLP. "Hards Pearson has a long and outstanding reputation in the Barrie area, and this merger will help fulfill a strategic need of ours to have a stronger presence to serve our clients in Simcoe County and the surrounding area." Grant Thornton has offices across Canada, including Barrie and Orillia as well as throughout Ontario.

Hards Pearson LLP has served Barrie area businesses for over 55 years, and enjoys a strong reputation for exceptional client service in the community. The firm sought out a larger firm in order to bring a greater range of services to their clients. "We've long enjoyed providing personalized accounting and advisory services to our clients. With Canadian businesses facing new challenges-HST as a current example-we felt that merging our resources with those of a like-minded, larger national firm would give our clients access to a broader range of services while maintaining our ties to the community. The Grant Thornton culture and market focus is very closely aligned with our own, and we're excited about what this will mean for our clients," said Tom Hards, Managing Partner, Hards Pearson.

Mr. Noble adds that the two firms approach client service in a similar manner and expects the transition for their own people, the Hards Pearson team, and all clients to be seamless.

The merged firm will now operate as Grant Thornton LLP.

Notes to editors:

About Grant Thornton LLP

Grant Thornton LLP is a leading Canadian accounting and advisory firm providing audit, tax and advisory services to private and public organizations. Together with the Quebec firm Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton LLP, Grant Thornton has more than 3,100 people in offices across Canada. Grant Thornton LLP is a Canadian member of Grant Thornton International Ltd, whose member and correspondent firms operate in over 100 countries worldwide. In Ontario, Grant Thornton LLP has offices in Barrie, Hamilton, London, Markham, Mississauga, New Liskeard, North Bay, Orillia, Port Colborne, Sault Ste. Marie, Thunder Bay and Toronto.

SOURCE Grant Thornton LLP

For further information: For further information: Andrea Mascarenhas, T (416) 360-5065, F (416) 360-4944

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