• Regional financial reform, high oil prices and economic diversification driving demand for audit and consulting services
  • A renewed appetite from foreign investors has seen demand for M&A advisory services rise
  • Consultancy services continue to grow in the region as ESG importance increases
  • Results announced as springboard for new global growth strategy  

RSM, the leading provider of assurance, tax and consulting services to middle market businesses, has today announced that its annual revenues in the Middle East and North Africa were up 17% on the previous year.  

These latest results are testament to the network’s continued growth in the region, which has seen its fee income across the Middle East and North Africa region leap by 23% in the last three years.  

The region demonstrated an increase in M&A activity as high oil prices and economic diversification continued to attract foreign direct investment (FDI) into the Middle East and North Africa, leading to 21% growth in RSM’s corporate finance and financial due diligence services. Alongside increasing FDI, rapid financial reforms have taken place across the region, and as businesses seek greater support with related regulatory tax and compliance issues, RSM’s audit services also saw 22% growth.  

2022 marked a heightened focus on ESG across the Middle East and North Africa as Egypt hosted COP27. The UAE and Oman committed to achieving net zero by 2050, while Saudi Arabia and Bahrain announced a net zero target for 2060. Egypt and Qatar also updated Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) - a climate action plan to cut emissions and adapt to climate impacts. Each Party to the Paris Agreement is required to establish an NDC and update it every five years. RSM’s consulting services grew by 10% as its experts supported businesses with these new commitments.

As private companies identified and mitigated fraud in the region, RSM saw a 118% increase in forensic accounting, while risk advisory services grew by 28% due to greater focus on corporate governance and technological innovation heightening cyber risk.

Bassam Dahman, Regional Leader for the Middle East and North Africa region at RSM, said: “Business confidence in the region is certainly rising as long-term growth becomes a focus in the COVID-recovery era. Whilst the pandemic put many investment plans on ice, signals this year indicate that investors are accelerating them once again. M&A and other corporate transactions are on the rise as a result, with an increasing focus on corporate governance, which is driving demand for forensic accounting and audit services. The region is rich in opportunity and brings great levels of diversity, so working collaboratively across borders is critical to success.”

2030 Global Strategy marks new era for RSM

Launched this month, RSM’s 2030 Global Strategy outlines a major multi-year growth and transformation programme that targets 100% growth in revenue by 2030. Through the Strategy, RSM will make increasing use of global, digital delivery models, enhanced insight generation and wider use of automation, big data, machine learning and artificial intelligence to support businesses through change.

RSM’s Strategy will further unite its firms under common international methodologies and structures that enable it to continue to drive service quality and promote responsible business practice, whilst constantly enhancing agility and innovation. With an ever-increasing global client base of growth-orientated, internationally-minded companies, RSM remains focused on ensuring they receive exceptional client-service, expert human insight powered by technology, and compelling, tailored solutions.

The strategy will see significant investment in talent and will transform RSM into a seamless global organisation, with teams, culture, governance and processes actively aligned across borders to empower both clients and RSM people to achieve their ambitions.

Bassam Dahman added: “Our rapid growth in the Middle East and North Africa is being replicated in many parts of the RSM network as we support businesses through unprecedented change. Our new strategy will enable us to continue our transformation into a data-driven, technologically enabled, international organisation.”

Jean Stephens, Chief Executive Officer of RSM International, said:

“We have entered a new and transformative business age, characterised by data-driven technological products and services, new approaches to working, and a clear focus on sustainability and purpose. Our growth has largely been driven by our ability to meet those challenges effectively. Our mantra as an organisation is to ‘Take Charge of Change’. By building deep, long-standing relationships and giving our clients and our people what they need to make confident decisions, we will help them to be more successful. As an organisation, our own accelerated transformation will ensure our growth continues at pace, instilling within all of our clients and colleagues a fundamental confidence to thrive.”