PKF Antares intends to staff a new Bermuda office
A Canadian tax and auditing firm plans to staff its new Bermuda office partly with locals, including Bermudian interns.
Erkin Atakhanov, the managing director of PKF Antares, had plans to meet with the Bermuda College to set up an internship programme.
“We hope to start with three or four interns,” said Mr Atakhanov, who is based in Calgary, Alberta.
He was also interested in recruiting Bermudian business students just graduating from Canadian universities who wished to return to the island to work.
“To add to that, PKF is a very integrated membership firm so we are looking for staff members who want to explore their career path in other offices of PKF such as in London, Canada or the United States,” Mr Atakhanov said.
The firm will also be looking at facilitating secondments.
“We have done it in Canada and it worked pretty well,” he said. “It helps the PKF brand to stand strong because the resource staffing is a big challenge in Canada and Bermuda.”
They will also be looking for more experienced staff locally to work on the audit and internal financial control side of things.
PKF Antares is the Canadian member of the global PKF network, which has approximately 80,000 staff in nearly 80 countries.
“PKF Canada is going to establish operations in Bermuda, so it will be integrated into the global PKF network to cover audit and consulting work that is needed for the insurance and asset management industry,” Mr Atakhanov said.
“PKF’s main hubs in London, New York, California and Australia will be supporting this new operation in terms of resources, technical support and helping us with this initiative.”
Their aim is to act as a substitute for the larger firms already dominating the market.
“We want to provide additional solutions to the insurance market,” he said.
While in Bermuda, PKR Antares gave a presentation to the Bermuda Monetary Authority.
“It went well,” Mr Atakhanov said. “We are in the final stages of setting up and getting a licence from Chartered Professional Accountants Bermuda, so we can kick-start the operation.”
They started the process in the autumn of 2022, and only have a few weeks left in the process.
Mr Atakhanov said the biggest challenge in setting up in Bermuda was that some of the procedures were not yet formalised.
“I understand it is a smaller economy and that is why most of the things are more informal,” he said. “In other, bigger economies, in order to get the licence to audit insurance and financial institutions, there is a special application you have to go through and it is very clear. But other than that, the rest of the process was way faster than I expected.”
He said at the same time they were setting up in Bermuda, they were also establishing a branch in Quebec, Canada.
“Establishing a branch in Bermuda was much easier than setting up in Quebec, and that was in the same country,” he said. “The rules in Quebec are way more complicated.”
Mr Atakhanov was impressed that the Bermuda Government was trying to keep its compliance and registration for new business welcoming to foreign entities.
The Royal Gazette spoke with Mr Atakhanov at the Bermuda Risk Summit 2023 at the Hamilton Princess & Beach Club earlier this month.
He said he was amazed by the number of people at the event.
“There are people here from diverse sectors of insurance, starting from capital markets, risk, sales and technology,” he said. “I have found all types of leaders from the insurance and risk industry participating.”
The company’s marketing material said it has “a particular expertise in auditing of companies from industries like Pharm, Oil & Gas Exploration, Oilfield services, Construction and Steel industries, Non-profit organisations (NPO), Real Estate, Universities, IT & professional services, and others”.
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