Previous mergers had boosted the growth of core services such as audit and accounting, but 2016 saw the revival of a service area that had previously been under-emphasised: the forgotten service that was internal auditing. Internal audits had been carried out for clients from time to time since the beginning of the new century, but it was a long way off constituting targeted service development.

In 2005, Rimess MRI moved to Admiral House on Ahtri Street in Tallinn. This new, larger office was bought, not rented.

This situation changed on 15 February 2016 when the company, which had been renamed Grant Thornton Baltic in the meantime, acquired Interna OÜ, the only internal audit company in Estonia, which was known as Nõmmiste explains: “We felt there was a demand for internal audit services on the market and among our clients, and it was a growing area. Training in this area, which was successfully organised by Interna, was definitely important as well. When we analysed our service portfolio, we found that Interna’s services fit very well with our existing ones and so we decided to go ahead with the merger.”

As a result, three internal auditors headed up by Siiri Antsmäe, the director of Interna, joined Grant Thornton Baltic.

The team of Interna OÜ joined Grant Thornton Baltic in 2016. Pictured (from left): Internal Auditor and Head of Business Risk Services Siiri Antsmäe (now Viil), internal auditors Krisi Pungas and Marin Jakobson (now Korela) with Mati Nõmmiste at the company’s Christmas party.

Life has shown that Nõmmiste’s hunch that the need for internal audits and other business risk services would grow was right. Examples include the extremely strict and complex personal data protection regime and the anti- money laundering and anti-terrorism requirements imposed on companies, which are giving Grant Thornton Baltic’s five-person risk management team more work all the time.

All in all, these mergers and acquisitions have contributed to Grant Thornton Baltic’s decades-old goal of ensuring steady and sustainable growth through the addition of new services, experienced and competent staff and satisfied clients.