Accounting Firms

Saffery Champness acquires Grant Thornton Ireland’s media practice

Saffery Champness has acquired Grant Thornton Ireland’s Media and Entertainment Practice, based in Dublin.

Under the deal, the team of 11 people, headed up by John Gleeson, will join Saffery Champness with effect from 8 April and will operate from Saffery Champness’ new Irish office located at 99 St Stephen’s Green in central Dublin.

Gleeson has over 20 years’ commercial experience in providing tax advice and advisory services, with a particular focus on the media and entertainment sector in Ireland and abroad. He and his team have worked on TV shows such as Doc McStuffins, Ripper Street, Vikings, Nightflyers and Game of Thrones, and films such as Room, The Breadwinner, Star Wars Episode VIII – The Last Jedi and The Rhythm Section.

The team will continue to focus on advising domestic and international clients on film and TV financing, specialising in Ireland’s Section 481 film and TV tax incentive.

Saffery Champness’ existing UK Film and TV team already comprises 48 people, including seven partners. It has worked on recent high-profile film projects such as Star Wars – The Force Awakens, Mama Mia – Here We Go Again and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. Its more recent TV projects have included Poldark, Game of Thrones, Bodyguard and Sex Education.

Matthew Burton, managing partner of Saffery Champness, said: “Film and television is a core chosen market for us as a business and an area where we boast significant strength and depth of expertise. I am certain that John and his team will prove a real asset to the firm, enhancing our capabilities and range of client services as well as furthering our international reach.

“Taken together, we believe our offering in the film and TV sector across the UK and Ireland makes us the go-to advisers to US producers seeking to create films and television shows in Europe, as well as to domestic producers working in both jurisdictions.”

John Gleeson added: “I speak for the whole team when I say that we are very excited about joining Saffery Champness. We share the same core values and commitment to providing our clients with the very best advice and highest levels of service. The complementary expertise and knowledge of the two film and TV teams in the UK and Ireland make us a natural fit and give us [an] even greater resource to serve an even wider range of clients.”

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