South Africa: ENS Takes Top Honours In International Tax Awards
Last Updated: 29 May 2013

ENS (Edward Nathan Sonnenbergs), Africa's largest law firm, has taken top honours at the prestigious European Tax Awards hosted by International Tax Review (ITR) at the Dorchester Hotel in London.

The 60-strong tax team was named both South African Tax Firm of the Year and South African Transfer Pricing Firm of the Year at the esteemed award ceremony which was attended by leading tax executives and advisors from around the world.  This is the second year in a row that ENS has won in the Transfer Pricing category and the first time that a South African law firm has taken the prestigious title for Tax Firm of the Year.

Leading accounting, legal and tax firms from 26 European jurisdictions, plus South Africa, were nominated for the awards. In order to determine winners, ITR considered submissions made by the participating firms and ITR's team of journalists undertook detailed research from a variety of sources, including a poll of international tax executives. Awards were given for work performed during the previous 12-month period and were judged according to size, innovation in terms of the solution offered and the overall complexity of the mandate.  Other finalists included Deloitte, Ernst and Young, DLA Piper (Cliffe Decker Hofmeyr) and Webber Wentzel.

"We are humbled and proud of the fact that ENS has won these esteemed awards as they celebrate our specialised, multi-disciplined approach. These awards have earned their reputation as the industry standard for tax expertise globally and the fact that ENS, an African law firm, was victorious against global players such as Deloitte and Ernst and Young, is a considerable achievement for the firm and for all of us, as Africans," said Peter Dachs, joint head of the Tax Department.

"ENS's goal is to provide high quality, seamless legal, tax, intellectual property and forensics advice to clients throughout Africa.  The European Tax awards, which are widely respected as a pinnacle of achievement, recognise excellence in client service, innovation and world-class tax advice. We are grateful to ITR for once again recognizing ENS's world-class capabilities and commitment to helping clients effectively address their most important challenges in a rapidly changing global tax environment," says Bernard du Plessis, joint head of the Tax Department.

Du Plessis adds that size, although not conclusive, indicates what the tax team is capable of taking on. "Innovation measures the ability of the firm to demonstrate solutions that differ from the norm; and complexity assesses whether or not issues out of the ordinary were addressed and if the advisor showed ingenuity. In order to place first, a firm must show excellence in each category."

Dachs adds that the International Tax review poll is voted for by readers of International Tax Review, which includes tax directors and CFOs at large multinational companies, and is highly regarded internationally.

 "As a firm, we strive to develop the highest level of experience and range of services. We are very proud of these achievements as they recognise our understanding of in-country tax and regulatory structuring compliance in all of Africa's jurisdictions and our ability to offer an integrated service, wherein clients receive the best possible tax and legal advice," concludes du Plessis.

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