MSI Global Alliance: how are members selected?

Businesses looking to set up in another jurisdiction or country first and foremost want to know that the law firm or accounting firm they are working with has the skills and capabilities to act fast and effectively on their behalf – with strong local knowledge and all the contacts necessary to ease a path into the new market. MSI Global Alliance exists to make this process as seamless as possible for clients. Increasingly our local member firms are being contacted directly by businesses from all over the world looking to invest or set up a business entity in Australia and New Zealand.

For those businesses, it begs the question: how are MSI Global Alliance member firms selected and what is the process by which admission is gained?

What is the process by which admission into MSI Global Alliance is gained?

MSI Global Alliance has a very stringent methodology for the selection and subsequent admission of member firms into its worldwide professional association. Firstly, any firm that is looking to join MSI Global Alliance must be independent and must be vouched for by other local members. Secondly, having applied for membership, the firm concerned will receive a visit from either the MSI CEO or Chairman (who are based in London) to review the firm’s application, spend time in the offices and meet the partners in the firm. This is a critical element of the potential membership process. Thereafter, if the broader conditions of membership are met which include the coverage of key legal and accounting or audit services, the CEO will put forward the prosective member firm to the MSI Global Alliance Limited board of directors, for a decision on membership. The eight member board will consider and debate the merits of the proposed member and, if successful the firm will be admitted to the association.

Background to MSI Global Alliance

By way of background, MSI Global Alliance was founded in 1990 in London and the board is made up of three UK accountants, three German lawyers (founding members) in addition to the CEO (Tim Wilson) and Chairman (James Mendelssohn). Every membership application must be considered at a full meeting of the board and a checklist – in addition to the location visit – must be satisfied before a new member is admitted.

For clients this breeds confidence – and from our perspective as the Australia / New Zealand membership grouping it ensures we are able to demonstrate the high standrds of membership selection and the process of admission.

Typical lawfirm members in Australia (Aitken Partners in Melbourne) and New Zealand (Keegan Alexander in Auckland) and accounting firm members in the two countries (McKinley Plowman in Perth and Mackay Bailey in Christchurch) provide great case studies into the quality of each firm selected. There are currently 14 member firms across the two countries.

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