New York (Dec. 16, 2003) — Big Four firm Ernst & Young and Mitchell & Titus, the nation’s largest minority-owned CPA firm, have forged an alliance to work together on client engagements, staff training, marketing, and recruiting and diversity efforts.

The two New York-based firms will go to the market together to pursue engagements in the telecom, real estate, nonprofit and government arenas, according to senior partner Laurence Charney, a member of E&Y’s Metro New York-area management team, who will oversee the alliance for Ernst & Young.

Charney noted that the firms have been doing work together in those areas for years, with Mitchell & Titus doing the compliance audit work on engagements where E&Y provided other services.

"Mitchell & Titus has a long, very credible history with respect to the quality they provide in the government, nonprofit, real estate and telecom industries," he said. "They have a No. 1 reputation, not only as far as their industry expertise, but also a strong reputation and commitment to quality and diversity. That was key for us."

“We thought that developing a strategic alliance was important to have at our disposal the depth and breadth of a Big Four firm in areas like training and technical support,” said Bert Mitchell, chairman and chief executive of Mitchell & Titus. “It also give us access to markets that we by ourselves cannot undertake.”

The firms will also work on their training, recruiting and diversity efforts together, even presenting side-by-side on college campuses. "We want to start this on the college campus and work right through to the board room in presenting quality in resources, and in the people we hire," Charney said.

Mitchell & Titus provides auditing and accounting, tax and business advisory services for Fortune 1000 companies, not-for-profit organizations, government entities, entrepreneurial businesses, health-care organizations, and sports and entertainment professionals. The firm has about 200 employees in its four offices.

— Melissa Klein

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