Making connections in Latin America
Praxity membership has opened doors for VBR Brasil to collaborate internationally and provide even greater levels of client service
“We always want to serve our colleagues well and send referrals to quality firms. Praxity enables us to do this. We are consistently surprised by the speed and kindness of our colleagues in other independent accounting firms within the alliance.”
Firm: VBR Brasil
Praxity membership: Associate
Sector: Audit, Accountancy & Corporate Finance
Head office: Curitiba
VBR Brasil was founded in 2002 to provide high level consulting, audit, tax and valuation services to midsize businesses. The firm employs a young and energetic team across three offices and one associated office. VBR has the enviable distinction of joining Praxity Global Alliance not once but twice, firstly when part of a ACAL & Terco, and more recently as an entirely independent accounting firm. In both instances, VBR sought to extend its international reach and work with trusted colleagues within the Alliance to help clients do cross-border trade.
One of the leading accountancy firms in Brazil, VBR was keen to establish strong, mutually beneficial relationships with likeminded firms in other countries. The objective was to exchange expertise, provide added value for clients in a seamless way, and generate more business. With the pandemic severely limiting opportunities to develop connections globally, VBR focused on building relationships with Praxity participant firms in Latin America.
The Praxity solution
Being part of Praxity enabled VBR Brasil’s Managing Partner Wesley Figueira to reach out and connect with likeminded people in other countries, including his Mexican counterpart Bernardo del Rio, Managing Partner at J.A. Del Rio, a Praxity participant firm with offices in Colombia and Mexico.
Wesley explains: “Each and every relationship within Praxity starts with the personal contact and interaction in annual meetings and specific interest group meetings. That was exactly the case with J.A. Del Rio. We had two things in common – we were from Latin America and we were newbies in Praxity. The alliance’s Global Conference in Athens in 2019 was the starting point for us to meet and explore the potential for working together.”
The outcome: new opportunities and new friends
Praxity provided a platform for Wesley and other Partners at VBR Brasil to forge strong ties with accounting professionals from J.A Del Rio in both Colombia and Mexico. Stressing the importance of developing relationships with people that share the same values, Wesley says: “Bernardo del Rio is a fantastic leader who demonstrated to be not only a good professional but a nice conversationalist. That is not a common trait in CPAs, but one that must be present when you reach a Managing Partner position. Having got to know one another in Athens, we continued to develop our knowledge of each other’s organizations. This enabled us to effectively engage each other in actual jobs. The clarity in which we conveyed the needs of our respective clients and the desired deliverables were also key to the success of the projects we developed together.”
Despite the pandemic severely limiting opportunities to network, VBR Brasil has been able to lay the foundations for future collaborations with firms in Europe and the US. Wesley says: “We have ambitious plans for our firm and we are excited to participate in Praxity. We are still very much at the beginning of our second time around in the alliance and we surely expect to have the same success we had in our first passage. We will certainly be active participants. We will take advantage of the experience of our colleagues in larger firms and we hope to share in their successes by working together seamlessly in a single team. It is always very good to see your clientele served by Praxity participant firms and to serve other firms’ clientele. We have maintained a high level of response to clients referred from abroad and have received the same high quality of service from firms from all over.”
Praxity membership gives confidence while allowing accounting professionals to meet and work with interesting and talented people. “Our partners and colleagues within Praxity are, above anything, good friends” Wesley explains. “I personally like golf, wine and lots of reading, and it is lovely to share my interests with my Praxity counterparts while also helping our clients overcome their global business challenges.