Our History

100 years of BDO Gisborne

Our reputation as Gisborne’s leading – and largest – accounting firm is steeped in history and stems from a 100 years of delivering exceptional customer service to our clients.

From the early 1900s, staff from the Napier office of McCulloch Butler & Spence – as the original Gisborne firm became known – arrived by horse drawn coach and ship to dispense accounting advice throughout the Poverty Bay region. To accommodate the growing number of East Coast clients, a Gisborne office was opened in 1921.  From humble one-room beginnings, our Gisborne office has morphed into a significant team with over 70 employees.

Our whakapapa - the founding partners of McCulloch Butler and Spence

William McCulloch
John S ButlerMorris Spence

Through numerous name changes – from McCulloch Butler & Spence to McCulloch Menzies, Touche Ross, KPMG Peat Marwick, McCullochs and BDO Spicers – our client focus has remained constant, and the firm’s reputation for excellence has been consolidated.

Since 2007, the firm has come within the worldwide BDO (Binder Dijker Otte & Co) network. BDO is acknowledged as the world’s fifth largest multi-national accounting and advisory firm, and is the fastest growing global organisation in our profession for the last decade. BDO’s Global reach extends across more than 167 countries, with almost 91,000 staff.

We are locally owned and operated by seven partners. The partners are members of the Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CAANZ) and hold certificates of Public Practice.

In acknowledgement of our 100 year milestone anniversary, we would like to celebrate our stories behind the numbers, providing insights into some of our key people, events and achievements over the 100 years we have been in business.