Two new partners, James Hurst and David Hillan, have been appointed to the tax team at Grant Thornton in Birmingham.

James Hurst will be leading the firm’s VAT team based at its Birmingham office .

He has a wide range of expertise in indirect taxes but, in particular, will be focusing on the retail, automotive and not for profit sectors.

Birmingham head of tax Eric Williams said: “James has been a director in the Birmingham team for the last two years and his outstanding success in that role has resulted in a well-deserved promotion.

“Client demand in the area of VAT and other indirect taxes, particularly following the recent increase in the VAT rate to 20 per cent and the introduction, 18 months ago, of a new penalty regime, is buoyant and now with two partners in our Midlands VAT team we are very well placed to respond to market demands.”

David Hillan joins from KPMG to head the Grant Thornton corporate and international tax team in Birmingham.

Mr Hillan has specialised in this area for more than 10 years and will focus on the development of Grant Thornton’s tax services to large and multi-national companies in the Midlands.

Mr Williams said: “David has a tremendous track record and we are very excited at the extra strength and expertise he will bring to an already successful tax team.

Dave Munton, office managing partner for Grant Thornton in Birmingham, added: “Tax is a vital area for all of our clients and these two partner appointments are a strong statement of the firm’s commitment and ambition to build on the quality and range of our tax expertise in Birmingham. We will continue to look for further such