While we are known in the global marketplace by our brand name, "Deloitte." our legal entity name - Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu - owes its existence to three leaders in our profession who, from the beginning of other professional careers, recognized the importance of a worldwide practice.
One of the fathers of the accountancy profession, Deloitte started his career early. At the age of 15 he became an assistant to the Official Assignee at the Bankruptcy Court in the City of London. As president of the newly created Institute of Chartered Accountants, Deloitte found a site for its headquarters in 1888. In 1893 he opened offices in the United States, and Deloitte, as it was known, started to audit a growing soap and candle business.
When George Touche qualified as an accountant in Edinburgh in 1883 and set off south to seek his fortune, there was no 'e' on the end of his name. By 1906, tired of the common English mispronunciation of his surname, he had it changed. A flair for saving doomed businesses from disaster led to the formation of George A. Touch Co. in 1899 and in 1900, along with John Niven, the son of his original Edinburgh mentor, he set up the firm of Touche Niven in New York. Touche Niven offices soon spread across the United States and Canada. Meanwhile Touche himself took his reputation for probity to the electors, became MP for North Islington in 1910 and was knighted in 1917. He died in 1935.
After Tohmatsu qualified as a certified public accountant at the age of 57 in 1952, he became a partner in a foreign-affiliated accounting firm and a director of a private corporation. In 1967, he became president of the Japanese Institute of CPAs. The key to Tohmatsu’s growth was the decision to send a substantial number of partners and professional staff overseas to gain experience. From the beginning, this meant the firm was internationally focused, and this is reflected in its long-standing international clients.