Celebrating 150 Years of Accru Melbourne

This year Accru Melbourne celebrates a long and proud history that dates back 150 years when a gentleman by the name of Thomas Davey first set up practice as an accountant in Melbourne in 1872.

Thomas J Davey from the album, Jubilee of the Incorporation of the City of Melbourne c. 1892.

Accru Melbourne’s auspicious lineage began in 1872 with Thomas J Davey setting up as a public accountant in Elizabeth Street, Melbourne. By 1884 he had created a partnership with Joseph Flack trading as Davey Flack & Co. From these humble beginnings a number of iconic Australian sporting moments and Melbourne City legacies ensued.

It was Joseph’s son Edwin who became Australia’s first and only Olympian of the modern games held in Athens in 1896. Edwin Flack won Gold in the 800 and 1500 running events, as well as a bronze medal in the double’s tennis representing a mixed team from Australia and England. Following his return from Europe, Edwin worked in the accounting practice with his father and Thomas Davey. Not to be outdone, by 1891 Thomas had been elected as a councillor with the City of Melbourne and went onto become Lord Mayor from 1910-1912. A team of overachievers!

In 1897 another accountant, and part of our rich history, Edwin Lion (known as E.L.) Wilson, became the first secretary of the Victorian Football League, a position he held for thirty-four years until 1929. In 1930 the E. L. Wilson Shield was created to be awarded to each year’s premiership winning team. A perpetual E.L. Wilson trophy was established in 2016 that continues to record the premiership winner of the now Australian Football League. Quite an honour. E.L had a son, Edwin Jnr, known as Eddie, who succeeded his father in the family business, and it was Eddie who joined forces with Barrie Alexander Provan becoming Wilson Provan & Co. A direct forerunner to the Accru brand as it stands today. 

In the 1950s Thomas Davey had parted ways with Messers Flack, whom it is worth noting went on to become the first Price Waterhouse network firm in Australia, and merged with another practice. This team added a young partner Richard (Dick) Bland and as the older partners retired, Dick went onto to join with John Danby trading as Danby Bland & Co. When Eddie Wilson passed away, Barrie Provan, who was operating from premises in Richmond, walked up Punt Road to the offices of Danby Bland and in 1975 they became Danby Bland Provan & Co. 

The practices merged into two Victorian houses on Punt Road known as Shakespeare Terrace, within walking distance of the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Football going people of Melbourne know this charming row of buildings well. Houses with a rich and perhaps sometimes ignominious history! While DBP, as we became known, moved to 390 St Kilda Road and then into a brand-new building in Camberwell Road, Hawthorn East, the historic Shakespeare Terrace buildings remain standing as they were to this day.

In 2008 we moved away from the legacy Partner titled firm name and adopted the ACCRU national brand now trading as Accru Melbourne. Accru has an office in each capital city of Australia with a shared purpose to achieve your version of GREAT by providing Personal + Business + Financial Solutions for Private, Corporate and Not-for-Profit clients.

We are proud of our 150-year history from Thomas Davey’s foundations in 1872 and the too many to mention Partners or Associates who helped shape the firm into the value focussed business we have today. Our Vision is Support, Grow, Succeed both in respect of our clients and our own people, along with a primary goal to be a great place to work and deliver exceptional client service within the frame of our four primary values.

About the Author
Accru Melbourne , Melbourne
Accru Melbourne delivers positive financial solutions through exceptional client leadership. We’ve managed clients’ financial needs for more than 150 years and have a team of nearly 100 professionals delivering responsive, personalised and proactive financial solutions for both individuals and businesses across business advisory, audit and wealth management services.
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