Igal Brightman, one of the key figures in the accountancy profession in Israel, tragically killed in plane crash.

Brightman, CEO of the major local accounting firm of Deloitte Brightman Almagor Zohar, lost his life when his light airplane crash landed while approaching Eilat on a routine flight from Herzliya in the center of the country.

יגאל ברייטמן

Igal Brightman

/ By Yoel Bermant/ 

The reasons why Igal Brightman, an experienced pilot lost control of his light plane while approaching to land at Eilat airport late on Thursday still remain unclear. There is some speculation that Brightman, who was flying with two passengers, may have been caught in a sudden and powerful crosswind that caused him to lose control of the aircraft. According to initial reports, Brightman did not give any indication that he was in any form of distress before the plane crashed.

Igal Brightman founded his own accountancy practice, Brightman & Co., based in 1972, building it into a considerable fall on the Israeli business scene, with branch offices strategically situated throughout the country in the main business centres.

Brightman’s rapid expansion and strong credibility caught the attention of leading international accountancy firm, Deloitte, reached an affiliation agreement with the company in 1994.  Not only did Brightman continue in his role as CEO of Deloitte, Brightman Almagor Zohar number he was soon appointed to become a member of Deloitte’s global board where he was to remain for close to eight years.

Apart from his professional activities, Igal Brightman was also particularly active as a member of the board of the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, where, for many years, he acted as head of the museums corporate club, and thanks to his extensive connections within the Israeli business community succeeded in consistently raising considerable funding on behalf of the museum, Brightman also chaired the museum’s audit committee.

Brightman also sat on the board of governors of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev as well as on the advisory board of School of Management for Tel Aviv University.

Tragically, it was an open secret within in the business community in Israel, that Brightman, was a time of his death was 68 years old, and had been preparing for his retirement, due to take place at the end of the year.

According to a representative of Deloitte Brightman Almagor Zohar, Igal Brightman has already chosen his successor, Ilan Birnfeld, the practice’s current managing partner.

Birnfeld, who had worked in the practice with Brightman for more than twenty years despite confessing to be still in shock over his colleague and mentor’s death, take the time to say a few words, stating that Igal understood that assuring the prosperity and stability of the firm required the creation of a generation of partners that could move the firm forward and carry out its strategy. “Igal was a first-class strategist, a man who understood and knew business, with a sharp ability to size matters up, sharp in his thinking and very creative in finding simple solutions to complex problems.” Birnfeld continued “These characteristics resulted in his being asked to sit with decision makers in the business field and in the public and government sector. When there was a problem, they knew they could call Igal and expect a solution.”

Birnfeld summed up by stating that while Brightman was in the advanced stages of preparing for his departure from the firm and for Birnfeld’s subsequent takeover, no one could have expected for a moment that his departure would be so sudden and so tragic.

One of the first bodies to issue a condolence message were the Bank of Israel where the bank’s acting governor Karnit Flug described Brightman as one of the leaders of the Israeli financial sector and a man whose considerable presence will be missed to do his considerable activities and amenities on the public scene.

Igal Brightman was laid to rest in Tel Aviv on Sunday

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