Prager Metis CPAs Opens Bergen County Office

New York-based Prager Metis CPAs (FY17 net revenue of $82.5 million), ranked No. 56 on the 2018 IPA 100 list, announces the opening of a third office in New Jersey.

The Aug. 1 opening of the new Hackensack office was facilitated by Whitman Business Advisors. The firm also has offices in Basking Ridge and Cranbury.

“The Prager Metis presence in New Jersey continues to grow significantly,” says New Jersey Regional MP Lori Roth, “and opening a third location allows us to continue to provide excellent service to our existing and increasing client base. It also underscores our unwavering commitment to the diverse businesses and individuals throughout the state. We are excited to expand our footprint into Bergen County and extend our presence throughout northern New Jersey.”

The firm will welcome a number of new team members, including partners and principals. Ronald Friedlander will serve as OMP. The firm is also expanding service lines and industry expertise, including public companies, litigation support and international engagements.

“Prager Metis strives to be the ‘go-to’ firm in New Jersey, and our increased expertise in these particular areas strengthens that reputation and brings us one step closer to that ultimate goal,” Roth says. The firm prepared a video announcement.

Grant Thornton Names New Houston Office MP

Georgene Britz

Chicago-based Grant Thornton (FY17 net revenue of $1.75 billion) has named Georgene Britz as Houston OMP.

“Georgene has had an impressive career at Grant Thornton – one during which she has worked successfully across multiple industries, including financial services, hospitality, construction and health care,” says Wally Gruenes, a Grant Thornton regional MP. “She brings remarkable leadership qualities and a great passion for recruiting young people to accounting. We know her industry acumen and significant experience in audit engagements will foster continued success for our clients.”

Assuming the role from Michael Bennett, who recently retired from Grant Thornton, Britz will focus on client service, growth and talent development in the fourth largest marketplace in the United States. During her time at the firm, Britz has assisted clients with M&A work, IPOs, equity security and debt offerings, and SEC filings. For the past three years, she also served as the firm’s audit practice leader in Houston.

EY Appoints New MP for the New York Office

Herb Engert

EY today announced the appointment of Herb Engert as the new MP of the New York office.

Engert, who recently led the firm’s Global Private Equity practice, will now be responsible for the overall client service and internal management at one of the region’s largest professional services organizations. The New York area offices are home to over 9,000 assurance, tax, transaction and consulting professionals.

“I am honored to be named the managing partner of the firm’s largest U.S. office, and eager to drive the continued expansion of the EY footprint in New York,” says Engert. “EY has supported me both personally and professionally throughout my career at the firm, and I’m looking forward to giving back by enhancing our already outstanding client service in the New York area.”

In this role, Engert will bring over 28 years of experience to guide market growth, regional strategy, people engagement, client services and operations in New York. As the firm continues to bolster its presence in the region, with the recent announcement of the move of its U.S. headquarters to a new office at 1 Manhattan West, Engert will oversee the current flagship location at 5 Times Square as well as the new location.

“Our firm will be going through some exciting, transformative changes in the next couple of years, and I’m thrilled to be a part of the change, and help bring innovative solutions to our ever-expanding client base,” says Engert.

Rich Jeanneret, Vice Chair and Northeast Region MP, says, “We are very excited to welcome Herb to the Northeast region’s leadership team. With his market tenacity, forward-looking approach, and ability to unite people and create communities, we are keen to see the positive impact he will serve in accelerating the office’s growth and culture.”

Engert will assume the role held by Mark Besca, who will work in EY Americas Assurance focusing on accounts and with the Professional Practice Quality and Regulatory Matters (PPQRM) group.

RSM Names Nedder National Tax Leader

E.J. Nedder

E.J. Nedder

Chicago-based RSM US LLP (FY18 net revenue of $2.1 billion) has announced that E.J. Nedder has been named national tax leader and a member of RSM’s leadership team, effective Sept. 1.

Nedder succeeds Jeff Johannesen who recently accepted a position as RSM’s chief strategy & innovation officer. As national tax leader, Nedder will be responsible for setting and implementing RSM’s tax strategy. He will also serve as a member of RSM’s leadership team, reporting directly to MP and CEO Joe Adams.

During his 15 years as a partner at RSM, Nedder has held various tax leadership roles at the local, regional and national levels. He most recently served as RSM’s national tax consulting leader. Nedder is also the current chairman of the RSM US LLP Board of Directors. He has served two separate terms, and his current term will conclude this fall.

Weaver Announces Industry Group Leadership Changes

Houston-based Weaver (FY18 net revenue of $127.1 million) has reorganized its financial and commercial industry groupings. The leadership changes enable specific teams to better focus on the firm’s primary industry areas: financial services, commercial services, public sector and private client services.

Effective June 1, Brian Reed, PIC of transaction advisory services and private equity services works with both Kevin Sanford, leader of the national financial services industry group and Melvin “Trey” Hunt III, PIC and leader of the commercial services industry group. The following industry leaders work primarily with Sanford in the national financial services industry group: Matt Anderson, PIC, alternative investments; and James Mihills, PIC, financial institutions services.

Working with Hunt, the following leaders will focus on specific industries: Rob Myatt, who now leads energy services; Brad Jay, who has led manufacturing and distribution services, is now also responsible for technology services; Mark Lund, continues to lead construction services; and Colby Horn, promoted to director of real estate and hospitality services.

Public sector services continue under the leadership of PIC Sara Dempsey. Private client services is co-led by Justin Reeves, PIC, North Texas, and Elizabeth Bunk, PIC, South Texas.

“As a significant part of Weaver’s strategy, our industry groups drive the organization because our clients care that we understand their business,” says Sanford. “They count on us to understand the industry regulations they face, the market and labor trends they feel, and the opportunities and threats that exist and drive their strategic decisions.”

Andersen Tax Welcomes Managing Director Rangel to the Houston Office

Abdon Rangel

Abdon Rangel

San Francisco-based Andersen Tax (FY17 net revenue of $247 million) welcomes Abdon Rangel as a managing director in the Houston office, who will join the firm’s commercial practice. Rangel has more than 20 years of experience in all aspects of the oil and gas industry, and specializes in global tax consulting, federal tax planning, and mergers and acquisitions.

Jason Graham, office managing director of the Houston office, says, “Abdon is an important hire as he transitions into our well-established oil and gas practice, given his deep experience working with oil and gas companies. It was crucial to find someone qualified to take the lead over the energy practice that we have successfully built over the years.”

Before joining Andersen Tax, Rangel was the VP of tax and risk management at Linn Energy, previously one of the largest E&P MLP and institutional investment companies. He also has previous experience at KPMG and PwC, where he was a partner.

Andersen Tax CEO and global chairman, Mark Vorsatz, says, “Abdon brings to the firm expertise and leadership as well as experience in tax planning, tax return compliance and working on upstream, midstream and downstream publicly traded companies. He demonstrates our core values of stewardship and providing best-in-class service and I look forward to his future contributions.”

Middle-Market CEOs Remained Optimistic About Business in the Second Quarter, Finds Marcum CEO Survey

CEOs of the nation’s middle-market companies remained solidly optimistic about the general business environment in the second quarter, according to a survey by New York-based Marcum LLP (FY17 net revenue of $469.5 million). However, the percentage of CEOs with a negative outlook more than tripled during the period.

An overwhelming majority of 96.51% of CEOs rated their business outlook neutral to positive in the survey for the second quarter of 2018. This represents a marginal decline from 99.17% in the first quarter. There was a corresponding increase in CEOs expressing a negative outlook on business, which up-ticked to 3.49% in the second quarter, from less than 1% in the prior period.

The survey’s reading on CEO optimism for the second quarter translates to a weighted average of 7.41, down from 7.77 in the first quarter.

“CEOs maintained a highly positive outlook on the business environment for their companies and their industries overall during the second quarter. However, we saw declines in the upper registers of the rating scale, in the 7 to 10 range, which suggests that CEOs were somewhat less positive in the second quarter than in the first. Interestingly, there was also a diversity of opinion among CEOs, even within the same industries, with some assessing their business outlook at the highest rating and others selecting the lowest. This will be something to keep our eyes on in the next two quarters and beyond,” says Jeffrey Weiner, Marcum’s chairman and CEO.

The Marcum CEO Survey is a quarterly gauge of middle-market CEOs’ outlook of the current business environment and their priorities for the next 12 months. It is a companion to Chief Executive Group’s monthly CEO Confidence Index, America’s largest monthly survey of chief executives.

For the complete Marcum CEO Survey for the second quarter of 2018, visit www.marcumllp.com.

MCM CPAs & Advisors Names Next MP

Brad Smith

Brad Smith

Louisville, Ky.-based MCM CPAs & Advisors (FY17 net revenue of $54 million) recently appointed its next MP. Brad Smith, MCM’s current assurance services team leader, will succeed current MP Diane Medley on July 1, 2019. This transition is a part of the Medley’s intended succession plan, aimed at providing a springboard for future leaders and allowing the firm to continue growing and serving clients well into the future.

“This is a testament to the dedication, thoughtfulness and leadership that Brad has shown in his nearly 16 years with the firm, and especially in his stewardship of MCM’s assurance services team,” says Medley. “Under his direction, MCM has a bright future ahead of it.”

Over the course of the next year, Medley and Smith will work together to gradually transition the role across all seven of the firm’s offices in Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio. Following the transition, Medley will remain with MCM full-time in the role of chair, where she will continue to work with select clients and serve in a strategic firm leadership position.

Smith has been with MCM since 2002. His primary focus with clients is middle market growth-oriented companies in the manufacturing, distribution, services and construction industry niches.

“I look forward to working with Diane and our partners as we continue to execute on MCM’s strategic plan,” says Smith. “I want to ensure we’re always building on the strong foundation provided by our firm’s founders.”

Deloitte Board Fails to Re-Nominate CEO Engelbert

Catherine Engelbert

Catherine Engelbert

New York-based Deloitte (FY17 net revenue of $18.6 billion) has told its partners that the first woman to run a Big 4 firm in the U.S., Cathy Engelbert, has not been renominated for a second four-year term, the Wall Street Journal reported June 28.

The Journal reported that the announcement “stunned” Deloitte partners and that it came as a “complete shock.” The newspaper reported, “The rationale wasn’t made clear, and dozens of partners, unhappy the firm didn’t provide an explanation, sent a letter to Deloitte’s board demanding more information and transparency on the matter.”

Deloitte did not comment, saying it will provide an update when the firm has its formal leadership election in early 2019. Engelbert also did not provide the Journal with a comment.

Engelbert, who has been with the company since 1986, was named CEO in 2015. She ran the audit practice prior to becoming CEO.

The Journal, citing anonymous sources, reported that some are concerned that the move signifies a shift in focus toward consulting and away from auditing. One person “familiar with Deloitte’s CEO election process,” told the Journal that the situation “certainly isn’t just normal succession.”

Engelbert possibly could be renominated for a second term at a later phase of Deloitte’s CEO-election process. A candidate recommended by the board must be approved by two-thirds of Deloitte’s voting partners and principals. Her current term ends next spring.

Since Deloitte named Engelbert CEO, KPMG named Lynne Doughtie as chairwoman and CEO in 2015. At Ernst & Young, Kelly Grier became chairwoman and managing partner July 1.

Weaver Announces Tax Services Restructure and Leadership Changes

Houston-based Weaver (FY18 net revenue of $127.1 million) has restructured and expanded its tax services to enhance the firm’s ability to deliver specialized services and greater value to clients. The restructuring also expands the opportunities for employees to develop their leadership and specialized technical skills.

Effective June 1, Weaver’s tax practice includes three groups: business tax services, private client services and investment fund services. Sean Muller is the COO for all tax services. Business tax services is now led by two partners: Clint Siddons, promoted to PIC for the North Texas region; and Robert Henry, promoted to PIC for the South Texas region. For the private client services group, Elizabeth Bunk was promoted to PIC for the South Texas region and Justin Reeves to PIC for the North Texas region. For the investment fund services group, Lisa Head was promoted to PIC of investment fund tax services. Working with Mark Watson, PIC of tax quality and risk management (QRM), are Sam Wren, promoted to the PIC of business tax QRM, and Laura Roman, promoted to a new role as the PIC of tax education.

“Recently, we’ve added several new partners and practices such as our investment fund group,” says Muller. “We have seen a significant increase in value from placing more focus on tax work for private equity and other alternative investment funds, as well as their portfolio companies. Growth in this sector helps us enhance the technical expertise of our team members and provide more insightful service to these niche clients.”

“This opportunity allows us to work with all of our partners and staff to take our tax service line to new heights,” Muller continued. “Together, we will deliver new value to our current and future tax clients. I look forward to what the future holds for the firm and the tax practice.”

The business tax services group focuses on compliance and consulting for public companies; private equity portfolio companies and large companies.

Weaver’s private client services group captures the majority of the firm’s current tax clients, focusing on individuals and small to mid-size businesses. They will provide tax compliance and consulting as well as estate, gift and trust tax services.

Weaver’s investment fund services group focuses on compliance and consulting for hedge funds, venture capital funds and private equity funds.