McElderry & Associates Joins Hancock Askew & Co.

Savannah, Ga.-based Hancock Askew & Co. (FY18 net revenue of $15.7 million) and Atlanta-based McElderry and Associates have announced a merger.

With this merger, Hancock Askew will have two offices in Atlanta, as well offices in Augusta, Ga., Savannah, Ga., Miami and Tampa, Fla.

McElderry & Associates, led by founder and managing director John McElderry, specializes in tax, financial accounting, management consulting and QuickBooks® services to various clients including high-net-worth individuals, real estate firms, restaurants, and medical and dental practices. These specialties complement existing niche service areas at Hancock Askew.

McElderry says, “My team is excited for the opportunity to provide additional services and work with professionals in various specialties, while ensuring we maintain excellence in customer service and quality of work.”

Michael McCarthy, MP of Hancock Askew & Co., says, “John has significant experience in M&A and transaction work as well as complex tax work for small businesses and high-net-worth individuals.”

Atlanta’s OMP Russell Reece says, “The addition of John McElderry and his team to our Atlanta footprint falls in line with our strategic plans to continue to grow and expand our services for businesses and individuals in the region.”

Aprio Relaunches HPC as Aprio Cloud

Atlanta-based Aprio LLP (FY17 net revenue of $85.1 million) announced that it has completed its acquisition of HPC, a cloud-based accounting firm also based in Atlanta, and it is being relaunched as Aprio Cloud. Aprio announced the acquisition in June.

“With the acquisition of HPC, clients will get their nights and weekends back, no longer spending time on accounting,” says Richard Kopelman, CEO and MP at Aprio. “They will also receive timely reporting on their actual performance, allowing them to grow profits by making sound business decisions with real-time data.”

HPC complements Aprio’s existing outsourced accounting services practice that was established in 2016, giving clients a cloud accounting solution using “best of breed” products and processes.

Aprio Cloud brings together more than 50 best-in-class applications, from companies such as Xero, Bill.com, Receipt Bank, Karbon and Expensify. The technology stack delivers “anytime, anywhere” financial information through data visualizations and dashboards, allowing clients to make smarter, faster decisions.

“Combining our market leadership in cloud accounting with Aprio’s highly respected reputation, breadth of specialty services and global reach made sense for our business and our clients’ businesses as well,” says Bruce A. Phillips, founder of HPC. Phillips will serve as managing director and partner of Aprio Cloud.

Clients may select an Aprio Cloud service package with fixed fees:

  • Bronze – Simplify reconciliation and data processing, and get help with data review and reporting, tax advisory, filing and compliance.
  • Silver – Outsource accounting and automate data processing. Access insights and advice for a greater understanding of financial information.
  • Gold – Get outsourced accounting, an HR department and virtual CFO for smarter planning and faster closings.

Richey May Acquires Amata Solutions

Ken Richey

Englewood, Colo.-based Richey May & Co. (FY17 net revenue of $21.5 million) announced it has acquired Amata Solutions, a provider of customized planning and business intelligence tools for mortgage lenders.

The acquisition comes three months after Richey May made an investment in the firm. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

Amata Solutions is now part of Richey May Technology Solutions, the tech consulting division launched last year. Benjamin Duke, Amata Solutions’ founder, has taken on the role of executive director, data analytics, with Richey May Technology Solutions, where he will be responsible for developing and delivering business analytics solutions for mortgage lending clients.

Amata Solutions provided planning, forecasting and business intelligence tools that allow lenders to make more confident, strategic business decisions based on real-time data. The tools can be applied to all areas of the mortgage business and can be integrated with customer relationship management (CRM) software, loan origination systems (LOS) and general ledger software (GL).

“We were confident that our clients would love Amata Solutions when we partnered with the firm three months ago, but we may have underestimated how much,” says Ken Richey, co-founder and partner of Richey May. “This acquisition puts Richey May in a perfect position to help mortgage lenders address tighter margins and lower volume so they can stay several steps ahead of their competition.”

“Since partnering with Richey May, we have been busier than ever,” says Duke. “There was so much synergy between Richey May’s consulting services and our products and services that it simply made sense to go ‘all in’ and join forces.”

Richey May Technology Solutions offers a full spectrum of technology solutions, from cloud services and cybersecurity to marketing technology, and from governance, risk, controls and privacy to technology management consulting.

Barnes Dennig Joins With Two Firms

Dino Lucarelli

Cincinnati-based Barnes Dennig (FY17 net revenue of $20 million) has joined with Lucarelli Tactical Group and Ducks in a Row to offer broader resources and services to clients.

Lucarelli Tactical Group of Covington, Ky., founded in 2003 by Dino Lucarelli, offers succession planning, capital raising, mergers and acquisitions, business valuation and financial management services to middle-market businesses. Barnes Dennig provides similar and complementary services including business valuations, financial and tax due diligence, quality of earnings reports and transaction accounting. The combined organization will be called Barnes Dennig Transaction Advisory Group.

Ducks in a Row of Milford, Ohio, offers bookkeeping, accounting, QuickBooks® training and consulting and outsourced controller services for entrepreneurs, sole proprietors and non-profits. The firm was founded in 1994 by Tricia Reynolds. These services complement and broaden Barnes Dennig’s focus on middle-market assurance, tax and advisory services. Ducks in a Row will retain its name and will operate as a subsidiary of Barnes Dennig.

McKonly & Asbury Acquires Brewer & Company

Kurt Trimarchi

Camp Hill, Pa.-based McKonly & Asbury (FY17 net revenue of $9.8 million) announces its acquisition of Brewer & Company LLC and the addition of an office in Bloomsburg, Pa.

Owner Daniel Brewer and staff provide tax and business services, with expertise in audit, tax compliance and back-office consulting. Brewer and staff will continue operating from their existing office, and the eight employees will become part of the McKonly & Asbury team.

“The additional resources available by being part of a regional accounting and advisory firm will permit us to provide a wider array of services and expertise to our clients and community,” Brewer says.

For McKonly & Asbury, the acquisition provides a geographic expansion and new talent to support future growth while providing clients with added depth of services.

Kurt Trimarchi, MP of McKonly & Asbury, says, “Since our founding, our approach has been to grow organically as well as to acquire firms with a similar culture and superior client service mindset. The effort we have put into this acquisition is to strive for an excellent outcome for our clients, our team and our firm, and this is certainly an exciting step forward for McKonly & Asbury.”

Baker Tilly Expands Further into Texas Market with Merger

Chicago-based Baker Tilly (FY18 net revenue of $578.4 million), the 13th largest accounting firm in the country, has announced a merger with  Plano, Texas-based Montgomery Coscia Greilich (FY17 net revenue of $54 million).

The combination is expected to finalize on June 1, and is seen as way to expand the firm’s presence in Texas, where the firm already has office in Houston, Dallas, Austin and Fort Worth.

Alan Whitman, Baker Tilly CEO, calls Montgomery Coscia Greilich (MCG) one of the fastest-growing firms in the country – “a real testament to their progressive culture, innovative approach to business and deep-rooted relationships.”

Baker Tilly says MCG’s expertise in assurance, tax services, sales and use tax, and consulting services complement its own industry specializations in manufacturing and distribution, private equity, health care, real estate and international services.

“There is genuine respect and a strong cultural alignment between MCG and Baker Tilly,” MCG MP Gary Boyd said in a statement. “Each firm has an entrepreneurial spirit that brings together exceptional talent and complementary skillsets with a focus on people and a commitment to maximizing client value.”

Allan Koltin, CEO of Koltin Consulting Group, who advised both firms in the deal says MCG is a firm that has grown quickly through organic growth. “Equally impressive is the outstanding talent and leadership they have been able to attract. Baker Tilly is well on their way to becoming a national powerhouse – while keeping their entrepreneurial culture and passion for serving clients. These fundamentals shared by MCG are ultimately what brought the two firms together.”

Last fall, the firm expanded to Houston by merging in MiddletonRaines+Zapata. In August, Baker Tilly merged in RGL Forensics, a global financial investigations and forensic accounting firm. Earlier this month, Baker Tilly announced a three-way combination with municipal advisory firms Indianapolis-based H.J. Umbaugh and Associates (FY17 net revenue of $24.2 million) and Springsted Inc., which has eight offices around the country.

Grassi & Co.’s Not-For-Profit Practice Expands in NYC and Westchester County

Derek Flanagan

New York-based Grassi & Co. (FY17 net revenue of $60.8 million) announces that the audit nonprofit partners and staff of Lederer Levine & Associates of Lyndhurst, N.J., joined the firm on Jan. 1.

The acquisition brings partner Derek Flanagan as well as four professionals to the firm’s offices in New York and White Plains, N.Y. The addition of these specialist resources has expanded and strengthened services provided by Grassi & Co.’s not-for-profit practice, led by David M. Rottkamp.

David Rottkamp

Flanagan has over 30 years of experience in providing audit and accounting services exclusively to not-for-profit organizations. His clients include social services agencies, private and charter schools, arts organizations, private foundations and special needs providers.

“Lederer Levine & Associates’ nonprofit practice bears significant synergies with our practice,” says Rottkamp. “The years of expertise brought by Derek and his team enhances our existing strengths and will expand our geographic reach in the region, placing us at the forefront in serving the needs of this important segment.”

Grassi & Co.’s not-for-profit practice team assists many types of not-for-profit organizations, including organizations involved in government-funded social services, special needs, health care, philanthropic, religious and education.

“With the increasing demands and challenges facing the not-for-profit community, adding a stronger presence in Westchester County is another way the professionals of Grassi & Co. are growing to meet those challenges, says Louis C. Grassi, CEO and MP. “As our firm looks to the future, we’re excited to continue to expand our footprint in the New York region.

Dean Dorton Expands Its Kentucky Presence

David Bundy

Lexington, Ky.-based Dean Dorton Allen Ford (FY17 net revenue of $30.8 million) announces that it is growing in Kentucky with the addition of Tom Buetow and David Dick, formerly of BLD, a long-standing CPA and advisory firm in Louisville, Ky.

Buetow and Dick, along with other former BLD employees, joined Dean Dorton Jan. 1.

Over the last several months, Dean Dorton has announced several areas of expansion, including the December addition of Massey Consulting in Raleigh, NC, which specializes in accounting software products and services; the creation of Dean Dorton Wealth Management, Dean Dorton technology group’s full-service cybersecurity practice, and last year, Dean Dorton Healthcare Solutions, which offers medical billing and credentialing for physicians and physician practices.

This new merger aims to increase Dean Dorton’s client base in Louisville and southern Indiana.

“The addition of Tom, David and their team helps us to better serve our growing practice. We are enthusiastic about continuing the high level of service and expertise these new team members have provided to its notable client base,” says David Bundy, president and CEO of Dean Dorton.

“Our clients’ needs always come first,” notes David Dick. “With the combination of developing client needs and continuous growth, it was critical for us to find a way to continue providing high-quality service efficiently and effectively while providing clients with additional value through a broader range of specialty capabilities, advice and solutions. In addition, we want to offer more opportunities for our employees and referral partners who are the backbone of our business.”

Cherry Bekaert Expands Presence in Austin Market

Richmond, Va.-based Cherry Bekaert (FY18 net revenue of $194.7 million) has acquired Flieller Kruger & Skelton (FKS) of Austin, Texas.

The deal expands Cherry Bekaert’s presence in the metropolitan Austin market. The firm entered the Austin market in early 2018 with the acquisition of Powell Ebert & Smolik, which served Austin and central Texas.

The additional acquisition of FKS adds six partners and more than 40 associates to Cherry Bekaert’s combined Austin practice. Now, the Austin area will be served by eight partners and more than 65 associates.

The firm says it has expertise in the core industry sectors of technology, life and health sciences, advanced manufacturing, distribution, real estate and private equity, all of which are key economic drivers in the Austin community.

Michelle L. Thompson

“Austin is a key growth market for us given the area’s robust economy and innovative business climate,” says CEO and MP Michelle L. Thompson. “FKS has a well-established reputation for quality work and holds similar shared values to Cherry Bekaert in relation to how they treat clients and associates. These and other factors make FKS an ideal expansion partner for us in Austin.”

FKS was founded in 1994 and serves high-net-worth individuals and businesses.

“Joining forces with Cherry Bekaert provides long-term succession and growth opportunities for both our clients and our associates,” notes James Flieller, co-founder of FKS and new partner at Cherry Bekaert. “Future generations of Austin families and businesses will now have access to the resources of one of the 25 largest CPA and consulting firms in the U.S., with the same local relationships and high service quality they’ve enjoyed in the past.”

Cherry Bekaert has admitted Flieller, Wesley Kruger, Greg Skelton, Chad Wiley, Paula Wendling and Jackie Connor as partners.

The professional staff of FKS will continue to operate at their 221 West Sixth St. location in downtown Austin for the near future. Cherry Bekaert plans to relocate other partners and staff to Austin with the goal to house the firm’s expanded local resources in one prominent office location.

Blue & Company Combining With Practice Management Inc.

Brad Shaw

Carmel, Ind.-based Blue & Co. (FY16 net revenue of $77.5 million) has joined with the consulting firm Professional Practice Management Inc. of Worthington, Ohio.

The combined firm will operate as Blue & Co. and employees of Professional Practice Management (PPM) will work from Blue’s Westerville, Ohio, location. The business consulting and accounting firm has worked primarily with physicians, dentists and other health care professionals since 1934.

PPM’s owners, Neil Madsen and David Sproule, will become partners, known as directors, bringing the total number of directors to 50. James Yerina, PPM owner, will be working in a CFO capacity with MaternOhio Clinical Associates. The combined staff of Blue & Co. and PPM will total more than 400 professionals in 10 offices across three states.

“As a firm deeply ingrained in the health care industry, we are looking forward to combined expertise that both firms bring to better serve our clients. We believe the expertise and reputation of both firms complement one another and offer a friendly, client-first culture,” says Brad Shaw, managing director of Blue & Co.

Madsen says, “As we approached the next step in shaping the firm’s future, we realized the time was right to partner with another firm to expand our reach in the market and to offer additional services to our growing client base.”

Sproule adds, “The speed of change in today’s business environment presents some challenges for firms of all sizes but more importantly, it creates opportunities to foster growth while remaining agile and attuned to shifts in technology and leading practices.”