Crowe Horwath Launches New Tax Technology

Chicago-based Crowe Horwath (FY17 net revenue of $809.5 million) has launched its tax service delivery platform, Crowe Tax Connect.

“Centralized data paints the big picture and allows us to focus on high-risk areas and other critical factors. At Crowe, we understand data analysis provides our clients with deeper insight into their businesses and the intelligence they need for more informed decision-making,” says Geralyn Hurd, partner in tax technology.

Crowe Tax Connect helps clients:

  • Centralize and use data more effectively
  • Enhance the quality and effectiveness of Crowe processes
  • Gain meaningful, valuable insights
  • Engage the most qualified resources based on needed expertise.

“Forward-thinking firms, like Crowe, that can combine innovative technology with deep specialization are well-positioned to provide a unique client experience,” says Gary Fox, MP of tax services. “Crowe Tax Connect looks to the future and sets the stage for advanced technologies, such as machine learning and advanced data analytics.”

Friedman Launches New Cybersecurity Service, CyZen

New York-based Friedman LLP (FY16 net revenue of $94 million) has launched a new service, CyZen. This will consist of a five-person team of cybersecurity advisors that provides clients cybersecurity support against the growing risk of cyber threats.

The CyZen team will safeguard individuals and companies in both the public and private sectors spanning a broad range of industries. CyZen offers clients cutting-edge cybersecurity through a customizable suite of services, including assessment, testing, remediation and monitoring.

Jacob Lehmann, managing director of CyZen, has more than 10 years of experience spearheading proactive, innovative and custom-tailored solutions that help safeguard clients from cybersecurity risks. His engagements span small and medium businesses and high net-worth individuals to big enterprise-level engagements and start-ups across broad spectrum of industries including, technology, banking, finance and real estate.

William Mendez, director of Friedman CyZen, has more than 10 years of experience strategizing and executing innovative cybersecurity solutions for entities ranging from small and medium-sized businesses to large corporations in the finance, real estate, nonprofit, education and energy sectors.

Sean Johnstone is a senior specialist who focuses on penetration tests and vulnerability assessments in the cybersecurity space. He has led cybersecurity awareness training for northeast clients.

William Keppler is a senior specialist with more than five years of experience in the cybersecurity space. He has conducted ethical hacking, software security, web application security, programming and vulnerability research.

Eric Freeman is a senior specialist focusing on building tailored solutions to help defend endpoints and networks from advanced threats.

Dermody Burke & Brown Launch New Agribusiness Services Group

Syracuse, N.Y.-based Dermody Burke & Brown launched an agribusiness service group. Though they have serviced clients in the industry for a number of years, this officially marks the beginning of a formalized group.

The firm serves dairy farms, feed mills, swine and hog farms, beef farms, apple orchards, distilleries, wineries, vineyards and breweries. Dermody Burke & Brown currently provides a wide range of business accounting, auditing and taxation services to 50 to 100 clients in the agribusiness industry. Principal David Corey, Jr. leads the agribusiness service group and is supported by a department of experienced staff.

P&N Launches Cybersecurity Solution for Businesses

Baton Rouge, La.-based Postlethwaite & Netterville (FY17 net revenue of $58.3 million) announced the release of CYBERVEIL security solution, a full suite of cybersecurity and forensic services. CYBERVEIL helps clients identify, protect, monitor and respond to cyber threats.

CYBERVEIL provides clients with a full-scope, fully customizable approach to 24/7 cyber monitoring and protection. It is ideal for organizations that have suffered a data breach, companies lacking IT staff with specific cybersecurity expertise, or those concerned their IT security programs are not as sophisticated as the ever-evolving cyber threats.

“Cybersecurity is one of the greatest risks to our clients, and with more than fifteen years of focusing on information security and data protection, this solution evolved based on our clients’ needs and regulatory environments. We believe it’s a clearer path for clients needing specific expertise in cybersecurity and risk management,” says Michael Richmond, director of technology services.v

Outsourced CFO Community Gains Momentum

The Maryland Association of CPAs and its center for learning and innovation, the Business Learning Institute, has helped plant the seeds for a community of professionals who call themselves outsourced CFOs.

That community now includes the MACPA’s new Outsourced CFO Task Force, a group of MACPA members who are interested in promoting outsourced CFO services and sharing resources.

The task force officially went public recently by hosting the MACPA’s Outsourced CFO Community Forum, a gathering of MACPA executives as well as outsourced CFOs and those who use their services. The event was a platform for sharing issues that impact the outsourced CFO community, lessons learned from those who have made the journey, and insights from leaders of firms that offer outsourced CFO services.

“I see this community as the third branch the personalized business application of the private company CFO with the ability to oversee and advise multiple companies at once,” says Barrett Young, former member of the MACPA’s board of directors. “The group of firms seeking to add this service within their existing companies surpasses the group of sole practitioners and dedicated outsourced companies. This is not a niche idea any longer. Larger firms are paying attention. The time to move on this is now.”

“It might be the first time I’ve seen a niche service that spans the entire range of our profession,” says MACPA executive director Tom Hood.

“Outsourcing jobs to independent contractors can go in waves with businesses, but with the help of the MACPA I hope we can continue to educate the small to mid-size business community that the skills of a CFO are something every business needs – if only on a part-time basis,” says Kelly Jennings, founder and CEO of Quincy CFO and a former member of the MACPA Board of Directors. “For the sake of businesses at every stage out there, I hope outsourced CFOs become commonplace.”

View Tom Hood’s presentation from the event here, and the forum report here.

Keiter Launches Transaction Advisory Group

Keiter (FY16 net revenue of $25.5 million) of Glen Allen, Va., announced that it has formed a new transaction advisory group serving lower middle market companies in the greater Richmond region. Recent talent additions James McGrath and Matthew Austin will lend their expertise to this group.

James McGrath

James McGrath

McGrath will serve as managing director of Keiter transaction advisory services. He joins Keiter with more than 17 years of corporate finance experience advising middle market companies and private equity groups, including broad experience in mergers and acquisitions, private equity and debt placements, and bank financings. His merger and acquisition transactions span business and technology services, health care, energy, and specialty manufacturing.

Austin joins Keiter Stephens Advisors as a director with significant mergers and acquisitions, transaction and analytics experience. Carroll Hurst and Scott Zickefoose will also be actively involved in service delivery for this group.

“Since our founding in 1978, we have amassed a wealth of experience in the mergers and acquisition space. This new practice builds off that experience and enhances it through the recruitment of some of the best and brightest transaction professionals,” says Michael Gracik, MP of Keiter.

Citrin Cooperman Expands Consulting Practice as Ronan Joins Firm

New York-based Citrin Cooperman (FY16 net revenue of $233 million) has expanded its advisory services with the launch of a new service line, strategy and business transformation (SBT).

As part of the expansion, Steve Ronan was admitted as a principal and practice leader of this initiative. The strategy and business transformation service line was formed to help clients develop and implement strategies, tailored to their industry and economics, which will improve process and profitability, create scalable businesses, and address business challenges.

Through the services of the SBT group, Citrin Cooperman clients will receive assistance with assessing critical aspects of their business, develop alternate strategies and vision, and develop, implement and monitor operational road maps to help achieve business and financial objectives. The SBT team will provide clients with expertise in strategic planning, process improvement, talent management and technology utilization.

Steve Ronan

Steve Ronan

Ronan has worked with many companies helping them develop and execute strategies to improve profitability, create scalable businesses and strengthen customer relationships. His client experience extends from traditional management consulting disciplines to the latest trends in management and technology. His industry experience includes manufacturing, technology, media and entertainment, franchising, life sciences, real estate and financial services.

Combining our background and skills with Citrin Cooperman’s strong portfolio of services will create a truly unique offering in the marketplace that will create substantial value for our clients,” says Ronan.

PKF O’Connor Davies Launches Recruitment Service

New York-based PKF O’Connor Davies (FY15 net revenue of $123 million) has launched TalentConnect, a new outsourced recruiting offering that allows clients to utilize the firm’s deep team of HR experts and network of accounting and finance professionals to identify and recruit top talent for their organizations.

The service will be offered at a fraction of what it would cost to engage headhunters or employment agencies, the firm announced.

“Talent is the key to winning, and we believe this offering can help level the playing field for some of our clients that don’t have the HR depth to compete in the recruiting game,” says MP Kevin J. Keane. “We have a deep team of HR experts and an unmatched network of accounting and finance professionals that have helped us grow, and now we can do the same for clients.”

TalentConnect brings together businesses with key industry players – from CFOs to bookkeepers – including those who may not be actively searching but receptive to a move. Additional TalentConnect services include formulating job descriptions, advising on salaries and benefits, creating and posting job listings in online and print media, collecting and reviewing responses, cover letters and resumes, and collaborating on candidate assessments.

Sneeringer Leads Group Dedicated to State and Local Taxation

York, Pa.-based Stambaugh Ness (SN) announces the formation of a State and Local Tax (SALT) Practice Area.

This practice area was added to the firm’s portfolio of services in response to the growing number of companies doing business in multiple states, as well as the increasingly complex multi-state tax laws and regulations.

Leading the SALT practice is tax manager Jason Sneeringer, who has a deep working knowledge of multi-state taxation matters. He is a frequent blogger and webinar presenter for SN.

“We recognized the need to offer a higher level of sophisticated, specialized tax services for our multi-state clients,” says Steven Hake, Stambaugh Ness president and CEO. “It’s a complicated area that creates issues for many companies. Jason’s depth of experience and passion for strategic tax planning greatly strengthens our team and our ability to elevate the overall client experience.”

Grant Thornton Adds to Cybersecurity Services

Chicago-based Grant Thornton has recently been accepted into the ServiceNow Services Partner Program – an arrangement that is expected to help businesses use a unique asset-based model to unify their cybersecurity tools into a single threat-management platform.

By participating in the program, Grant Thornton combines its experience advising companies on their governance, risk and compliance needs with implementations of ServiceNow’s cloud-based cybersecurity platform.

Grant Thornton believes the approach is distinctive because it provides a view into risk by analyzing a company’s current cybersecurity operations and third-party solutions, and then pulls them into ServiceNow’s structured-response engine.

“It’s about understanding assets, risks and controls – along with incident data from existing security tools,” says Vishal Chawla, national managing principal for Grant Thornton’s cyber risk advisory services practice. “By starting with the assets – not just the rules – companies can enjoy improved security at lower costs and in a resource-efficient way.”

Grant Thornton expects the approach to be a game changer for middle market companies, which, despite their concerns about cybersecurity, often lack the vital information they need to properly protect their operations.