TAX & FINANCIAL PLANNING NEWS

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INTUIT TAX REVS DROP Revenue for Intuit's professional tax operations, primarily sales of Pro-Series and Lacerte, dropped to $94 million for the second quarter ended January 31, down from $96 million in last year's corresponding quarter.

The result represented a continuing trend in an area in which Intuit says it has lost some customers to other tax software vendors. Meanwhile, the company says its earnings dropped to $147.3 million from $149.1 million a year earlier. Second quarter revenue was $662.6 million, up from $633.4 million in last year's corresponding period.

WK REVENUE RISES

Partner Insights

Wolters Kluwer, the Dutch company that owns CCH Tax & Accounting, says that it achieved a 1 percent rise in organic revenue for 2004, reversing the 2 percent decline of the prior year.

The company did not report revenue or earnings figures in its preliminary report. However, Nancy McKinstry, chairman of the executive board, says that areas of strong growth included tax and accounting. The company says it is ahead of its cost-cutting plan with 1,245 jobs slashed out of a three-year goal a reduction of 1,600 positions. Operating margins were 15 to 16 percent, before a roughly $13 million restructuring charge.

THOMSON BUYS TAX PARTNERS

Thomson has acquired Tax Partners, a sales and use tax compliance service firm that will become part of the RIA Compliance organization at Thomson Tax & Accounting.

Terms were not disclosed. Based in Atlanta, Tax Partners was founded in 1999. The company's services are based on its Tax Remittance and Compliance System, which provides data, return, treasury, and jurisdiction management. It also offers specialized services for telecommunications, retail, leasing, and manufacturing tax compliance.

STF PUTS FORMS ON THE WEB

STF Services of East Syracuse, N.Y., has released an Internet version of SuperForm Sales Tax Rates/ Forms, its sales tax computation and compliance software.

Released in CD form in August 2003, the product offers the ability to check and confirm tax rates for several thousand taxing jurisdictions. Varieties available include rates-only, forms-only, and a rates and forms package. The company also makes jurisdictional packages.

CCH EXTENDS OUTSOURCING

CCH Tax & Accounting has added business tax forms to the list of forms accepted for processing through its ProSystem fx Outsource.

The company is now accepting Forms 990, 1065, 1120, and 1120S through the Outsource service. CCH sited strong customer demand for the decision to expand the outsourcing business.

ADVENT CUTS LOSS

Advent Software cut its net losses to $398,000 for the fourth quarter ended December 31, down sharply from loss of $75 million in last year's corresponding period.

Last year's loss reflected a tax provision of $70.5 million. This year's results benefited from credit of $726,000 relating to updated estimates of restructuring charges. Revenue hit $38.6 million in the most recently ended quarter, compared to $36.9 million a year ago.

PAYCYCLE HIRES CEO

Online payroll vendor PayCycle has hired James Heeger, a senior vice president at Adobe Systems, as its new CEO.

Heeger replaces founder and current CEO Rene Lacerte, who has become chief financial office and is leading the finance and business development effort for the Palo Alto, Calif.-based company.

TAXWISE GETS IRS CONTRACT

The Internal Revenue Service has awarded TaxWise of Rome, Ga., a five-year contract to supply the software used in the IRS-supported Volunteer Tax Assistance and Tax Counselors for the Elderly Program.

TaxWise says it is the eleventh straight year that its software has been selected. The package will also be used at the IRS-operated Taxpayer Assistance Centers. Volunteers and IRS employees receive three-day training sessions on the software. This year, government-sponsored users will be able to download the software if they have broadband service.

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