BDO USA LLP has expanded its presence in Virginia by adding the Norfolk-based firm McPhillips, Roberts & Deans PLC, effective November 1.

[IMGCAP(1)]The deal will add 80 staff members to BDO, including 14 partners. McPhillips, Roberts & Deans dates back to 1972, while BDO started out as Seidman & Seidman in 1910. BDO already has offices in McLean and Richmond, Va. The new office in Norfolk will give BDO a total of more than 400 professionals in Virginia. 

MRD offers accounting, tax and retirement plan services, targeting privately held middle-market businesses in the Hampton Roads area. Its client base includes health care businesses, government and construction contractors, real estate companies, auto dealerships and nonprofit organizations. MRD has been part of the BDO Alliance USA since 2010.

BDO USA achieved revenues of $1.29 billion in fiscal year 2016. The firm, based in Chicago, ranked 7th on Accounting Today’s 2016 list of the Top 100 Firms.

“I want to welcome the partners and staff formerly with McPhillips, Roberts & Deans to BDO,” said BDO USA CEO Wayne Berson in a statement. “This combination provides us with a strong presence in the Hampton Roads region, stretching our geographic footprint to southeastern Virginia, and MRD’s experience in the health care, real estate, nonprofit and government contracting sectors melds nicely with our existing industry strengths. Through our previous Alliance relationship, we have a history of collaboration on client work and business development with our new partners and staff. This familiarity will be extremely valuable as we integrate the MRD practice with BDO.”

In the past four years, BDO has expanded quickly, entering 24 new cities and growing its footprint in another 12 markets.

[IMGCAP(2)]BDO plans to keep MRD’s current office location in Norfolk. Once the deal closes in November, MRD CEO Ed Amorosso will become office managing partner of BDO’s Norfolk practice.

“We’ve been a BDO Alliance member for six years, so we’ve done a fair amount of business with them and gotten to understand their capabilities and culture,” Amorosso told Accounting Today. “We felt like BDO’s culture very much aligned with ours. BDO’s core purpose is helping people thrive every day, and we’re very much a firm that focuses on people, whether it’s our clients, our employees or the community. We also believe that the resources BDO has accumulated over the years with its growth and expansion will assist us with our clients’ needs as our clients grow both geographically and in complexity.”

MRD will help BDO reach the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. “The closest BDO office was in Richmond, which is about 90 miles away,” said Amorosso. “This will expand the BDO footprint into Southeastern Virginia into the entire Hampton Roads region. Norfolk is a very large port city so there’s a lot of international work which goes on here. Our firm has done some of that, but the BDO reach on the international side will help us assist our current and prospective clients.”

The combination could help some of MRD’s midmarket clients expand abroad and provide opportunities for the firm’s employees and partners. “Hampton Roads is a midmarket type of community, so we will still concentrate on that, but even in the midmarket the complexities are increasing and geographically folks are reaching out,” said Amorosso. “Because there was not a BDO office here, we’ll keep all of the people. BDO is making offers to 100 percent of our folks.”

The MRD staff has been reacting positively to news of the deal. “It’s been well received,” said Amorosso. “We’ve been very fortunate in our recruiting efforts. We believe that with the technical and leadership resources that BDO has, the growth and opportunity for our folks is tremendous, and that really was a key driver for us.”

The MRD partners plan to stay with the combined firm. “Nobody’s leaving early, and we’re looking at this as a growth opportunity for ourselves too,” said Amorosso. “It’s not an exit strategy. It’s a way for us all to grow.”

Register or login for access to this item and much more

All Accounting Today content is archived after seven days.

Community members receive:
  • All recent and archived articles
  • Conference offers and updates
  • A full menu of enewsletter options
  • Web seminars, white papers, ebooks

Don't have an account? Register for Free Unlimited Access