Reading, Pa. (Jan. 15, 2004) -- Top-ranked CPA firm Beard Miller Co. LLP has expanded into Maryland and strengthened its financial institutions practice niche with the merger of Baltimore-based Anderson Associates LLP into its fold.

The deal adds one office, two partners and 11 employees to the firm, giving Beard Miller 325 employees, including 51 partners, and eight offices. Anderson partners William R. Anderson and David M. Flair joined Beard Miller as partners.

The move also adds 27 financial institution clients, bringing the number of clients Beard Miller serves in that niche to 130. It provides audit, tax and business advisory services to commercial bank, savings and thrift, de novo and SEC registrant institutions, and provides internal audit and compliance services to financial institutions through its subsidiary, Financial Outsourcing Solutions LLP.

Beard Miller spokeswoman Donna Mazzo said that, while the firm isn’t actively seeking merger partners, leaders from both firms felt that Anderson was a good fit. “Anderson Associates approached us because of our financial institutions practice,” Mazzo told WebCPA. “It was a good fit for both firms. We have a large practice already serving financial institutions in Pennsylvania, New York and Delaware, so the Maryland market was a natural fit for us. Anderson serves SEC banks. Because of the Sarbanes-Oxley regulations of SEC banks, they would have started to have partner rotation issues, and they wanted to stay in that business.”

Bill Anderson said the move offers Anderson’s clients broader expertise in financial institutions, SEC practice and tax, and enables it to broaden its offerings and access the additional services and industry specialties that Beard Miller offers.

Anderson had revenues of approximately $1 million. Beard Miller Co. ranked 43rd on Accounting Today’s 2003 Top 100 Firms List with revenue of $30.3 million. The Reading, Pa.-based firm specializes in serving the financial services, manufacturing, wholesale, distribution, real estate and construction, medical practices, retail, public utility and nonprofit sectors. Beard Miller’s last major merger was in January of 2002, when it merged in Lancaster-based Dorwart Andrew & Co.

-- Melissa Klein

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