Springfield, Mo. (March 23, 2004) -- Looking to penetrate the CPA market in New Mexico, national firm BKD LLP is reportedly in merger negotiations with Albuquerque-based Neff + Ricci LLP -- one of the state's largest tax and accounting firms.

“New Mexico is an interesting geography for BKD,” Bill Fingland, managing partner of BKD, told WebCPA.com. Fingland would neither confirm nor deny the merger negotiations.

Wayne Brown, managing partner at Neff + Ricci, was not available for comment. However, he told the New Mexico Business Weekly that N+R had been contacted by various firms regarding potential mergers and was “seriously considering the matter.”

Founded in 1947, Neff + Ricci has a staff of 112 and has carved out specialty niches in health care, construction, financial institutions, and colleges and universities.

BKD, ranked No. 13 on Accounting Today’s 2004 Top 100 Firms list, reported nearly $216 million in revenue in its last fiscal year and has 27 locations. The firm's last merger was in October with EKW & Associates of Owensboro, Ky.

-- Bill Carlino

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