Minneapolis (Nov. 12, 2003) -- Midwest powerhouse LarsonAllen has expanded into Wisconsin with the merger of Eau Claire-based accounting and tax firm Stienessen, Schlegel & Co. into its fold.

The deal, effective this month, adds 35 employees, including four principals, and $3.6 million in revenue to the firm. SSC managing member Stephen Bien, who joins the firm as a principal, will lead the Eau Claire office.

The move strengthens LarsonAllen's industry specializations in health care and financial institutions. "This really is our doorway into Wisconsin for those industry specializations and it makes sense for us geographically," chief executive Gordon Viere told WebCPA. "We already had a fair number of bank clients in the region. It's a much better way to serve our existing clients and to attract new ones."

Viere said health care accounts for about 30 percent of the firm's volume, while financial institutions account for 10 percent. The firm also has industry niches in public service, including nonprofits, government agencies and universities, construction, auto dealerships, and manufacturing/distributing.

Viere noted that the firm's long-term expansion plans center around developing hub offices in areas where it has industry specialization capabilities.

LarsonAllen, which ranked No. 21 on the 2003 Accounting Today Top 100 Firms list with $83.83 million in revenue, has seven other offices, and about 800 employees, including 75 partners.

-- Melissa Klein

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