M&A roundup: Deals in Illinois, Rhode Island and Tennessee

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Selden Fox merges in Richard T. DeSimone & Co.

Details: Selden Fox, Ltd., a firm based in Oak Brook, has added Richard T. DeSimone & Company, an accounting firm with a 50-year history of serving the automobile dealer industry.

As part of the deal, shareholders Tom DeSimone and Garth Reimel are joining Selden Fox as vice presidents of dealer operations and will lead the firm’s automobile practice. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Selden Fox has been around for 40 years and has nearly 60 employees, including 48 professional staff members, 35 of them CPAs. DeSimone's firm had three accountants and one administrative staff person, all of whom are joining Selden Fox.

“With the addition of Tom and Garth, we will have the expertise to serve a new niche industry and grow our client roster,” said Selden Fox president Joseph Meyer in a statement. “Even more so, we are further developing our team with two accomplished professionals that are an ideal fit with the culture we are fostering and the vision we have set for the future of the firm.”

Tom DeSimone is the son of the founder of Richard T. DeSimone & Co. Professionals. His experience over the past 30 plus years includes corporate accounting and tax, financial statement reporting, individual income taxes, and representation in IRS audits, both corporate and individual.

“Over the years, we have grown our practice to a size which requires additional personnel and resources available from a larger firm,” he stated. “We were looking for a firm with the close-knit personal touch philosophy we have committed to our clients over the years. We are excited for this transition as we see significant potential for our clients as we join a team of like-minded professionals committed to the same values and client service standards we have been dedicated to at our own firm.”

Reimel’s practice includes tax planning, tax research and compliance for individuals, businesses, trusts and estates.

In addition, Joshua Kenyon, formerly of Richard T. DeSimone & Co. Professionals, will join Selden Fox as a manager. He specializes in corporate accounting and tax services for auto dealerships and other privately held businesses and is also a QuickBooks ProAdvisor.

Rhode Island

Sansiveri, Kimball & Co., LLP adds John W. Clegg & Company

Details: Sansiveri, Kimball & Co., LLP has merged in John W. Clegg & Company, a Providence-based firm, effective Nov. 1, 2018.

The merger brings Sansiveri’s workforce up to over 60 employees and is expected to build upon the foundation that Clegg has established over the past 57 years. Financial terms were not disclosed. Prior to the merger, Clegg was a nine-person firm with two partners, and Sansiveri was a 43-person firm with seven partners. Jason DaPonte will continue to lead Sansiveri as managing partner, while Dennis C. DiBenedetto and Frederick K. Uttley of John W. Clegg & Company will joining the team as partners.

“The addition of John W. Clegg & Company’s talented team reinforces our ability to provide top-notch service and performance to the numerous businesses and organizations in the region,” said DaPonte in a statement. “We’ve taken a hard look at John W. Clegg & Company, and we know that together we can innovate in several key areas and core competencies, as well as maintain Sansiveri’s commitment to stay locally owned, controlled, and managed — like so many of the clients we serve.”

The deal adds to Sansiveri’s footprint in Rhode Island and Southeastern Massachusetts and will give Clegg’s staff opportunities to grow as well. Sansiveri has been providing audit, accounting, forensic, financial planning, valuation, tax, strategic planning and business consulting throughout Southeastern New England since 1975.

“Sansiveri’s leadership team and associates have a deep respect for who we are, our history, and where we want to go,” stated DiBenedetto. “This merger represents a vision that we’ve held for many years: to be able to do more — and to continue do better — for our clients.”

The combined firm will be headquartered at Sansiveri’s current location in Providence, while maintaining Clegg’s current location in North Kingstown.

“We are thrilled to welcome the employees and clients of John W. Clegg & Company to Sansiveri,” said DaPonte. “We are looking forward to what lies ahead and will continue to work together to support the livelihood and vitality of the organizations that we serve.”


HHM CPAs acquires Grisham, Wildman & Work

Details: HHM CPAs, headquartered in Chattanooga, has acquired Grisham, Wildman & Work, a firm based in Memphis, effective Oct. 1, 2018.

The combined firms will operate out of HHM’s Memphis location. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The combination will add two directors, three staff associates and one office administrative staff person to HHM, which will now have 30 team members in its Memphis office. The combined number of employees across the firm is now 155, including 21 partners. HHM is short for Henderson Hutcherson & McCullough PLLC.

Before starting their own firm in 1993, Dave Wildman and Jerry Grisham spent more than 15 years working at George B. Jones, one of the first CPA firms focusing on the automobile industry. They service local dealerships in the Memphis area in addition to dealerships in other states, including California.

“The automotive industry experience Dave and Jerry bring to the table will complement the depth of service provided by HHM’s dealership group, and we are looking forward to strengthening the relationships with their clients that have been built over their long careers,” said HHM partner Darrin Yoder, who leads the Memphis office dealership practice.

All of GWW’s employees are expected to stay on after the merger. Both Wildman and Grisham joined HHM as directors.

“We are very excited to partner with Grisham Wildman & Work to expand our footprint in the Memphis area,” said Jason Martin, managing partner of HHM’s Memphis office. “The combined firm will offer us the opportunity to build new relationships while utilizing the expertise and professionalism the GWW staff has been known for through the years.”

HHM opened an office in Memphis in 2015, acquired Brundige Payne & Company in August of 2017, and then moved to its new offices late last fall.

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