Three Phoenix firms combine

Details: REDW LLC agreed to unite with Abalos & Associates PLLC, and Miller, Allen & Co. PC. The firms will take on the REDW name.

Employees from the three original firms will join the combined firm. The firms will operate out of their existing locations until REDW's new Phoenix office opens later this fall.

REDW's corporate offices are located in Albuquerque, N.M.



Crowe Horwath expands in California

Details: Top 100 Firm Crowe Horwath LLP continued to carry out its strategic growth plans with its recent addition of the staff of California-based NewPoint Group. The South Bend, Ind.-based firm initially started to branch out into Northern California in 2011 when it added local firm Perry-Smith LLP.

Crowe Horwath's newest addition is located in Sacramento, and provides consulting services to state and local government throughout California. James Gibson and Edward Kaempf founded the firm in 1995 and will join Crowe Horwarth as directors.



Fuoco Group merges in Dohan Salum

Details: Fuoco Group of Hauppauge, N.Y., is expanding from its Long Island base to Miami, combining with Dohan Salum + Co., a CPA firm serving the South Florida area.

As part of the deal, Steven H. Dohan and Irene S. Salum have joined Fuoco Group as directors.



BDO brings Argy on board

Details: Top 10 Firm BDO USA now has a stronger presence in government contracting and a larger footprint along the East Coast with the addition of Argy, Wiltse & Robinson PC. The combination went into effect on November 1.

Argy primarily serves government contractors throughout the U.S., a component that BDO wanted to expand on, according to BDO CEO-elect Wayne Berson. "Argy has the leading-edge reputation in government contracting and we plan on leveraging them as a center of excellence in their sector," he said in an interview with Accounting Today.

Argy is bringing 225 professionals and staff, 26 of whom are partners, to the combined firm. The Argy staff also has experience in the nonprofit and technology sectors and private client services.

Argy's president and CEO, Paul Argy, made up his mind to merge with BDO after feeling that his firm was at a disadvantage. "Our larger clients were being cherrypicked by the big companies because we weren't a national firm," he explained.

The tables turned in December when Koltin Consulting Group's CEO Allen Koltin asked Argy if he had ever considered an upstream merger. "For BDO, this is the first of what I think will be many mergers this year," Koltrin said in an e-mail.

Berson, who was elected to succeed Jack Weisbaum, officially took over as CEO on November 1. He said he always intended to grow the firm through acquisitions. His must-haves include expanding the firm's geographic coverage in new strategic markets, gaining critical mass in major existing markets, and adding resources in existing industries or services. "In Argy, I believe we found a firm that has all three of those traits," said Berson.



Mountjoy Chilton Medley merges in McCauley Nicolas

Details: Kentucky's largest CPA firm, Mountjoy Chilton Medley, is planning to combine with McCauley Nicolas, the largest Southern Indiana accounting firm in the Louisville metropolitan area.

The merger, which took effect on October 1, will create a large regional firm in the Kentucky/Indiana/Ohio tri-state area, with offices in Louisville, Lexington and Frankfort, Ky., Jeffersonville, Ind., and Cincinnati. The combined firm will retain the Mountjoy Chilton Medley name.



Meyers, Harrison & Pia acquires Fannon Valuation Group

Details: Meyers, Harrison & Pia LLC has agreed to acquire Fannon Valuation Group of Portland, Maine.

Nancy J. Fannon, who leads Fannon Valuation Group, will join Meyers, Harrison & Pia as partner in charge of litigation assistance services.

Meyers, Harrison & Pia, which is based in New Haven, Conn., now has 48 employees, including 19 experts and 10 additional team members in the Business Valuation and Litigation Assistance Group.



Berkowitz & Associates merges in North Shore Advisory

Details: Berkowitz & Associates CPAs is merging in North Shore Advisory Group for an undisclosed sum, according to the Lowell Sun and the Boston Herald. The combined firm includes 17 people and will operate under the Berkowitz name. Berkowitz & Associates specializes in providing tax preparation services and tax advice, while North Shore Advisory offers investment services via Investors Capital Corp. The two firms have been operating just one floor apart while sharing meeting space.



Bowman & Company bulks up

Details: Bowman & Company LLP, an accounting and management consulting firm based out of Voorhees, N.J., has acquired Moorestown, N.J.-based McGonigle & Co., for an undisclosed amount. The deal took effect on October 1.

John E. McGonigle, who is the sole practitioner of McGonigle & Co., established the firm in 1976. As part of the deal, McGonigle will join Bowman as a consultant.

During an interview with Accounting Today, Robert Biddle, a principal at Bowman, said the acquisition gives the firm entry into an unusual industry: "He services a lot of funeral services groups, and that's not a niche we're in." Biddle said the funeral service industry is quite attractive given that they tend to have legacies behind them and rarely go out of business.



J.H. Cohn and Reznick Group are CohnReznick

Details: Top 20 Firms J.H. Cohn LLP and Reznick Group PC have officially combined to form CohnReznick LLP, which is expected to have 2,000 employees, 25 offices and more than $450 million in revenue.

The merger was originally announced in May, and will create a firm that stretches from Boston to Atlanta on the East Coast, with a number of offices on the West Coast, in Austin, Texas, in Chicago, and overseas in India and the Cayman Islands. CohnReznick will be a member of Nexia International.

J.H. Cohn chief executive Thomas Marino and Reznick Group CEO Kenneth Baggett will serve as co-CEOs of CohnReznick for its first three years, after which they plan to step down.



Brady Ware and Nipps Brown merge

Details: Brady Ware & Company merged with Gahanna, Ohio-based accounting firm Nipps, Brown Collins & Associates. The combination took effect on Aug. 31, 2012.

Nipps, Brown, Collins & Associates has been providing accounting services in the Columbus area since 1977. The firm generally works with clients in the health care industry, mostly with long-term care and their associated options for individuals with intellectual disabilities and the elderly population in Ohio.

Gary Brown, CEO and president of Nipps Brown, will take on a senior leadership role at Brady Ware and will work out of its Columbus office. Operations manager Betty Collins will also join the firm.

Brady Ware, which has offices in Dayton and Columbus, Ohio, Richmond, Ind., and Atlanta, now has approximately 115 accounting professionals.


HBK expands Strategic Valuation Group in Ohio

Details: The valuation affiliate of Top 100 Firm Hill, Barth & King LLC has merged with Strategic Valuation Group of Warren, Ohio. The terms of the deal were undisclosed.

Strategic Valuation Group's managing director, Kelly L. Bianco, moved over to HBK as a principal. The remaining staff will continue to carry out services in its Warren office.


Neece, Malec, Seifert & Vitaz boosts Mentor practice

Details: Neece, Malec, Seifert & Vitaz Inc. has acquired Paul T. Ladas CPA of Mentor, Ohio. Deal terms were undisclosed.

Paul Ladas, who provides tax, accounting and consulting services, established his firm in 1985. "We view the addition of Mr. Ladas' firm as a natural fit to continue the growth of our firm in Northeast Ohio," said Shawn Neece, managing partner of Neece, Malec, Seifert & Vitaz, in a statement.

The regional firm serves clients in Cleveland, Chardon and Madison, and has an existing client base in Mentor.


Skoda Minotti is on an M&A roll

Details: Skoda Minotti has completed the acquisition of Akron, Ohio-based Lomax, Soful & Foster Inc. Terms of the deal were undisclosed.

Skoda's news follows several transactions the firm announced throughout the year. Its most recent CPA firm additions took place over the summer. In July, it expanded its tax practice in Cleveland. The firm then stepped out to get a piece of the Central Florida market in September.

Its latest addition of Lomax, Soful & Foster, which has been in business since 1929, provides accounting, tax and consulting services to companies throughout the Akron market.

The entire staff of Lomax, Soful & Foster will be integrated into Skoda Minotti's office in Fairlawn, Ohio. As part of the deal, Michael Soful and Jeffrey Foster will join the firm as accounting and auditing partners, and Lawrence Foster will join the firm as a tax partner.



CRI's M&A spree continues

Details: Top 100 Firm Carr, Riggs & Ingram LLC added Byrd, Proctor & Mills to its Nashville team. Byrd, Proctor & Mills' team will move to the CRI Nashville office and take on the CRI name.

"This merger provides us with additional expertise in both the health care and real estate industries, as well as specialty services such as estate planning and financial planning," said William H. Carr, chairman and managing partner of CRI, in a statement. CRI, which has its headquarters in Enterprise, Ala., has offices spread across Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee and Texas.

To get a solid footing in Metairie, La., it merged with Rebowe & Co. in 2011. CRI also tapped into the Kentucky market when it merged with Holland CPAs. And in January, the firm acquired the Southern Georgia firm BowenPhillips LLP. The firm also ventured into Northern Louisiana where it picked up Roberts, Cherry & Co.

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