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Accounting firms join forces in a recent merger

A pair of accounting firms with a significant foothold in Michigan and other Midwestern states has merged.

The first company, based in Southfield, Michigan, was 12th on the list of Accounting Today's Top 100 firms this year. Its new partner, with headquarters in Chicago, was 57th on the 2012 list. Together, they had a combined revenue of about $375 million and have 2,000 employees in 22 Midwestern offices and three overseas.

The merger will result in a new firm with more than 5,000 clients, specializing in industries such as finance, real estate, venture capital and manufacturing. The merged company will take the name of the Michigan firm.

The managing partner of the smaller firm said that the motivation to merge came from the offerings of services from the larger company. The smaller company had to refer some jobs outside the firm and now, it will be able to accommodate a wider range of clients because of the additional scope of services.

The general partner of the larger firm said that the two firms will synergize their offerings and enable the newly formed partnership to grow. His said the company officials foresee the merged firm as a major player in the middle of the country, where employees will serve clients that require expert advisors in the accounting field.

A consultant in the industry said the two companies were ideal partners for a merger. The smaller company now will acquire deeper products, services and expertise. The larger company, which already has a foothold in Michigan, now will become a dominant firm in another state.

The consultant also said the two companies share a vision of how to treat employees, not just clients. The partners on each side likely saw the pairing as a fit not only in terms of clientele but with staff, as well, he said.

Mergers and acquisitions are most successful when the partners complement each other and each has something to gain. The end result can lead to improved opportunities for the business' clients and employees.

Source: Accounting Today, "Plante Moran to Merge in Blackman Kallick," Roger Russell, June 26, 2012

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