2020 Outlook: Upstream Mergers

Look forward 10 years and be realistic about succession.

By Terry Putney
The Rosenberg MAP Survey

There appears to be an emerging mindset among buyers that because of the possible demise of compliance services like tax return preparation, smaller firms with significant 1040 practices should be avoided. Right now, there is no evidence the demise of the 1040 business is imminent for other than the simplest returns.

MORE: 2020 Outlook: Staffing Gets Creative

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Terry Putney

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About the Author

Terrence E. Putney, CPA, is CEO of Transition Advisors, a mergers-and-and-acquisitions broker for CPA firms. Terry has more than 35 years’ experience in the CPA profession. For six years, he served as Managing Director - Mergers & Acquisitions for RSM McGladrey, the country’s fifth-largest accounting firm and held several executive posts with its corporate parent, H&R Block. At RSM, he structured and negotiated numerous deals resulting in the acquisition of accounting and consulting firms ranging in size from sole proprietors to multi-state firms with hundreds of staff and professionals. Prior to joining McGladrey, he served as Managing Partner of Donnelly Meiners Jordan Kline, a 60-person CPA firm in Kansas City.

Terry believes it’s imperative that practitioners have a clear understanding of their objectives when pursuing a sale of their practice or the merger with, or acquisition of, another practice. “I've seen deals not work or not materialize because one of the parties to the succession plan had not thought through what they really wanted to accomplish. Transition Advisors will make sure the approach to executing your plan will meet your objectives. Because we are consultants and not brokers, we can be much more flexible in helping a firm succeed with its transition plan.”

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