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Clifton Gunderson, LarsonAllen announce merger

Clifton Gunderson and LarsonAllen, ranked as two of the nation’s top 20 certified public accounting and consulting firms, announced plans to merge and form one of the top 10 accounting firms in the United States.

The partners of both firms have agreed to the combination. Pending final approvals, the merger will take effect Jan. 2, 2012. The new firm will be named CliftonLarsonAllen.

The new firm will have more than $550 million in combined revenue, employ more than 3,600 professionals, including 500-plus partners, and will operate from 25 states and Washington, D.C.

CliftonLarsonAllen reports it will have a “dominant presence in the accounting profession with its highly specialized capabilities in the health care, financial institutions, governmentals, not-for-profits, manufacturing/distribution, construction, real estate, agribusiness, dealerships, employee benefit plans and other industries, in addition to its strong technical foundation in audit, accounting and advisory services.”

“This merger of peer firms changes the landscape of the accounting profession and pioneers a new trend by focusing primarily on private companies and their owners,” said Clifton Gunderson CEO Kris McMasters in a news release.

Gordy Viere, CEO of LarsonAllen, said industry specialization has been at the core of both firms’ practices.

“Coming together heightens our capacity to develop that vital focus and extend it beyond our accounting and advisory services to our wealth management and outsourcing capabilities,” Viere said in the news release. “This cohesive trio of industry-focused guidance is uncommon for private businesses and public sector organizations. It’s a powerful new resource for them.”

The new company will have a national wealth management practice positioned as one of the top three in the accounting profession, with nearly $3 billion in assets under management.

The combined firm reports it will boast a $50 million industry-specialized outsourcing practice to help clients meet their financial, tax regulatory compliance and reporting responsibilities. In addition, CLA will have the capacity to help clients with international dealings successfully do business in a global environment.

Organizationally, the new firm will be built around a holding company and three entities: CLA LLP, CLA Wealth Advisory and CLA Outsourcing — all integrated in their capabilities and delivery of services.

Both Viere and McMasters will continue as CEOs within the integrated CLA firm. Viere will oversee the CLA holding company, the wealth advisory practice and the outsourcing practice, and McMasters will oversee CLA LLP, the public accounting practice.

The company reported both Viere and McMasters share a passion for ensuring their professionals have the tools and experiences to build great careers customized to their individual long-term goals. CLA will offer employees flexibility, career choice, learning programs and experiences designed to attract people who want to develop themselves into well-rounded business and financial professionals, while pursuing their chosen specialty, the company reported.

Clifton Gunderson, ranked as one of the nation’s largest certified public accounting and consulting firms and the largest U.S. member firm of HLB International, provides a wide range of assurance, tax and consulting services to clients in a variety of industries. Founded in 1960, Clifton Gunderson has a staff of more than 1,800 professionals serving clients from 47 offices across the country. Clifton Gunderson, and the separate and independent member firms of HLB International, provides personal and high-quality service to clients in more than 100 countries through the HLB International “Global Care” approach. For more information about Clifton Gunderson, visit

LarsonAllen LLP is a highly industry specialized firm that ranks as one of the U.S.’s top 20 accounting/professional services firms that provides audit, accounting, tax, consulting, and advisory services. Founded in 1953, LarsonAllen has about 1,800 people operating from 40 offices located in Arizona, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas, Washington, Washington, D.C., and Wisconsin. LarsonAllen is an independent member of Nexia International, a top 10 worldwide organization providing services to clients globally. For more information about LarsonAllen, visit

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
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