IPA Names Best Managed CPA Firms of 2006

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Hundreds of certified public accounting (CPA) firms participated in INSIDE Public Accounting's (IPA) Annual Benchmarking Survey. Only 25 have been dubbed the “Best of the Best” as the nation's 25 best managed firms, based on fiscal and management performance.


“INSIDE Public Accounting's Best Of The Best designation is an elite honor because it's based entirely on fiscal and operational performance,” IPA Publisher Michael Platt explained. “These twenty-five firms are at the top of their game, and are operating in ‘the zone' of exceptional performance.”

So, who are the top 25 firms? In alphabetical order they are:

  • Armanino McKenna, San Ramon, Calif.
  • Aronson & Company, Rockville, Md.
  • Beers & Cutler, Vienna, Vir.
  • Berkowitz Dick Pollack & Brant, Miami, Fla.
  • Burr, Pilger & Mayer, San Francisco, Calif.
  • Crowe Group, Indianapolis, Ind.
  • Feeley & Driscoll, Boston, Mass.
  • Grassi & Company, Lake Success, New York
  • Harb Levy & Weiland, San Francisco, Calif.
  • Hein & Associates, Denver, Colo.
  • Holthouse Carlin & Van Trigt, Santa Monica, Calif.
  • Malone & Bailey, Houston, Texas
  • Marcum & Kliegman, Melville, New York
  • Miller Grossbard & Associates, Houston, Texas
  • Moore Colson, Marietta, Georgia
  • Moore Stephens Frost, Little Rock, Ark.
  • Morrison, Brown, Argiz & Farra, Miami, Fla.
  • RBZ, Los Angeles, Calif.
  • Seiler & Company, Redwood City, Calif.
  • Stout, Causey & Horning, Sparks, Md.
  • T.R. Moore & Company, Houston, Texas
  • Tauber & Balser, Atlanta, Georgia
  • Whitley Penn, Hurst, Texas
  • Windham Brannon, Atlanta, Georgia
  • WithumSmith+Brown, Princeton, New Jersey

This year, smaller firms are back on the list, which was dominated by large firms in 2005. The 2006 top 25 firms have revenues ranging from $3.3 million to $395.6 million. Three of the 25 have net fees under $5 million and 11 have net fees under $20 million.

The Best of the Best firms boast an average profit margin of 38.2 percent, more than 4 points higher than the average for all firms participating in the survey. Their net income grew by 22 percent and net revenue increased by almost 25 percent. They generate a significantly higher percentage of revenue from non-attest services than all the other firms participating in the survey, as well as the 100 largest non-national firms.

Average staff salaries at the top 25 firms are 12.2 percent higher than for all firms, while their turnover rate, at 14.2 percent, is nearly 2 points lower than that of the 100 largest non-national firms. Fees per employee are $195,000, compared to $148,000 for all participating firms. In addition, the $948,000 net income per equity partner among the top 25 firms is almost twice that of all firms participating in the survey.

The Best of the Best are featured in the October 2006 issue of INSIDE Public Accounting. To order a copy of INSIDE Public Accounting's (IPA) Annual Benchmarking Survey, coplete this order form and mail or fax it to the Platt Consulting Group.

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