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12
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Mark:
Joe, what lies ahead?
Joe:
This year BlumShapiro is going to push
through the $76 million mark. We're
going to keep growing, but with con-
trolled, profitable growth, anticipating
what's coming over the hill, finding
the investment dollars, and rallying the
troops around that growth. That's the
challenge of my term.
Mark:
David, what have you been doing
since stepping down?
David:
I helped integrate our expansion into
southern Connecticut, into Fairfield
County. I spent a lot of time down in
Southport and then Shelton as we
moved into that market, getting to
know the business community even
deeper into Stamford, and I helped in-
tegrate the practice until we identified
internal leaders who could take over
that practice area ... and I've contin-
ued to encourage our clients them-
selves to turn an eye toward succes-
sion planning.
Mark:
What do enjoy the most about the
managing partner role? Least?
Joe:
I love working with our people every
day, whether they're having a good
day or a bad day ... but some of the
administrative stuff, the things that
keep you behind your desk, I like least.
David:
Most? Meeting with clients, especially
ones I was not involved with, to listen
to them. It's really helped us formulate
where we need to be.
Carl:
For me, when we really got into the
merger and acquisition area, that was
what I loved, going through that pro-
cess, meeting different firms obvi-
ously, for every firm with whom we
merged, we probably met three other
firms with whom we didn't.
I enjoyed that whole process, meet-
ing them, going through the whole
educating of our partner group about
the possibilities, telling the new firm
about what Blum could bring to the
table for them, then working up the
deal and negotiating the deal with two
or three different groups ... and after
that the integration ... I enjoyed that,
too, because you get to know a differ-
ent group of people ... and then as Joe
mentioned, there's the stuff you don't
like so much.
Mark:
You're acquiring other firms, but you
may also be an attractive "target"
for even larger firms. What if some-
one slid a piece of paper across the
table with the right number on it?
Joe:
We plan on remaining independent at
this point in time. The firm is focused
on organic growth and maintaining our
number one accounting firm ranking in
New England. We are presented with
upward merger opportunities on a reg-
ular basis and believe, as an executive
team, we have the obligation to listen
to each opportunity, but, once again, it
is not our intent to merge at this time.
Mark:
For many firms, their succession
plan is simply to be acquired. What
advice would you offer to be "attrac-
tive to a suitor"?
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(continued)