HS Companies Expanding Into GR

February 14, 2005
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FREMONT — H&S Companies is opening a Grand Rapids office in mid-February — its fifth in West Michigan — and plans to make Grand Rapids its new headquarters at some point.

“As far as our strategic plan, that would happen somewhere down the road. There’s no timeline for the transfer of everything,” said Jack Hendon, a founding member of the firm. He said he and his three partners anticipate a lot of growth opportunities locally.

“Because we’ve been around for about 20 years, we’ve always had a lot of clients in Grand Rapids, so it’s kind of a natural move for us to service those clients better and try to expand our business.”

H&S Companies will move into 1,500 square feet of leased office space at 2025 East Beltline and initially open for business with a staff of three, he said. H&S Companies is a three-in-one company that includes Hendon & Slate PC, CPA and Consultants; H&S Computers; and H&S Financial.

Hendon estimates the accounting end of the business represents close to 80 percent of the firm’s overall business, with the balance of it split between the financial and computer divisions.

In addition to its current headquarters in Fremont, the firm has offices in Muskegon, Whitehall and Hart.

NaLee Park has been selected to head up the Grand Rapids office.

Park, who will specialize in tax law, has a master’s of law degree in taxation from New York University, a law degree from the University of Wisconsin and a B.A. degree from the University of Michigan. Her earlier experience includes working in Thailand in the area of international taxation for multi-national U.S. corporations. She has been involved in individual income tax preparation since 1999 and has written professionally on corporate tax shelter regulations.

Hendon and Dan Slate established Hendon & Slate PC, CPA and Consultants in November 1983. John Korstange came on board as a partner in January 1991, and Ward Van Dam joined the partnership in August 1999.

In 1998, in response to clients’ requests for help in the area of technology, the partners formed a division called H&S Computers and put together a technical support team to address clients’ hardware, software and network issues.

A year later, they established H&S Financial to offer clients financial, investment and retirement planning services, as well. They renamed the firm H&S Companies at that time and brought all three entities under the same banner.

Computer and financial services just went hand in hand with the nature of their accounting business, Hendon recalled. In both those areas, the firm started out primarily servicing its clients and eventually expanded from there, he said.

“We’ve always recommended financial planning to our clients and now we’re able to offer them the products, too. Now we can actually design their pension plan and fund it for them.”

H&S Companies currently has 30 employees — 12 of them CPAs — that serve more than 4,000 clients in West Michigan.    

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