Beene Garter merges with GR business

September 5, 2009
| By Pete Daly |
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Beene Garter LLP, one of the region's largest independently owned accounting and consulting firms, has merged with Grand Rapids-based Barrons State Tax Consulting to establish a Multi-State Tax Group within Beene Garter.

The two principals of the former Barrons firm, owner David Barrons and Michael Lewakowski, have joined Beene Garter at the firm's downtown Grand Rapids location. The merger brings the Beene Garter employee roster to a total of 16 partners and 65 staff.

Barrons joins the firm as partner-in-charge of the new Multi-State Tax Group, and Lewakowski will serve as the department's senior tax manager.

"Adding David and Michael strengthens not only our emerging state and local tax practice, but also allows Beene Garter to excel in new areas such as audit and controversy assistance," said Beene Garter Managing Partner Tom Rosenbach. The new practice group will focus on tax laws in multiple states, as well as business structuring, nexus services and transaction tax analysis.

All of the Barrons clients are expected to move to Beene Garter, according to the announcement from Beene Garter.

"Our relationships will remain the same with our clients," said Barrons, "but now we have a deeper knowledge pool to draw from to provide greater value to our clients."

He said joining Beene Garter "made sense" because "the firm has solid brand recognition, access to international resources with the Moore Stephens network, and cutting-edge technological resources."

Beene Garter is a member firm associated with Moore Stephens North America and Moore Stephens International Limited, a global accounting and consulting organization headquartered in London.

Barrons State Tax Consulting specialized in serving middle-market companies, predominantly in the area of state income, franchise and transaction-based taxes.

David Barrons' expertise is multi-state oriented and also includes cross-border issues as they relate to state taxes. Prior to starting Barrons State Tax Consulting in 2006, he was a tax partner with BDO Seidman LLP from 1998 to 2005.

Lewakowski has 25 years of multi-state tax expertise in both public accounting and corporate finance. He has extensive experience with state tax methodology including apportionment theory and state/federal tax differences.

Beene Garter, founded in Grand Rapids in 1949, also provides audit, tax and advisory services, employer support services, and wealth management services through its subsidiary, BG Investment Advisory Services Inc.

Beene Garter advisers specialize in particular industries such as construction, manufacturing, health care, real estate, wholesale/distribution and nonprofit organizations.

Beene Garter merged with Deem, Huizing & Associates in late 2007, which added seven to the Beene Garter staff at that time.

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