Accounting firm closing Richmond office, former employees to start anew

Elliott Davis's Richmond offices have views of the city and the James River.

Elliott Davis’s Richmond offices have views of the city and the James River.

A regional accounting firm plans to wind down operations of its local office in the coming months.

Elliott Davis Decosimo, a Greenville, South Carolina-based firm that entered the local market in 2012, will end its physical presence in the area later this summer, the firm confirmed this week. Liz Kalooky, Elliott Davis Decosimo’s executive for practice growth, said some Richmond-based employees will work through the summer at the firm’s Riverfront Plaza office.

“Part of it’s just a refocus for us on a strategic level,” Kalooky said of the decision to close in Richmond.

The firm built up its Richmond office to 30 people at its peak and grew locally via acquisition when it absorbed two Richmond firms, Valderas & Fishel and VanHuss & Associates, in 2013. Known at the time as Elliott Davis, the company announced plans to merge with Chattanooga, Tennessee-based Decosimo in October 2014. The merger, completed Jan. 1, 2015, gave the combined company 17 offices across the Southeast, Ohio and the Cayman Islands.

Elliott Davis showed off its new downtown office a couple years ago with a large gathering.

Elliott Davis showed off its new downtown office a couple years ago with a large gathering.

The firm’s office on the 10th floor of Riverfront Plaza’s west tower is its only one in the Commonwealth. The firm previously leased 4,000 square feet at 3990 Westerre Parkway when it opened in Richmond in 2012.

Despite the closure, Elliott Davis Decosimo will continue to solicit and serve clients in the Commonwealth.

The firm said in a prepared statement that its realignment strategy calls for serving only Richmond dental and banking clients after the office closure. Kalooky said those and its other Virginia clients will be divvied up among the firm’s other offices, which include locations in Raleigh, North Carolina; Knoxville, Tennessee; and Atlanta.

“We had clients before we arrived and will continue to serve clients in Virginia,” Kalooky said.

Minus the Richmond office, Elliott Davis Decosimo has outposts in five states and employs more than 800 people.

While Elliott Davis Decosimo is closing its office here, the Richmond area will experience no net change of accounting firms. That’s because Kim Van Huss, formerly of the aforementioned VanHuss & Associates, and Bill Berry are going out on their own.

“The firm will sell a portion of its business to Bill Berry and Kim Van Huss, existing Elliott Davis Decosimo shareholders, who will be opening a new public accounting practice to serve many of Elliott Davis Decosimo’s current clients,” the firm’s statement said. “This new practice will open for business on July 1, 2016.”

As for its downtown office space, Elliott Davis is two years into a 12-year lease at Riverfront Plaza.

Broker David Wilkins of CBRE, which handles leasing for Riverfront Plaza, said his company is aware of Elliott Davis’ departure but that neither party had yet lined up a replacement tenant. Wilkins indicated the lease will continue and referred additional questions to Elliott Davis.

Elliott Davis's Richmond offices have views of the city and the James River.

Elliott Davis’s Richmond offices have views of the city and the James River.

A regional accounting firm plans to wind down operations of its local office in the coming months.

Elliott Davis Decosimo, a Greenville, South Carolina-based firm that entered the local market in 2012, will end its physical presence in the area later this summer, the firm confirmed this week. Liz Kalooky, Elliott Davis Decosimo’s executive for practice growth, said some Richmond-based employees will work through the summer at the firm’s Riverfront Plaza office.

“Part of it’s just a refocus for us on a strategic level,” Kalooky said of the decision to close in Richmond.

The firm built up its Richmond office to 30 people at its peak and grew locally via acquisition when it absorbed two Richmond firms, Valderas & Fishel and VanHuss & Associates, in 2013. Known at the time as Elliott Davis, the company announced plans to merge with Chattanooga, Tennessee-based Decosimo in October 2014. The merger, completed Jan. 1, 2015, gave the combined company 17 offices across the Southeast, Ohio and the Cayman Islands.

Elliott Davis showed off its new downtown office a couple years ago with a large gathering.

Elliott Davis showed off its new downtown office a couple years ago with a large gathering.

The firm’s office on the 10th floor of Riverfront Plaza’s west tower is its only one in the Commonwealth. The firm previously leased 4,000 square feet at 3990 Westerre Parkway when it opened in Richmond in 2012.

Despite the closure, Elliott Davis Decosimo will continue to solicit and serve clients in the Commonwealth.

The firm said in a prepared statement that its realignment strategy calls for serving only Richmond dental and banking clients after the office closure. Kalooky said those and its other Virginia clients will be divvied up among the firm’s other offices, which include locations in Raleigh, North Carolina; Knoxville, Tennessee; and Atlanta.

“We had clients before we arrived and will continue to serve clients in Virginia,” Kalooky said.

Minus the Richmond office, Elliott Davis Decosimo has outposts in five states and employs more than 800 people.

While Elliott Davis Decosimo is closing its office here, the Richmond area will experience no net change of accounting firms. That’s because Kim Van Huss, formerly of the aforementioned VanHuss & Associates, and Bill Berry are going out on their own.

“The firm will sell a portion of its business to Bill Berry and Kim Van Huss, existing Elliott Davis Decosimo shareholders, who will be opening a new public accounting practice to serve many of Elliott Davis Decosimo’s current clients,” the firm’s statement said. “This new practice will open for business on July 1, 2016.”

As for its downtown office space, Elliott Davis is two years into a 12-year lease at Riverfront Plaza.

Broker David Wilkins of CBRE, which handles leasing for Riverfront Plaza, said his company is aware of Elliott Davis’ departure but that neither party had yet lined up a replacement tenant. Wilkins indicated the lease will continue and referred additional questions to Elliott Davis.

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Dave Tindall
Dave Tindall
6 years ago

Bill – best of luck in your new venture!

Lynn Spinner
Lynn Spinner
5 years ago

Good luck Bill!