Rothstein Kass

We Learned Some Interesting Things From This Interview with a Former Accounting Firm CFO

CFO published a couple of Q&As with Michael Barton, the CFO of global law firm Goodwin Procter this week and they provide an insider perspective on professional services firms that most of us never hear about. Prior to joining Goodwin, Barton was the CFO of Rothstein Kass for about two years; he turned down an offer […]

Another Rothstein Kass Refugee Has Fled the Land of KPMG

It's been a bit since we've covered the comings and goings of Rothstein Kass refugees making their way in the post-KPMG acquisition world. Some of them have broken off and formed their own offices. Others are undoubtedly sticking around. For 14 year RK veteran Matthew Anderson, it was Door #1: Fort Worth-based Weaver is expanding […]

Crumbs Bake Shop Just Fulfilled Auditor Rothstein Kass’ Going Concern Prophecy

Only a few short weeks ago (May 15, to be exact), Rothstein Kass expressed substantial doubt about Crumbs' ability to continue as a going concern in a 10-Q filed with the SEC for the quarter ended March 31, 2014: The accompanying condensed consolidated financial statements have been prepared in conformity with GAAP, which contemplates the […]

KPMG Congratulates KPMG On the Rothstein Kass Acquisition

Becoming number one in the hedge fund space wouldn't be an impressive achievement without a masturbatory press release celebrating it. KPMG delivers! KPMG LLP, the U.S. audit, tax and advisory firm, has completed its acquisition of certain assets of Rothstein Kass and the admission of most of the former Rothstein Kass principals and employees. The […]

Another Family Office Group Flees Rothstein Kass After the KPMG Acquisition

Do we have a trend here? Perhaps. The founders of JDJ Resources Corporation have left Rothstein Kass Family Office Group to launch JDJ Family Office Services. Boston-based JDJ Family Office Services, which provides administrative multi-family office and personal CFO services to high net worth individuals and families, will retain its entire 21-person staff and continue […]

Rothstein Kass Refugees Are Starting Fresh After the KPMG Acquisition

We heard a lot of chatter in the comment section after we first started reporting on KPMG acquiring Rothstein Kass, but one theme was pretty obvious: those who wanted to stay at RK were worried about the impact of a merger and wondering if they should leave now or wait it out. One Rothstein Kass […]

Steve Kass Insists He Meant It When He Said Rothstein Kass Wasn’t For Sale

When we first started hearing rumors of a Rothstein Kass KPMG merger in February, one of the items we were sent along with tips that an acquisition would be forthcoming was a letter from RK CEO Steve Kass that went out to staff in July of 2013. A highlight:

Oh Look, KPMG Is Acquiring Rothstein Kass

Well, what have we here? It's an article from the Journal's man on the accounting beat, Michael Rapoport: KPMG LLP is going long on the market for hedge-fund services. The New York accounting firm on Thursday agreed to buy Rothstein Kass, a New Jersey firm that caters to hedge funds and other alternative investment firms. As you […]

This One Chart Tells You Everything You Need to Know About a Rothstein Kass Acquisition

From the first moment the Rothstein Kass KPMG rumors started circling the bowl, it was pretty clear that RK's golden child is its hedge fund practice. Surely KPMG wasn't interested in the deal just so they could acquire Rothstein Kass' novelty cell phone stand named Trusty. Well, Audit Analytics put things in handy chart form […]

Rothstein Kass Resigned ‘Immediately’ From a SEC Client Due To ‘A Transaction’

We aren't saying this is something, but we aren't saying it's not anything either if you catch our drift. Our friends over at Audit Analytics noticed an 8-K filed Wednesday with the SEC for biometric security provider Ceelox, Inc that interestingly enough says RK is out as their auditor, like ASAP: Rothstein Kass informed the […]

This Guy Is Really Making the Most of Those Pesky Rothstein Kass/KPMG Merger Rumors

Sir, your blatant cunning is second only to that of the guys at these firms possibly working behind the scenes to make this deal happen. Names obscured to protect not the innocent but the shark circling the water for any cast-off RK talent.  

The Rothstein Kass/KPMG Merger Is Most Definitely On and Happening Soon, Says This

Hedge Fund Alert is subscription only so we don't have much but we do have this: After months of rumors, big-four accounting firm KPMG has reached an agreement to acquire Rothstein Kass — a deal that will make KPMG one of the top three hedge fund auditors. The deal could be announced within a week […]

According to This, a Bunch of Folks at Rothstein Kass Are Hitting the Pavement

Well, this is an interesting twist to the Rothstein Kass KPMG merger drama. We're glad to see our friends at Accounting Today getting on this: For the last few weeks the accounting profession’s rumor mill has been buzzing with stories that Rothstein Kass is about to be acquired by KPMG. Is this all just a […]

Why Is Everyone Chattering About KPMG Acquiring Rothstein Kass?

Over the weekend, we began hearing rumors of a KPMG/Rothstein Kass merger. Rather, a somewhat upset individual sent us this:

Just FYI, Rothstein Kass Is Now Powered By Trust (and a Cell Phone Stand)

Apparently Rothstein Kass is boldly going where every accounting firm has gone before, kicking off a new age with a new logo, a new philosophy and a new mascot. The firm-wide email makes its way into our tip box: Today marks a new chapter in our firm’s history, and I’m thrilled to share it with […]

Here’s Your Open Thread for Rothstein Kass, Crowe Horwath, BKD, Moss Adams et al. Comp Discussions (2013)

A year ago TODAY we did the et al. compensation thread for any and all accounting firms that typically fly below the radar, so it seems fitting that we would mark the occasion again on August 29th. Plus, someone at Rothstein Kass is practically begging us: Can you please open a compensation thread for Rothstein […]

Layoffs Watch ’13: Rothstein Kass

It's that time of year when public accounting firms start showing the underperformers the door and we have our first confirmed across the board cut at it has happened at Rothstein Kass. The first we heard of the layoffs was in mid-April when we were informed by an anonymous tip that the firm would be […]

(UPDATE) Going Concern March Madness 2012: Final Results and Debrief

~ Update below includes statement from Rothstein Kass Co-CEO and Co-Managing Principal, Steve Kass. After an exhaustive tournament, and a fair amount of comments that stated the obvious (i.e. there's no such thing as a cool accounting firm), we have a repeat champion in Rothstein Kass. Despite coming in as the defending champion, RK only […]

Going Concern March Madness 2012: This Town (i.e. Roseland, NJ) Isn’t Big Enough for Two Cool Firms

Last Friday, someone was hoping for a Rothstein Kass/J.H. Cohn Final in Going Concern March Madness for no other reason than to make things as awkward as possible in the elevator at 4 Becker Farm Road, Roseland, New Jersey: I am hoping for a JH Cohn vs Rothstein Kass final as they share an office […]

Going Concern March Madness 2012: Is There Anything Cool About These Final Four Firms?

After two rounds of intense competition to determine the coolest accounting firm, we have come down to the final four. The Usual Suspects are long gone and the remaining favorite, Grant Thornton, was tattooed in the second round.  So who are we left with? What firms are desperately hanging on to be accepted as, not […]

Awkward Sexual Advances And Your Drinking Problems – A Holiday Guide from Rothstein Kass

Hopefully this week is light for you and your cohorts, giving you some time to clean up your inboxes, hide frat party photos from your new Facebook Timeline, or finish up last minute holiday shopping. Here at GC we are already feeling the holiday hangover so luckily the email and “official” attachment below provided us with a good ol’ fashioned “WTF.”

Analysis: If Your Accounting Firm Was a College Football Team

Pack up your white pants and seersucker suits – Labor Day has come and gone which means only one (actually important) thing: college football is back. You NFL loving freaks can have your Sundays of Hollywood-produced sport; I believe the good Lord created Sundays solely as a recovery day for college football fans. Well, for that and drunk brunches, of course.

It is no secret that good ol’ Caleb is a vehement Husker fan,he only reason he’s given me the green light to churn out a post comparing your respective accounting firms to the likes of fried-butter-eating college football fanatics.

I can only pray that my effort will inspire the semi-regular infusion of sport, accounting, and bantering commenters around here, so I give you the “Accounting Firms If They Were A College Football Program” top nine rankings. Grab your body paint and come along for the tailgate.


Firm: Deloitte
Team: Oklahoma Sooners
First Take: Both are always in title contention but seem to shit the bed come Pay Day. Deloitte raises are on par with the Sooners’ BCS bowl record under Coach Bob Stoops (2-8).
Keep it in the Family: During Hurricane Irene, Deloitte encouraged employees to bunk up together, obviously a practice long in use in Oklahoma.
Sputter, Sputter: Sooner alum Blake Griffin jumped over a KIA at last year’s NBA slam dunk contest. A certain Deloitte consultant also prefers a certain overused and washed out mode of transportation…

Firm: PwC
Team: Oregon Ducks
First Take: They’re in the news for legit (raises, hurry-up offense) and controversial (fireside chats, BCS infractions) more often than you’d like. Also, their team colors are atrocious.
Hotties Everywhere: PDubs has Ireland. The Ducks have these ladies.
Just Pick One Already: PwC doesn’t churn out new logo/uniform re-designs as often as the Ducks but both cause a stir when they do. Whether the changes for either team result in better winnings has yet to be seen.

Firm: Ernst & Young
Team: Ohio State Buckeyes
First Take: You hate going up against them, but even if they do win, you’re thankful you’re not affiliated with their alumni.
Compliance? What Compliance? Former coach Jim Tressell thought it best to let a tattoos-for-autographs program run its course. E&Y is apparently doing the same with this minor Sino-Forest sitch.
Questionable Mascots: The poisonous nuts of the Midwest are no match for the Black & Yellow guy.

Firm: KPMG
Team: Notre Dame Fighting Irish
First Take: Still talking about that big win in 1983. An exodus of leadership. The general public has gone from loathing them to just feeling bad for them. Give it up, you’re no longer the powerhouse you (thought you) once were.
Johnny Be Good. The Chairman is also a proud ND alum. Need we say more?
Empty Promises: We’re going to win it all! We’re going to hire thousands!

Firm: Grant Thornton
Team: Northwestern Wildcats
First Take: As hard you they try to be tough, they’re still nerds dressed in purple.
Off-the-Mark Advertising: GT – the lack of aligned teeth took some bite out of your full-page WSJ ad. And Dan Persa for Heisman – really? Your mom for Heisman.

Firm: Rothstein Kass
Team: Boise State Broncos
First Take: First it was a feel-good story but their continued rise through the ranks is pissing off the traditionalists.
The-Anybody-But-The-Other-Guy- Vote: Whether it was Boise’s ridiculously fantastic win over Oklahoma years ago in the Fiesta Bowl or RK’s dominance in the Going Concern March Madness pool, oftentimes their fan support stemmed from us just hating their competition more.

Firm: McGladrey
Team: Missouri Tigers
Only Take: You’re supposed to be on this list; we know you belong on this list; we don’t know what you’ve done to deserve being on this list.

Firm: BDO
Team: Penn State Nittany Lions
First Take: Your parents would have been pleased if you went there but better options awaited you.
Race to the Retirement Home: JoePa is 84 and coaching from the press box. Rumor has it Jack Weisbaum calls the shots from his personal tanning bed.

Firm: CBIZ/Mayer Hoffman McCann
Team: University Buffalo Bulls
Only Take: You think you’re a big deal, but really everyone uses you as an exhibition punching bag.

How’d we do? What team best parodies your firm? Share it in the comments below.

And the Coolest Accounting Firm Is…

After four rounds of bracket magic including a back and forth championship match-up, we have our very first winner of the Going Concern March Madness: Coolest Accounting Firm competition. Let’s look at the final bracket.


For those of you that haven’t been refreshing the page for the last 48+ hours, Rothstein Kass pulled their final upset, this time of West Coast rival Moss Adams. Along the way RK dismantled the biggest of the Big 4, Deloitte, McGladrey and BDO.

You may think that such a run of upsets was the result of the double-entry stars perfectly aligning themselves but RK Co-CEO and Managing Principal Steve Kass explained it differently, “Many will look at results and call Rothstein Kass a ‘Cinderella story,’ or characterize our victory as an upset. Though we embraced the underdog role, we knew that our low seeding was more likely a function of strength of schedule. The fierce competition we encountered during the season prepared us for the rigors of the tournament, while quality of our recent recruiting classes left us confident that we could make a run at the title,” Mr. Kass said. “As thrilled as we are by our success, however, there will be no champagne sprayed in locker room celebrations, nor ticker tape parades through the halls of our offices. Over the years, we’ve observed that the more time you spend reflecting on how cool you are, the less time you have free to do cool things. Notwithstanding, winning was pretty cool!”

So it sounds like it’s back to business as usual for RK. Undoubtedly, this victory will catapult them up Vault’s prestige rankings making for a much more difficult tournament next year but for now they get to enjoy the spoils of a champion (which, in this case, is nothing – our publisher wouldn’t spring for a trophy but he’d love to hear from you about it). So congrats to Rothstein Kass on a great run and to the rest of the firms out there – get better.

Oh, and anyone expecting a “One Shining Moment” montage needs to slap themselves across the face right now. And then again.

Going Concern March Madness: Moss Adams, Rothstein Kass Battle for the Title of the Coolest Accounting Firm

Well, we’ve finally reached the championship match-up and it’s a battle of the coasts. , NJ-based Rothstein Kass will take on Seattle-based Moss Adams for what will no doubt be the crowning achievement for either firm’s busy season. Moss Adams disposed of their rumored dancing partner Grant Thornton while Rothstein dismantled McGladrey. Rehash over; let’s get to the bracket.


Will Rothstein be the ultimate Cinderella? Will Moss spoil the ball? Will Reznick Group mount a firm-wide attack on MA just out of spite? WTFK? But vote so we can wrap this up. If I have to look at another bracket in next 365 days it will be too soon. Poll is open until FRIDAY at 11:59 PT.

Going Concern March Madness: The Coolest Accounting Firm – The Final 4 Sans Big 4

Now that we’ve reached the Final 4 without any Big 4 firms (all bounced in the first round), some of you may have lost interest in Going Concern March Madness: Coolest Accounting Firm. Well, that would make you a loser and anyway, we must press on! Face it, you’ll go for anything to distract you from the fact that you’re stuck inside whispering sweet nothings to Microsoft Excel while spring is slowly emerging outside. And it’s a pretty compelling Final Four anyway. Let’s take a look shall we?


So you’ll notice that we have the very interesting match-up between Moss Adams and Grant Thornton, the two firms that have subject of merger rumors (unfounded!) since January. Obviously the winner here will enjoy the upper hand in any future negotiations between the two firms, so anyone from either firm wishing to upset the leverage here would be wise to take a page from the Reznick Group strategy book.

Speaking of Reznick, we briefly mentioned the fact that their first round magic was nowhere to be found in round two. A tipster filled us in as to why:

I think the higher-ups were embarrassed by the public calling out and subsequent mockery in the comments, not a single other email went out about it – reminders about the competition or the beatdown they suffered at the hands of the commenters 🙂 Serious loss of billable hours that day too, everyone kept checking the site all day long for more comments, emailing and IMing each other about it.

So make a mental note – if your firm’s leadership has a thin skin and isn’t down with wasting a number of billable hours, the Reznick strategy may not be the way to go after all.

Moving on to the second match-up we have the perennial dark horse Rothstein Kass against McGladrey. Rothstein continues their hot streak in GCMMTCAF after their impressive performance in this year’s Vault rankings and McGladrey is…well, we’re pretty surprised to see McGladrey in the semi-finals, to be honest. Perhaps there are sweet incentives being offered internally but right now we haven’t been made aware of any such temptations. Anyway, McG has quietly made a run, so it makes for a decent showdown.

All right, enough with pleasantries. Let’s get to the voting. Polls close tomorrow night at 11:59 PT.

First up – GranMA

Cinderella vs. Mickey G’s.

Going Concern March Madness Update: Reznick’s Magic is MIA; Grant Thornton, BDO on the Ropes

Look gang, since too many of you are distracted with doing billable work to email us anything half way interesting, I’m guess I’ll just update you on the progress in Round 2.


The two highest remaining seeds – Grant Thornton and BDO – are looking defeat square in the face right now to their respective opponents – Crowe Horwath and Rothstein Kass. First round comeback kid Reznick Group is currently getting worked by Moss Adams which makes should make us all wonder what happened to the teamwork we saw in the first round. Perhaps they’re a one-trick pony?

Finally, in the least talked about match-up, Mickey G’s and Dennis Rader’s favorite firm (ideas for something better are welcome) look like they’ll be taking it down to the wire. There’s just over thirteen hours left to vote, so get the word out sooner rather than later (sorry Clifton Gunderson).

What’s With All the Hating on Rothstein Kass?

Welcome to the post-marathon Monday edition of Accounting Career Couch. Today, an experienced industry accountant is looking to go jump into public and has an interview with Rothstein Kass’s Family Office group. Unfortunately, he has heard horror stories about R to the K’s financial services division and wants to know if it’s contagious to the rest of the firm.

Having problems at work and need a sage’s advice? Curious if using a sick day for your missing toenails is ethical? In a bit of trouble with the law and need an excuse that makes your better half look like a lunatic? ”mailto:advice@goingconcern.com”>advice@goingconcern.com and we’ll put your mind (or feet) at ease.

Back to our potential Kass Kounter:

My question is if you’ve received any recent news about Rothstein Kass lately. I’m up for an interview in their Family Office group as an entry level tax staff, but let’s face it – they haven’t had the best things said about them over their other divisions. Fortunately I’ve heard nothing about the FO group; everything sad/horrible/depressing has been about their FS division, for the most part.

I want to make sure I do my due diligence of this firm, first. A few years ago I was offered to start my career in accounting there under a summer internship in their audit group, but I turned it down for corporate opportunities instead. Now as I want to make the jump into public for the first time, I’m naturally looking back at RKCO…

Any idea as to why everyone seems to have only negative things to say about them? Whiners are always the loudest, I’m aware, but it does concern me a little that there’s so much taint over this firm’s internal reputation on the interwebs…

To directly answer the question, the most recent news we’ve received about Rothstein Kass was related to their ubiquity on the Vault rankings including landing at the #3 spot on their featured ranking.

Prior to the rankings, we reported on a few pre-Labor Day layoffs that occurred at the firm and the admission of new partners to the firm for 2010.

In the layoffs post, our tipster mentioned the following:

FS practice is getting demolished in NY and NJ appears to be getting more antsy with every move that management makes.

Not many details on “demolished,” as you can see but someone thought enough havoc was going down to contact us. However, another source told us that the context of the tip was not accurate and that things within the firm were fine. What other Kass Kounters actually think is unknown because the post had a grand total of zero comments and RK declined to comment for our article.

So, the long/short of it is – RK has a very good reputation by virtue of their lofty perch among the Vault Rankings but it appears the reputation in some corners of “the interwebs” might be “tainted” as you say. We haven’t seen any of this tainting first-hand so we don’t know why RK is getting a bad rap.

To help you with your particular dilemma – if you were interviewing with Deloitte or PwC (the only two firms that ranked above RK on Vault’s list) would you be concerned about what was said about them on the web? If your answer is no, then you should have the same attitude about Rothstein. If you answer is yes, then you’ll never get a job anywhere, ever.

People in the know are invited to enlighten everyone below. If you’d rather communicate with us directly, email us at tips@goingconcern.com.

Layoff Watch ’10: Rothstein Kass Making Pre-Labor Day Cuts

From the mailbag:

Thought you’d be interested in hearing that today RK had a few last minute “transitions” or as most know them “lay offs”, these happened in the FS practice in New Jersey about 6 weeks after the official “transition date” in which upper management stated that the “transitions” were over for the year and everyone was safe and could get back to work and not worry. Today we lost 1 supervisor, 1 pending manager and 1 manager all having started their careers home grown at the firm.

Performance reasons were quoted but no one seemed to have a clue it was coming and a pretty big bummer day. Rumor has it that it’s not yet over as some others were not in the office today, doesn’t help the extremely negative morale issue going on at this firm with doom and gloom expectations of raises coming post labor day.

Would love to see some more RK news hit the site from time to time if you get it, not really sure where the firm is heading, up or down and would be great to see what others think??? FS practice is getting demolished in NY and NJ appears to be getting more antsy with every move that management makes.

A voicemail and email to Rothstein Kass spokesman Robert Solomon were not immediately returned.

If you’ve got more info on cuts or other news at RK, get in touch.

Promotion Watch ’10: Rothstein Kass Names Four New Principals

Jeff Kollin, Camille Asaro, Frank Attalla and Navin Sethi come on down!


Asaro and Kollin rep the New York office, Attalla in Roseland, NJ and Sethi gets the nod in San Fran.

Ms. Asaro and Mr. Attalla are members of the Rothstein Kass Financial Services Group. Mr. Sethi, a tax Principal is a member of both the Financial Services Group and the firm’s Commercial Services Group. Mr. Kollin has been named Principal and Head of the Financial Services Advisory practice within Rothstein Kass Business Advisory Services, LLC, a Rothstein Kass affiliate. Rothstein Kass simultaneously announced the promotion of Rich Sumida to Senior Director at Rothstein Kass.

Son of the Kass (presumably, the firm is 50-ish) takes the mic:

“The collaborative culture at Rothstein Kass has ensured that our professionals are able to continually enhance their skills and expertise throughout their careers. Our ‘one-firm, one-floor,’ philosophy remains a cornerstone for our success. Staff at all organizational levels gain invaluable experience working side-by-side with seasoned industry veterans in support of our clients. The companies we serve, in turn, benefit from the continuity, proficiency and knowledge that result from our ability to hire and retain superior talent across practice areas and office locations,” said Steven A. Kass, Co-CEO and Co-Managing Principal of Rothstein Kass. “Camille, Frank, Navin and Jeff are engaged, insightful and dedicated members of the Rothstein Kass team, and have demonstrated exceptional leadership qualities during their time with our firm. On behalf of our entire organization, we would like to congratulate our new Principals on their achievements and thank them for their contributions to our success.”

Not much to add here other than 1) congrats to the new RK principals and 2) the “one-firm, one-floor philosophy” could have really helped a certain Crowe Horwath partner.