M&A roundup: Wiss, High Rock and ATA expand



Details: Alexander Thompson Arnold PLLC, also known as ATA CPAs, a firm based in Edison, New Jersey, has expanded to Arkansas by acquiring JWCK Ltd., formerly known as Jordan, Woosley, Crone & Keaton, Ltd., a firm in Hot Springs, effective Jan. 1, 2022.

The merger adds 14 professionals to the ATA team, including three principals and two partners, Christina Ellis and Courtney Moore. ATA and 28 partners and 177 staff. After the merger, the combined firm will have a total of 220 employees and 15 locations across four states.

“ATA has had a long-standing interest in establishing a strong presence in Arkansas,” said ATA managing partner John Whybrew in a statement Tuesday. “We believe that this strategic merger with JWCK allows the firm to grow in new markets with like-minded professionals as well as continue our multi-year growth plan.”

ATA earned $32 million in annual revenue, while JWCK had $2.5 million in annual revenue.

JWCK has offered tax management and accounting services for approximately 60 years, along with auditing, financial statements and financial planning. The firm ranks 14th on the Arkansas Business Publishing Group’s list of the largest accounting firms in the state. The firm has been named Best Accounting Firm in Hot Springs by The Sentinel Record for two years in a row, and Ellis was named Best Accountant in Hot Springs for the past two years.

“Our commitment to serve our community with professionals right here in Hot Springs has led JWCK to merge with ATA,” Ellis said in a statement. “Through this merger, we will be able to provide our community with expertise in subject matters beyond what we have in our local office and will be able to devote more time to client relationships by allowing ATA’s entities to handle administrative responsibilities.”

ATA Hot Springs will operate at its current offices until May 2022 when it will move into a newly constructed space.

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