PCPS Member Since: 1978
Firm Size: Large
Location: Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, Ohio and the Cayman Islands
Handy PCPS Tools We Use
Decosimo specifically uses the toolkits which provide information on new standards. “We like the detailed analyses and explanations,” says managing principal Nick Decosimo. “It’s helpful to have guidance on new standards that is reliable and that we can adapt for our own purposes.”
Decosimo is a large regional accounting firm that provides clients with a broad range of technical expertise in virtually all industries. However, despite its range of services, the firm has established a transaction advisory service that performs due diligence for buyers of companies in a number of industries. Some of the most interesting work has been in the acquisition of Major League Baseball teams. It has been involved in the purchase of the San Diego Padres, the Cincinnati Reds, the St. Louis Cardinals, the Baltimore Orioles and the Texas Rangers. The Cardinals currently remain a client. “It actually all started with George Bush,” says Decosimo. “A client of ours merged with his oil and gas company and we worked with him through this, as well as performing due diligence in the acquisition of the Rangers.” The client who merged in Bush’s oil and gas company was also interested in baseball teams, so the firm helped in a deal which led him to be a minority owner of the Orioles. Ultimately, the firm began working with other clients who acquired the Padres, Orioles and Cardinals. Since the firm has an office in Cincinnati and had built contacts in this niche, it was called in to help the current owners acquire the Reds.
When the firm does due diligence in an acquisition, “we kick the financial tires, looking for things that might affect the price in our client’s favor,” Decosimo says. “We have been performing that same service in other industries for a long time. In fact, our people have traveled all across the country, from Alaska to Florida, doing these engagements. The work is quite different in our Cayman Island office, where we work with hundreds of investment partnerships.” The firm once did due diligence for a client and the information it found ended up killing the deal. “We figured we would never hear from them again, but they were the buyers and they recognized they would have suffered if we hadn’t uncovered the deal’s pitfalls,” he says. “They appreciated the fact that we had stopped them from making a bad investment. We’ve been called in to help on eight of their deals in the past year and they’ve turned into a great client.”
Not too surprisingly, much of the firm’s downtime revolves around baseball, including outings to games at local baseball parks. Firm members were even invited to attend games when the Cardinals were in the World Series. “It’s a theme that runs through all our locations,” Decosimo says.
In addition to the firm’s baseball niche, it also has an entertainment practice in Nashville that essentially serves as a family office for country singers. “These singers are always on the road, so we might do everything from tax work and financial planning to accommodating a request to purchase a car for them, complete the paperwork, and park it in their driveway.” On another front, Decosimo’s brother co-heads the advisory services practice and handles litigation services in divorce cases that involve millions of dollars in assets and complicated valuations. “All of these niches are relatively small worlds, so if you do a good job and help your client get a good result, they will be loyal and tell their friends.”