Public companies face complex accounting and reporting requirements—leading most to seek a reliable CPA firm that can bring the expertise needed to navigate challenges experienced by SEC registrants. Although large national firms can seem like the safe choice, your company can easily become lost in these firms’ massive SEC practices, leaving you feeling insignificant.
At Wolf & Company, our team of specialist’s aggregate expertise across many industries and services, meaning all of your questions can be answered in one place. Wolf also offers direct leadership involvement, so you can rest assured that you are working with top-tier advisors.
Take a look at a few examples of how Wolf was able to relieve the pain points of public companies by providing exceptional assurance services.
1. Don’t Get Sent to National Office Jail
Client’s longtime Big 4 CPA firm suddenly took a different view on their longstanding revenue recognition policy. The issue immediately went to the Big 4’s dreaded “National Office.” Suddenly, both the communication with the client and the progress on the audit ground to a halt. Furthermore, critical filing deadlines were missed, consultants had to be engaged, and major audit fee overages were incurred.
Client’s CFO was now in the hot seat with the rest of the management team, the board of directors, and the SEC. They needed a CPA firm that had the expertise to handle the accounting complexities of their business and could make confident decisions quickly. They also needed a CPA firm that would keep an open and honest line of communication in order to resolve issues in a timely manner.
Wolf was engaged by Client and was able to complete three interim reviews and an audit within 90 days, bringing the company current in their filings. The Wolf difference is that your engagement officers are easily accessible decision makers—there’s no National Office. As the largest Massachusetts-based CPA firm with over 250 professionals, we have a deep pool of industry experts that you and your finance team can utilize at any time. Furthermore, when our engagement officer and a CFO agree on an issue, that decision is final. There’s no second guessing, no National Office, and no National Office jail!
At Wolf, all final decisions are made locally.
2. The Answers You Need, When You Need Them
A new pharmaceutical company operating in the US and EU entered into a conversation with a major investor in Asia, discussing a potential collaboration agreement that included significant funds inflow and distribution rights to the Chinese market.
These funds were needed by the business to expand its sales, distribution channels, and overall distribution globally. The initial discussion started in December, and by January, the parties involved decided to move forward with a closing date of early April. This meant that the Company had to compile all the information needed (including the audit findings of the fiscal year that had just ended) by the end of February instead of by the end of June, when the information would normally be required.
Wolf worked diligently to assist the company in this major transaction. We managed our schedule to ensure prompt responses to Client’s needs, set up an accelerated timeline, and successfully delivered the audit and facilitated the due diligence process within the time allotted. At first, preparation for the due diligence in such a short period of time was thought to be an impossible task. But thanks in part to Wolf’s readiness strategies, Wolf’s client completed the due diligence, signed the collaboration agreement, and received the funds.
The company is now focusing on building a successful, global pharmaceutical enterprise due to Wolf’s consistent focus on our client’s need to help them stay ahead of the rapidly changing environment.
3. One Size Doesn’t Fit All
Client’s CPA firm (a Top 10 firm) executed an audit that appeared to be designed for a Fortune 500 company, and had an expensive price tag to go with it. The audit was exhausting, tying up Client’s resources and resulting in decreased focus on the most important matters—current operations. The CPA firm was focused on all the wrong items and spending countless resources on matters that should have been addressed through discussions with decision makers. Meanwhile, the bill kept growing. By the time the audit ended, Client felt defeated, as if the audit was a ‘survival of the fittest’ rather than a coordinated and collaborative approach. On top of that, the CPA firm provided little value-added feedback, worrying more about its stringent approach and less about Client.
Client wanted to work with a reputable, experienced firm without the exhausting service strategy and expensive price tag. Client was projected for growth and wanted to ensure they worked with a firm that could grow with them.
Wolf was engaged by Client and was able to execute a customized audit approach, one that addressed the identified risks and provided Client with access to Wolf’s decision makers. The first year audit was completed efficiently and effectively—on time and on budget.
Wolf is a high-quality, cost-effective alternative to the national firms.
4. I Pity the Fool Who Doesn’t Get the A-Team
Client went through an initial CPA firm selection process and chose a large national firm. Both the firm’s assigned partner and manager had years of experience in Client’s industry, and had many similar clients. But the team that showed up to actually conduct the audit had no experience in the industry, and didn’t understand Client’s specific issues.
The Client’s accounting team found themselves being asked how convertible debt worked, what “SaaS” meant, and why in-process R&D was on the balance sheet. And when the work actually began, the audit process was glacially slow. In trying to track down the audit manager, Client’s CFO discovered that they had left the firm, and that a brand new manager had been assigned. The partner, meanwhile, was nowhere to be found.
Client’s CFO was now not only worried about getting their 10-K filed on time, but also the unnecessary ‘wear and tear’ on their accounting team. The CFO believed they were making the safe choice by going with a large national firm, but soon realized that being a small fish in a big pond wasn’t the right place for them.
Wolf was engaged after the filing of the 10-K, and immediately had the assigned audit partner and manager deeply involved with the Client’s engagements. Client’s CFO knew from the outset that she could pick up the phone and get in touch with either of them quickly. Even better, she knew she didn’t have to worry about being told “sorry, we can’t help,” or being hit with surprise bills.
In addition, Wolf’s entire audit team understood the important industry issues, as well as the specific recent developments in Client’s business before they got into the field. This made the audit go much smoother, and made the Client’s accounting team very happy.
At Wolf, all of our clients get the A-Team.