Business

Kaufman Rossin sells funds services business for $95 million

Jim Kaufman, founding partner of accounting firm Kaufman Rossin, is shown at his Coconut Grove office in a file photo from 2012.
Jim Kaufman, founding partner of accounting firm Kaufman Rossin, is shown at his Coconut Grove office in a file photo from 2012. MIAMI HERALD STAFF

Miami-based accounting firm Kaufman Rossin struck a deal to sell its independent funds services business for $95 million Thursday — and a “significant amount” of that fee will be distributed to the company’s employees, managing partner Blain Heckaman said.

Kaufman Rossin Fund Services provides administrative, accounting and other services to hedge funds and institutional investors, including helping the funds calculate the true values of their assets. It is a separate corporate entity from the accounting firm.

The fund services company, founded in 1994, has about 125 workers and $26 million in annual revenue, according to a federal regulatory filing. (The accounting firm was established in 1962 and employs about 325 people.)

The buyer is financial services company ALPS, a subsidiary of Kansas City-based DST Systems.

The companies expect the deal to close in the first quarter of 2016.

Heckaman said Kaufman Rossin made the decision to give some of the $95 million back to its 450 workers because of the firm’s “employee-first” culture.

“These are the people who helped build up the value,” Heckaman said.

The size of each employee’s bonus will depend on how long they’ve worked for Kaufman Rossin and their contributions to the success of the funds services business, he said. The exact amounts will be worked out before closing.

The rest of the money will be reinvested into the accounting firm, its core business.

Kaufman Rossin decided to sell in part because of changes in the hedge fund industry.

“It is a significant time of mergers and acquisition,” Heckaman said. “You’re seeing larger and larger hedge funds now and fewer of the boutique, middle-market funds that were our niche. Bigger is better to in order to attract these larger funds.”

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