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Deloitte Disney World joins PwC’s tax practice which took the dirt nap effective May 3rd. The Orlando Business Journal reports that the office will become “virtual,” a term that still has not been defined to our satisfaction.
We called Deloitte Orlando for more information but the employee we spoke to “was not authorized to comment.” We were forwarded to a voicemail box of someone else and we haven’t heard back. According to the report in the OBJ, Deloitte is the third largest firm in the area; according to Deloitte’s website the location has 60 employees.
One source familiar with Deloitte told us that this could possibly be a move by D (and possibly other firms) to “centralize their operations in an effort to cuts costs,” while still maintaing a minimum “physical presence” in a city. Whatever the reasoning the most likely scenario is that no one wants to be within a stone’s throw of a certain resident.
Accounting firms rumored to be paring down area operations [Orlando Business Journal (subscription)]
Yesterday, PwC tax professionals got word that the firm is discontinuing tax operations from its Orlando office effective May 3, 2010.
Mario de Armas, the South Florida managing partner, explained that lack of business, “Orlando-based tax clients has declined, and we have been forced to import tax hours from other offices to keep our people busy,” and staffing challenges, “We have also faced a continued challenge around staff development in a primarily compliance environment,” lead to the closure of the practice.
The email states “We are committed to assisting each impacted individual with this transition,” although no details were given. The email also states that there will be no other Florida practices will be shut down, “To be clear, we have no plans to close any other practice areas in any of our Florida offices.” Emails to Mr de Armas and Jorge Gross, the Florida Tax leader were not returned. An email to PwC’s national press relations was also not returned.
If you will be affected by this closure, get in touch with us and we’ll continue to update you as we learn more.
We are constantly evaluating our client service delivery to ensure that our clients receive the best service possible and that our people are being offered opportunities for development and advancement. Over the past few years, revenue from Orlando-based tax clients has declined, and we have been forced to import tax hours from other offices to keep our people busy. A limited number of corporations are headquartered in Orlando, and while many of those corporations have been retained as audit clients, fewer have been tax clients. We have also faced a continued challenge around staff development in a primarily compliance environment, and more compliance work will be performed at the centralized Tax delivery center over time. As a result, the Firm has concluded that we will no longer have tax professionals located in the Orlando office effective May 3, 2010.
Knowing that we will be asked about this decision in the marketplace, it is important that we have a clear message to the market. From a strategy perspective, we believe that our distinctive footprint across the state of Florida makes us uniquely positioned to service our Orlando clients from our other offices, following the One Market concept.
This has been a difficult decision, and one that was reluctantly made after considering many factors. Our Tax professionals in Orlando have served our clients well. They have contributed in many ways to our market, and their efforts are valued and greatly appreciated. We are committed to assisting each impacted individual with this transition.
To be clear, we have no plans to close any other practice areas in any of our Florida offices. Please contact me or Jorge Gross, our Florida Tax Leader, with any questions you may have.