Knowledge and Insights
Princeton, NJ & Philadelphia, PA – The Mercadien Group is pleased to announce recent significant accomplishments by the two managing directors, Donald F. Conway, CPA, and Frank A. Pina, CPA, CFF, CFE, CGMA, who jointly lead the Forensic & Litigation Support Services Group, related to their specialized skills and client service in bankruptcy, forensic accounting and commercial dispute cases.
Donald F. Conway, CPA, in his capacity as Chapter 11 Trustee for an individual debtor who owned and operated several car wash businesses in the region, just completed another substantial property sale consisting of a former gas station site located on Broadway in New York City. Jointly owned by the debtor and his late father’s estate, this car wash property was sold by Trustee Conway for redevelopment for $12.3 million, more than double the appraised value. The sale included an agreement negotiated by Mr. Conway releasing the property owners from liability associated with known groundwater and soil contamination and other potential environmental issues identified through various investigations conducted by an environmental consultant.
Trustee Conway, with the assistance of his court-approved financial advisor, Frank A. Pina, CPA, CFF, CFE, CGMA, and other retained professionals, successfully secured the Broadway property and coordinated the environmental assessment, marketing and sale, just two years after selling a larger car wash site in Harlem for $16 million, nearly double its appraised value.
The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of New Jersey appointed Mr. Conway as Chapter 11 Trustee in the case in June 2014. The debtor’s bankruptcy was precipitated by lawsuits brought forth under the Fair Labor Standards Act and related statutes by former employees of his car wash businesses.
Having served in various trustee roles in a number of substantial, high-profile and long-term bankruptcy cases over the last 25 years, Mr. Conway stated, “It is gratifying to obtain the maximum sales value for this remaining, albeit distressed commercial property, and to receive approvals and agreement on the contracts of sale and distribution of proceeds from the Bankruptcy Court and the numerous parties involved – including attorneys, banks, real estate and engineering companies, the debtor and other property owners – all of which will help to conclude this complicated and long-running case.”
Separately, Mercadien congratulates Frank A. Pina, CPA, CFF, CFE, CGMA, on his selection for two distinguished honors: first, court-appointment as Examiner in six active bankruptcy cases via recommendations from the Office of the U.S. Trustee for Region 3 / U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of New Jersey; and second, receipt of the Forensic and Valuation Services (FVS) Standing Ovation award from the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).
Certified as a public accountant, fraud examiner and in financial forensics, and a well-known and frequent presenter on such topics, Mr. Pina’s court-appointment as Examiner in these six bankruptcy cases is a significant, high-level recognition of his professionalism, integrity and expertise in the fields of corporate accounting and forensic investigations, fraud detection, and civil and criminal litigation support. Examiners are often appointed with the power and duty to investigate and report on the acts, conduct, assets, liabilities, and financial condition of the debtor, the operation of the debtor’s business and the desirability of the continuance of such business, and any other matter relevant to the case or to the formulation of a plan of reorganization.
The AICPA award annually recognizes 20 members of the FVS section under the age of 40 for outstanding professional achievements and significant contributions in their specialty area of forensic accounting and in their communities. “The energetic young CPAs selected for this award are high performers; generating positive results in their practice fields, providing exemplary service and moving the accounting profession forward,” said Jeannette Koger, CPA, CGMA, the AICPA’s Vice President of Advisory Services and Credentialing.
Mercadien’s Forensic & Litigation Support Services Group assists counsel and clients from numerous diverse industries and types of businesses on a variety of controversial issues, including commercial and criminal litigation, restructurings and bankruptcies, contract and shareholder disputes, economic damage calculations, and fraud investigations. From high-profile investigations at global public companies to embezzlement scandals at regionally-based private entities, Mercadien has been entrusted to investigate and find solutions on behalf of boards, management, attorneys, plaintiffs, defendants, creditors, debtors, investors, banks and judicial or government bodies, discreetly and expeditiously, and in some cases continuously for many years, due to the integrity and experience shown in these matters.
The Mercadien Group offers a full spectrum of accounting and advisory services, including traditional audit and financial reporting; federal, multi-state and international tax compliance and planning; compliance oversight, risk assessment, forensic accounting and litigation support services; management and board consulting, as well as technology and wealth management solutions. The firm serves diverse and sophisticated clients, including privately-owned companies of nearly every type and industry, financial institutions, nonprofit organizations, government entities, and high-net-worth individuals and families, providing forward-thinking, relationship-driven financial and strategic services designed to maximize profitability and wealth, minimize taxes and risk, and enhance systems and efficiencies. Learn more at our new website – Mercadien.com.