St. Louis Business Journal 9-14

Biz Journal

Dunn CPA Firm Expands After Finding Right Lending Partner

For Tom Dunn’s CPA firm, the need for financing was simple. “Really, I just needed more space,” Dunn said.

In order to meet that need, the business is moving from Town & Country to a 12,000-sqaure-foot office building in Creve Coeur. The firm will occupy 6,000 square feet of the space, effectively doubling the size of its previous office. The deal closed in July, though Dunn would not provide cost details.

dunntom6122015-750xx5472-3078-0-285Although revenue for the firm are under $1 million annually, he said, it is growing at about 20 percent per year. Besides Dunn, the owner of Tom Dunn CPA Firm, the company has eight employees. He expects to double that employee total in the next two to five years with the expansion.

Dunn, who referred to his company as a “boutique” operation, serves as an accountant for small and medium businesses, as well as families. He started the firm in 2001, after owning a number of small businesses in the retail and service industries.

“I wanted to help small business owners and their families,” Dunn said. “I didn’t think anyone was out there focused on them.”
In addition to accounting, the company offers payroll, tax, transaction support and consulting services.

Initially, Dunn used his own capital to grow the business. When he sought financing assistance, he knew what qualities he desired in a lender.

“I like someone who makes things simple: ‘Here’s the solutions available — Here’s are the different ways we can go’,” Dunn said.
As an accountant, he sees his small-business customers struggle with financing at times.

“It’s not easy for them to get loans these days.” Dunn said. “Ever since the crash of 2008, loans are not as available.”
In a tight market for business loans, owners must be flexible when it comes to financing, he said.

“Small businesses need to be able to grow from other sources than banks,” Dunn said. “Whether it be deposits from customers, trade vendor credit … making sure their business is cash flow positive from the beginning.”