Our Firm’s Credentials & Experience

When selecting a business valuation firm, it is important to consider the credentials and experience of the firm’s professional staff.  A comparison of the primary business valuation credentials is shown below.

There is the Accredited Senior Appraiser (ASA) credential offered by the American Society of Appraisers, the Accredited in Business Valuation (ABV) offered by the AICPA, the Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA) credentials offered by the National Association of Valuation Analysts (NACVA), and the Certified Business Appraiser (CBA) and Master Certified Business Appraiser (MCBA) credentials offered by the Institute of Business Appraisers (IBA). Both NACVA and the IBA are owned by the Consultants Training Institute (CTI).

  • The CTI credential seekers all take the same 45 hour course, and the ABV training is better at 75 hours, but ASA requires 5 courses comprising 123 hours. Huge difference here.

  • All the credentials include a case study in their training, but only the ASA and CBA require the submission of client valuation reports for accreditation.

  • For experience, the ABV only requires 150 hours. The CTI credentials require two years of either CPA or valuation experience. The ASA leads again, requiring 5 years of full time valuation experience (those with only 2 years of experience are given the lesser credential of Accredited Member until they practice five years).

The credentials and experience of an appraiser are two of the most important areas of consideration when hiring a business appraiser.  This is particularly true when the appraisal may be challenged (i.e. tax valuations, ESOP valuations, litigation valuations, etc.).  A number of court cases over the years have commented on the inadequacy of a business appraiser’s training, certification and competence to testify as a business valuation expert.

In general, the court considers:

  • The credentials of the appraiser,

  • The experience of the appraiser (whether or not the appraiser performs business valuations on a full-time basis),

  • Whether or not the appraiser is independent in appearance and fact (not an advocate), and

  • The training, education of the individual and their membership in various professional valuation organizations.

Atlantic Management Company views the requirements as the most important component of professional certifications.  Currently, our professional staff maintain the following credentials: ASA, CBA, MCBA, and CVA.