Eide Bailly: A History of Accounting Services and Created Opportunities

Over 100 years ago, the roots of Eide Bailly are found in Fargo as accountants joined together to meet the growing need for financial services in the region. Today, Eide Bailly continues to serve their customers passionately and intelligently with a desire to see the city grow along with their Fargo-based accounting firm. “At our core, we provide our clients with financial compliance services… but we feel in today’s business environment, timely information and advice are imperative to operate quickly and successfully in the digital economy,” explained Ross Manson, Partner in Charge of Eide Bailly’s Fargo office.

The History and Culture

The history of Eide Bailly includes risk-taking, partnership, and a powerful work culture. Oliver Eide and Charles E. Bailly are two of these risk takers. They are the namesakes that today make up the name Eide Bailly. The journey from 1917 to 2017 began when Bishop, Brissman and Co. started a new office in Fargo, North Dakota. John A. Cull became its first manager who later hired Oliver Eide in 1934. Several years later, Charles E. Bailly moved to Fargo with a similar purpose, to open an accounting office for Broeker Hendrickson and Co., which later resulted in the start of Charles Bailly and Co.

As the turn of the century approached, the two accounting firms (Eide Helmeke and Charles Bailly and Co.) questioned future growth possibilities. At the time, it was commonplace for the two accounting firms to compete against each other for clients. In the 1990s, the two firms began to question whether or not more could be done if they were joined together. As a result, Eide Bailly was formed in 1998. The leadership of the new firm focused on maintaining the strong emphasis on the work culture that had brought success for the previous 100 years. “We believe that our culture differentiates us….we allow our employees to build out their skill set, and we strive to make sure our clients feel understood, connected, and confident,” shared Manson.

Adding Value and Serving

The long-term success of Eide Bailly can be attributed to their commitment to serve, add value and capitalize on opportunities. “We are proud to be the 20th largest public accounting firm in the nation that serves clients of all sizes….small businesses, large businesses, and start-ups,” explained Manson. Every client has different needs, and the Eide Bailly team offers accounting business advisory and consulting services to meet each client’s need.

Currently, Eide Bailly offers accounting for a range of services including audits, tax compliance and consulting, business outsourcing, and numerous other advisory services. Along with these services and access to business advisors, Eide Bailly invests in an array of business facets that are directly correlated with finance to add further value to clients.  “As an accounting firm, we see a great opportunity to offer advising and consultation along with our standard accounting firm services of audits and tax compliance,” shared Manson.

For entrepreneurs and the startup ecosystem, Eide Bailly invests in business outsourcing and strategy, which provides solutions for young companies.  This service seeks to address financial, human resource and technology demands for entrepreneurs. “We want to add value by providing an easy and mobile way for entrepreneurs and start-up companies to have financial services and advisors that every stage of their business’ journey,” explained Jenni Huotari, Director of Business Outsourcing and Strategy at Eide Bailly.

Along with this emphasis, Eide Bailly has numerous employees committed to health care consulting, cost segregation, research and development, technology, and other services. These investments are creating future growth opportunities for the community, clients and the firm. Although Eide Bailly is based in Fargo, there are offices across the nation totaling over 1700 employees. “Our longevity of 100 years is correlated with a growing business community around us….we see future opportunities as our community continues to grow and businesses are started, large and small,” shared Manson.

To New Opportunities

Eide Bailly is a supporting partner of Emerging Prairie and sees growth potential in the endeavors of entrepreneurs and start-ups in the region.  “We see Emerging Prairie and entrepreneurs working to create a thriving community that leads to growth… we are excited to play a role in helping create new possibilities in our community,” explained Huotari. Eide Bailly’s past is filled with an emphasis towards capitalizing on opportunities, and the future success will be found in continuing that formula.

Brent McNeal