Merger Announcement

Berning & Heidebrecht, Ltd. and ValuationUSA are announcing the merger of their respective business valuation firms effective September 2020. Our primary objective is to enhance the expertise and service offerings available to our clients. We will operate under the ValuationUSA name utilizing the Berning & Heidebrecht, Ltd. legal entity. With the merger, we will be one of the most experienced teams of consultants and valuation experts in the Upper Midwest.

The combined firm will provide services in the areas of business valuation, litigation damages and value opinions, divorce financial services, business succession planning, tax-related value opinions, business value enhancement, owner and management succession transition and planning, financial and operations analytics and optimization, and dealership services. The principals and staff of both predecessor firms will remain at ValuationUSA.

ValuationUSA will have deeper expertise and experience to bring to our clients. Although the two predecessor firms overlapped in most service areas, the firm combination brings clients business value enhancement and business succession planning to more clients.

A significant service element for the predecessor firms was providing expert witness opinions in litigation relating to valuation, damage analysis and economic loss and marital dissolutions. The firm combination strengthens this service areas by adding both specific expertise areas and financial analyst support.

Both predecessor firms have very strong referral networks that has led for the need to add capacity to continue to grow. Our combination enables a larger team of financial analysts that enables continued organic growth.

Rick Berning, CPA/ABV, CBA, CVA, ABAR, CFF, CMA founded Berning & Heidebrecht, Ltd as a business valuation and litigation support firm. Rick has performed hundreds of business valuations and expert opinions. Rick has acted as a court-appointed neutral expert and has provided expert witness testimony on more than 100 occasions. Rick is a frequent speaker locally and nationally on business valuation and divorce-related topics and has developed educational courses for the Minnesota State Bar Association, Hennepin County Bar Association, the Institute of Business Appraisers, the Minnesota Society of Certified Public Accounts, the National Association of Certified Valuation Analysts and the College for Financial Planning.

John Heidebrecht, ASA, CFE, MAFF, CDFA, CAC, MBA, prior to joining Berning & Heidebrecht, Ltd., was a Manager of the Valuation and Litigation Support departments of two larger CPA firms. John has performed hundreds of business valuation and expert opinions. John has provided witness expert testimony and serves often as a court-appointed neutral, Financial Early Neutral Evaluator (FENE) and financial mediator in Minnesota divorce cases. John focuses his practice on the management consulting, valuation of closely held businesses and intangible assets, valuation for financial reporting, high net worth non-marital tracing and property division, spousal maintenance and cash flow calculations, executive compensation analysis, lost profit analysis, and damage calculations. John is frequently a featured speaker at conferences and seminars for legal, accounting and business organizations on a variety of topics.

Kirk Kleckner CPA MBA ASA prior to founding ValuationUSA was the Chief Financial Officer for a top 50 U.S. dealership group and a shareholder for a large CPA firm including roles as Chief Operating Officer and Director of Business Valuation and Litigation Support Services. Kirk has performed hundreds of business valuations and expert opinions. Kirk focuses his practice on the valuation of closely-held businesses, business succession planning, business value enhancement, tax related valuation matters, litigation expert opinions and other engagements where he can leverage his experience and perspective from working in the private sector as a CFO. Kirk is a qualified expert witness in complex business litigation, economic damages calculations, business and intangible asset valuation, owner disputes and lost profits serving as an expert in many matters with damage awards exceeding $100,000,000.

Below is updated contact information. More information about ValuationUSA services and people is at the new company website:

Contact Information

Minnesota Office Address: 809 Meander Court, Medina, MN 55340; o (952) 544-1212; f (952) 767-0112

Florida Office Address: 5835 Cessna Run, Bradenton, FL 34211; o (612) 760-8400; f (952) 767-0112

Direct Phone Numbers:

  • Rick Berning (952) 544-1212 ext. 1
  • John Heidebrecht (952) 544-1212 ext. 2
  • Kirk Kleckner (952) 544-1212 ext. 3