Latest Publications

New Review Designation Requirements Open Doors for ASA Appraisers

The American Society of Appraisers recently made changes to its Appraisal Review and Management (ARM) program to allow currently designated ASA’s to earn an ARM designation. This shift was in direct response to emerging trends towards increased regulation scrutiny, lawsuits and penalties forcing valuation professionals from all disciplines to take a serious look at their business practices.

The first of two required classes for currently designated ASAs to earn their ARM designation was held March 20-23, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois and as expected, attracted appraisers from various different backgrounds and disciplines.

Two of those appraisers were Nancy Stacy, ASA, MGA® and Keith M. Bransky, ASA. Nancy is a gems and jewelry (GJ) appraiser from the San Francisco Bay area who specializes in modern and antique fine jewelry, diamonds, gemstones and watches; and Keith is machinery and technical specialties (MTS) appraiser from Atlanta, Georgia who specializes in aircraft appraisals.

On the surface, these two seasoned appraisers have little, if anything, in common beyond their designation, yet both are on their way to earning their ARM designation in their respective disciplines.

Nancy Stacy, ASA

Nancy Stacy, ASA

When asked why a busy GJ appraiser like Nancy would make time to pursue yet another designation, Nancy said, “My main reason is to gain additional skills for my expert witness work. Occasionally I am asked to review an appraisal produced by an expert on the other side of the case. I want to be able to provide a concise, objective analysis to Counsel.  I highly recommend it for all our hard-working examiners.”

Furthermore, there is always something to be said about the ASA difference when it comes to education offerings. “ASA’s education courses have made me what I am today—a professional appraisal who understands value and the diverse types of appraisals needed by my clients.  ASA courses have a firm basis in legislation, case law, and economic theory not even touched on by others. I am confident in my knowledge, and in the support I have available from other ASA appraisal professionals,” commented Nancy.

Keith M. Bransky, ASA

Keith M. Bransky, ASA

As an MTS appraiser, Keith’s approach to how a veteran aviation appraiser could use an additional ARM designation was two-pronged. “In my opinion, there are two main reasons for an MTS appraiser to consider the ARM courses. They are: 1) to increase your business (revenue) potential by diversifying your services; 2) to improve your own work product.” Keith explained that, “...there is a growing demand for individuals who are qualified in MTS appraisal review. Getting an ARM designation could be a way to increase your business and generate additional income.”

Beyond diversifying revenue streams, during what can sometimes be described as a volatile economic environment, Keith also urged that attaining his ARM designation would improve his work as a professional. “The risk management benefit of improving my own work-product by [learning] how to critically review the work of other appraisers is far more important to me. In other words, by learning from the mistakes of others, as the appraisal reviewer, I will improve my own reports.”

ASA’s Appraisal Review and Management program has certainly evolved over the years. Today’s changes allow designated ASA’s to earn his or her ARM designation, allowing them to improve their work, their business and ultimately the appraisal profession.

To register or for information on upcoming ARM classes visit ASA online or call (800) 272-8258.


Event Recap: How to be a Successful and Effective Expert Witness (March 5-6, 2014) and Personal Property Issues and Insights: San Francisco (March 7-8, 2014)

Editor’s Note: Reviews are in for last months ASA San Francisco conferences: How to be a Successful and Effective Expert Witness and Personal Property Issues and Insights. One attendee writes: “A wonderful job in the scope of the presentations and the quality of the speakers.” Another comment:  “…never having attended an ASA conference before, I found the group welcoming, kind and very congenial. Bravo!” The two programs were scheduled, one after another, so many of the attendees could participate in both. At the end of the fourth day, Georgie M. Stillman, ASA from Chula Vista, CA said, “In my almost 30 years of attending ASA conferences this one was by far the most fruitful. I’m going home with at least ten take always that will improve my appraisal business.” Co-chair event volunteer organizers were:

Mary Kay Lyon, ASA and Analee McClellan, ASA.

How to be a Successful and Effective Expert Witness (March 5-6)

Photo Credit: Paul E. Drooks

ASA’s Expert Witness Conference
Photo Credit: Paul E. Drooks

The two-day ASA conference in collaboration with SEAK focused upon the needs of appraisers and allied professionals. It was designed to help attendees learn how to provide expert witness testimony. Topics included common cv and website mistakes, what goes into a defensible report, preparing for deposition, trial, and dealing with difficult cross-examinations. The program also featured illustrative videos and mock trial exercises.

The engaging and interactive presentation by James Mangraviti, Esq. of SEAK drew glowing reviews across the board from BV, RP, MTS, GJ and PP appraisers.

“Absolutely excellent content and presentation,” wrote one participant. Another added: “GREAT conference—great speaker—great location.”

According to Sarah S. McCullom, AM from Alexandria, Virginia: “I truly enjoyed the program. While I dont expect to become an expert witness as a primary part of my business, it is certainly possible that I would be deposed and/or a witness regarding an appraisal I performed. This training has prepared me to face that possibility with confidence.”

Ranging from veteran ASA members who have testified hundreds of times to new Candidates, the attendees enjoyed getting to know one another during a very challenging and informative two days.

Personal Property Issues and Insights: San Francisco (March 7-8)

ASA's Personal Property Conference

ASA’s Personal Property Conference

A jam-packed 1.5-day connoisseurship conference was devoted to the special collections and sites of San Francisco featuring lectures by experts from the Bay Area as well as field trips. Afterwards, one participant commented: “I learned a lot in a very short time.” And another wrote: ”Great balance between classroom and field trips, plus great speakers.”

Gawain Weaver opened the program with a lecture on “Photography ID & Connoisseurship for the General Appraiser.” He was followed by Dr. Devin Zuber from Pacific Theological Union at Berkeley, Graduate Theological Union at Berkeley, who spoke on “Hieroglyphics of Nature: Swedenborg and American Landscape Painting.” The morning concluded with Marsha V. Handley, ASA from Xanadu Gallery on “Asian Art: Connoisseurship, Fakes & Forgeries.” Afternoon field trips included the Pilara Collection at Pier 24 and the Legion of Honor with a guided tour of “Matisse from SFMOMA” with Curator Janet Bishop, a look at Matisse prints behind the scenes with Assistant Curator Colleen Terry in the Print Study Room and special insights into the exhibit “Matisse and the Artist Book” with Curator Karin Breuer. At the National Historical Landmark Swedenborgian Church, Holly A. Mitchem, ASA spoke on Arts & Crafts and California painting. An evening reception at Bonhams, Gold Sponsor of the conferences, included a talk by Doug Davidson on wine values, along with remarks by Stephen G. Turner with Sarah R. Nelson, and Brooke Sivo.

The Saturday half-day began with David Boysel: “Scratching the Surface of Period Paint Effects: Graining, Glazing, Marbling and Gilding, 1840–1940.” Then a panel explored the role of online sales in a lively discussion on “Changing Market Dynamics” with Daniel Stein from Daniel Stein Antiques, Sarah Stocking from Sarah Stocking Antique Posters and James Salzmann from Paddle 8 along with Moderator, Lela Hersh, ASA. The conference concluded with self-guided visits to Jackson Square galleries.

Sponsor Acknowledgement

ASA gratefully acknowledges the support of sponsors, Bonhams (Gold Sponsor), ASA NorCal Chapter, Blow Up Lab, and City National Bank.

ASA San Francisco conference sponsors played an important role in the successful conferences. Gold Sponsor, Bonhams, not only provided financial support but also offered an outstanding program and gracious reception at their San Francisco auction house. Reception Sponsor, ASA NorCal Chapter, helped underwrite an evening reception during the first day of the conference and also contributed helpful volunteers. Read more about these two major sponsors.

Gold Sponsor:


Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world’s largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques, with more than 600 auctions annually in 60 specialist categories. With galleries in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Toronto, Bonhams is the only major auction house in North America with sales rooms on both coasts. The Bonhams name is recognized worldwide throughout all sectors of the fine art, antiques and collectors’ markets, with many of its departments established as world leaders within their respective fields.

Reception Sponsor:

ASA NorCal Chapter

The Northern California/Nevada Chapter of the American Society of Appraisers (ASA) represents over 250 appraisers in the San Francisco Bay Area, the Central Valley, the greater Sacramento area, and the state of Nevada. This year’s NorCal Chapter Board of Directors are: President, Jack Young, ASA; Vice President: Garrett Schwartz, ASA; Treasurer: Matthew Dianich, ASA; Secretary: Louise Allrich; ASA ; and Past-President: Robert P. Lentz III, ASA. Discipline Directors are: Business Valuation: Kristopher Hall, ASA; Gems & Jewelry: Maurice Woulf; Machinery & Technical Specialties: Matthew Dianich, ASA and Garrett Schwartz ASA; Real Property: Lee Bartholomew, ASA; and Personal Property: Tony Pernicone, ASA.

View an online photo tour of these two events.


ASA in Australia Hosts a Stellar Event

In March 2014, The Australian chapter of the American Society of Appraisers held the 2014 Australia Chapter Equipment Identification Seminar at the West Sports Club in Newcastle, Australia. The seminar included a trip to the Valley Longwall Industries facility in Newcastle, Australia where attendees toured manufacturing and maintenance workshops and a visit to the ground breaking automated systems of Orica Explosives Manufacturing Plant.

The hard work of the volunteer organizers and has definitely been well rewarded and it seems that all attendees and members left with a very positive experience and sentiment.” Said President of the ASA Australia Chapter, David Crick, ASA.

The purpose of the seminar was to create an environment for networking and education, where the ASA professional could showcase how a client can benefit from working with a duly designated ASA appraiser. The seminar attracted more than 60 attendees on each day—representing major valuation houses, banks and equipment financiers. Attendees came from all corners of Australia and New Zealand. Machinery and Technical Specialties (MTS) committee chair Robert Clark, ASA also attended and made remarks.

ASA’s MTS discipline is constantly working on ways to expand the society’s reach into the international markets.  This event was an excellent example of how ASA, and specifically the MTS discipline, continues to flourish abroad.” said Robert Clark, ASA.

Speakers at the seminar included:

ASA’s Australian chapter was established in October 2007 and currently has more than 80 members. To learn more about ASA and its chapters, go to


RP401: New Going Concern Appraisal Course Launches With Rave Reviews

In March 2014, the American Society of Appraisers (ASA)’s Real Property discipline launched the first occurrence of a new education course titled “RP401, Allocating Components in Going Concern Appraisals”, developed in response to new requirements impacting Small Business Administration (SBA)-backed business loans. The course was taught in Las Vegas, Nevada by L. Deane Wilson, ASA and Robert C. Schlegel, FASA. A second offering was also held in late March in Anaheim, California.

RP401’s timely and relevant content comes on the heels of the January 2014 announcement that the SBA would begin to adhere to the updated Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) dealing with all aspects of SBA-backed business loans. Reflected in these SOPs are changes to who is considered a “qualified source” to perform Going Concern valuations in support of these loans. The new SOPs require appraisers to hold one of several generally recognized professional appraisal designations —including the Accredited Senior Appraiser offered by ASA— to be considered a “qualified source”.

Far too long we have been duped into believing because the math is correct there must be value.  That is simply not the case. An appraiser can perform a mathematical formula, such as the excess earnings method, but without market support for that method the math becomes a magical mathematical manipulation and not a representation of market participants,” said class instructor L. Deane Wilson, ASA.

RP401 focuses on how to readily identify properties with going concerns as well as how to determine whether it’s appropriate to allocate or segregate components in going concerns.  Students explored proven methods to determine the intangible component and how to gather data to support that claim as well as what to do when there is no market supported method or data in which to allocate the intangible component.

Students had a lot to say about the course:

“One of the best RP classes for appraisers in a multidiscipline environment.  Opens up new appraisal work opportunities in a changing field. This class shows that ASA can deliver quality education to a multidiscipline audience.” Ernest A. Demba, FASA, Demba Valuation Services, LLC, LLC, Ballwin, MO.

This course unraveled some of the complexities in the area of allocating going concern in real property Valuation.  Never boring, I learned a lot of new techniques that I can’t wait to start incorporating in future appraisal assignments.  Many thanks to the instructors who turned the complex into more understandable concepts.” —Karen J. Mann, ASA, Mann & Associates, Discovery Bay, CA.

This class taught me the importance of understanding how business valuation works and how we can work together” —Adriana Gomez, KPMG, Mexico City, Mexico.

“You don’t get this kind of advanced dialogue in a typical appraisal class.” —Robert Magee, Franklin Realty Advisors, LLC, Richmond, VA.

“A valuable resource providing assistance in unraveling components of Going Concern; using multiple methods can help bracket intangible results.”Brian Vincent, Pacific Appraisal Associates, Wenatchee, WA.

“I recently completed the Allocating Components in Going Concern Appraisals course and it was excellent. The course that was taught by very talented instructors…. The topics were relevant to current appraisal practices and the instructors were very knowledgeable and approachable. There was lots of good collaboration in the class. I recommend this class to anyone that is involved in the appraisal of real estate that has a business integrated with the real estate such as a hotel, restaurant, gas station, C-store, car wash, golf course, marina, movie theater, bowling alley, restaurant, health club or nursing home. Upon completing this interesting course, you will better understand how to appropriately consider personal property, trade fixtures, or intangible items in your appraisal.”R. Casey Merrill, ASA, MAI, MRICS, CBRE Valuation & Advisory Services,  Los Angeles, CA.

RP401 is approved for 27 ASA continuing education hours for the following states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah and Washington with additional state approvals pending.

The next offering of RP401 Allocating Components in Going Concern Appraisals will be on May 29, 2014 in Portland, Oregon with future dates and locations to be added throughout the year. View pictures of this unique course by clicking here.

Learn more about ASA real property valuation education offerings at


ASA HSIG’s Healthcare Valuation Program Comes to St. Louis

Todd A. Zigrang, ASA

Todd A. Zigrang, ASA

ASA’s Healthcare Special Interest Group (HSIG) and St. Louis Chapter are set to co-host “The Four Pillars of the Healthcare Industry: A Review of the Reimbursement, Regulatory, Competitive and Technological Environment for Healthcare Valuation”, a two-day, in-person course session to be held Friday, April 25, through Saturday, April 26, 2014, at the Marriott St. Louis Airport Hotel.

To learn more about this important event, we sat down with the President of ASA’s St. Louis Chapter, Todd A. Zigrang, ASA, who is also President of Health Capital Consultants, a platinum sponsor of ASA HSIG’s Multidisciplinary Advanced Education in Healthcare Valuation Program.

Q. What makes ASA HSIG’s two-day, in-person course session unique?

A. No other course covers such a comprehensive review of the history and development of the healthcare industry. Discussions include the changing healthcare environment within the “Four Pillars” of healthcare valuation, i.e., the reimbursement, regulatory, competitive, and technological environments. It explores the unique dynamics of the emerging organizations and evolving business arrangements of healthcare integration to pursue the requisite background for forecasting the future performance of these enterprises, assets, and services. Additionally, this course session offers an experienced group of presenters who are healthcare industry luminaries in their respective professional specialties. ASA will provide 14 hours of CPE or ASA continuing education credits for this two-day course.

Q. Why should appraisers consider this opportunity?

A. The healthcare industry has evolved over the past several decades amid rapidly changing regulations, reimbursement issues, competitive forces, and technological advancements, which have created a growing demand for qualified valuation professionals with the appropriate healthcare industry expertise to assist and advise healthcare enterprises in navigating complicated industry obstacles. The requisite knowledge of market benchmark data and the valuation methodologies to appraise healthcare enterprises, assets, and services, while maintaining regulatory compliance, suggests an increasing need for healthcare valuation consulting services provided by professionals in multiple valuation disciplines, e.g. real property, business valuation, tangible personal property (FF&E), and intangible property.

Q. Tell us more about the presenters for this course session?

A. A blockbuster faculty lineup has been announced for this in-person course session, including:

  1. Scott A. Edelstein, Esq., is a leading healthcare attorney in the area of healthcare technology, and is co-chair of Squire Sanders Washington, DC office’s Healthcare & Life Sciences Industry Group and a member of its Data Protection and Healthcare Reform task forces. Mr. Edelstein will be presenting on developments in healthcare technology.
  2. C. Frederick Geilfuss, Esq., MA, who has been recognized as one of the nation’s outstanding healthcare transaction lawyers by Nightingale’s Health Care News, is a partner at Foley & Lardner, and is a member of the Milwaukee, WI office’s Health Care Industry Team. Mr. Geilfuss has been recognized as one of the nation’s outstanding health care transaction lawyers by Nightingale’s Health Care News. Mr. Geilfuss will be presenting on the regulatory environment in the healthcare industry.
  3. Roger W. Logan, MS, CPA/ABV, ASA, is Senior Vice President of Phoenix Children’s Hospital and Chief Administrative Officer for Phoenix Children’s Medical Group in Phoenix, AZ. Mr. Logan is responsible for all operations, including strategic development and financial management, for the 240 employed physicians and providers at Phoenix Children’s. Mr. Logan will be presenting on the impact of competitive forces on the healthcare industry.
  4. George A Schneider CPA, MPH, is Chief Financial Officer at Geisinger Health Plans in Danville, PA, and is responsible for the budgeting, forecasting, expense benchmarking, and management operations at Geisinger. Mr. Schneider will be presenting on the reimbursement environment in the healthcare industry.

Q. What’s the one thing everyone should do while visiting your city?

A. Besides getting a bird’s eye view of the city by visiting the famous Gateway Arch, everyone should experience America’s favorite pastime by cheering on our local baseball team. Our 11-time World Champion St. Louis Cardinals will be playing division rivals Pittsburgh Pirates during the weekend of the course session. In fact, those individuals who register for this in-person course session by Friday, April 18, 2014, will be entered in a drawing to win a pair of tickets to see the game on Sunday, April 27, 2014, at 1:15 p.m.


ASA’s Expert Witness Conference Generates Attention by Media


Art Newspaper discusses issue raised in press release about ASA’s Expert Witness Conference.

Art Newspaper discusses issue raised in press release about ASA’s Expert Witness Conference.

Media outreach efforts to promote ASA’s Expert Witness Conference have resulted in coverage by national, local and industry media outlets, including pick up of the conference’s press release by news feeds of 350 national and local media outlets like Reuters and the San Francisco Business Times; and editorial coverage by industry media outlets like, Art Newspaper and BVWire.The press release, titled “Challenges to Appraisers in Tax Court Prompt New Conference,” explained the growing need for valuation professionals to be able to effectively communicate and present conclusions in courts of law, and discussed recent high-profile tax court cases involving works of fine art.

Dennis A. Webb, ASA quote.

Dennis A. Webb, ASA quote.

ASA members Dennis A. Webb, ASA and Karen Holtzman, ASA were quoted in the February 2014 issue of The Art Newspaper, an international publication with a circulation of 23,000 and readership of over 50,000.

The article by Julia Halperin entitled “Taxman Eyes Art but Owners Hit Back in Court” mentions the ASA Expert Witness conference, refers to the press release about the IRS penalties for appraisers and includes quotes from Webb and Holtzman.

ASA’s 2-day Expert Witness Conference was held March 5-6, 2014 in San Francisco, CA. Topics covered included common CV and website mistakes, what goes into a defensible report, preparing for deposition, trial, and dealing with difficult cross-examinations. 14 hours of ASA continuing education credits were offered, which were also approved by California’s Bureau of Real Estate Appraisers (BREA).

Karen Holtzman, ASA quote.

Karen Holtzman, ASA quote.

ASA continues to address this topic in an upcoming 2-hour webinar by Roger P. Durkin, Esq., FASA titled “The Appraiser as an Expert Witness” to be held March 31, 2014 from 2-4 PM ET. This webinar will provide an overview of the judicial system, the complexities of dispute resolution and the expert’s role in the process; review the role of a professional appraiser as an expert witness; explain how the system works, what to expect, how to act; and discuss economic and property rights, value diminution, legal evidence, direct examination, cross-examination, expert witness federal rules of evidence, case law, statues, and the process of legal reasoning. The webinar will also present a plan and method of marketing expert witness services. It will enable valuation professionals to see opportunities to improve their practice, gain new clients, and generally present themselves more professionally. To register or for more information visit ASA online or call (800) 272-8258.


Healthcare Valuation Course Session Set for St. Louis

The Gateway Arch

The Gateway Arch

ASA’s Healthcare Special Interest Group and St. Louis Chapter are set to host “The Four Pillars of the Healthcare Industry: A Review of the Reimbursement, Regulatory, Competitive and Technological Environment for Healthcare Valuation”, a two-day, in-person course session to be held April 25-26, 2014 at the Marriott St. Louis Airport Hotel.

This course session serves as the cornerstone for the Society’s new Multidisciplinary Advanced Education in Healthcare Valuation Program and is open to appraisers from all disciplines.

It provides an in-depth look at the history and development of healthcare under the changing reimbursement, regulatory, competitive and technological environment of the healthcare industry, as well as the unique dynamics of the business arrangements that comprise emerging healthcare organizations, in order to obtain the requisite background for forecasting the future performance of these enterprises, assets and services.

Topics covered include: Overview of Healthcare Industry, Healthcare Reimbursement Environment in an Era of Reform, Impact of Competitive Forces, Technology Development and Regulatory Environment of the Healthcare Industry.

Students successfully completing this course and other program requirements may qualify for a Multidisciplinary Advanced Education in Healthcare Valuation Program Certificate of Completion.

The class will be hosted by ASA’s Healthcare Special Interest Group and St. Louis Chapter and sponsored in part by: Willamette Management Associates, NPV Advisors and St. Louis, MO based Health Capital Consultants, all of whom are platinum sponsors.

The St. Louis, Missouri – Marriott St. Louis Airport location offers easy and convenient access. Located at the geographic hub of the United States, most major U.S. cities are accessible by plane within three hours or less. Lambert International Airport services AirTran, American Airlines, Delta United, US Airways, and is the focus city for Southwest Airlines.

Marriott St. Louis Airport Hotel

Marriott St. Louis Airport Hotel

Situated next to the airport, the Marriott St. Louis Airport Hotel features a $20 million renovated lobby, guest rooms and event space; includes impressive amenities such as a fully equipped fitness center, relaxing indoor/outdoor pool; The Restaurant; and a complimentary airport shuttle. The hotel is just a short 15 minute drive from downtown or commute via the MetroLink, the greater St. Louis light rail transit system.

The Gateway City offers its visitors an exciting array of attractions and activities filled with culture and Midwest fun for all!

Registration for the course session is currently in progress. To register or for more information visit or call (800) 272-8258.


Seminars in Appraisal Excellence-ASA Japan

Seminar in Excellence attendees.

Seminar in Excellence attendees.

In late February, ASA’s Machinery & Technical Specialties (MTS) Discipline participated in a special training session sponsored by the Japanese Society of Independent Appraisers (JaSIA), Kobelco Construction Machinery (KCM) and Deloitte Tohmatsu. KCM is a major group company of Kobelco, a Japan’s leading steel manufacturer.

Following a similar session held in July 2013 at the main factory of DMG Mori Seiki, a leading Japanese machine tool manufacturer, this was the second in a series of seminars organized by JaSIA to target Japanese MTS ASA accreditation candidates and provide  participants with the practical training of report writing. These seminars intend to combines the inspection of actual assets with leading authorities in excellence of various industries, ASA and JaSIA, and JaSIA will continue to offer similar opportunities to its members regularly.

The seminar this time was held in Kobe, Japan at the Kobelco equipment yard. Presentations were given by Mr. Kenji Fukuya, Director and President of Kobelco Construction Machinery International Trading Co., Ltd.(KIT), Mr. Kazuo Wakayama, Executive Director of JaSIA. Mr. Ichiro Satonaka, Director of KIT presented on the inspection and  use of the Kobelco Proprietary Equipment Inspection and Status form. Keiji Mori and Yoshio Shinohara from Kobelco were also on hand to help with the inspection process.

Representing the Society, Richard Berkemeier, ASA gave remarks on the process of inspecting and valuing construction equipment. After presentation, about 30 students from JaSIA and other attendees evaluated equipment with experienced technical staff of KIT This process involved the inspection and valuation of four pieces of construction equipment from Kobelco’s equipment inventory:

Kobelco Model (Excavator)

SK30SR-2E    PW10-22368

SK115SR          YV-00477

SK200-8          YN11-48243

Sumitomo (Excavator)

SH200-3        200A3-5472

This ‘Seminar in Excellence’ provided a unique opportunity ASA students to meet, interact and learn from senior management from one of Japan’s largest industrial companies.”  said Richard Berkemeier. JaSIA , Deloitte Tomatsu and ASA are planning several more “Appraisal Seminars in Excellence” for later in 2014.

“For many types of property, especially machinery, intangibles and business valuation, the appraisal profession has great growth potential in Japan. Thanks to the volunteers from Kobelco, Deloitte and JaSIA for organizing this successful event.  As ASA looks to grow internationally, Japan represents a significant and mutually beneficial opportunity,” said ASA’s International President, J. Mark Penny, ASA.

Below are a few pictures from this exciting seminar.


ME215 Instructor Profile: Douglas R. Krieser, ASA

DouglasEditors Note: With the coming of ME215: Performing Machinery and Equipment Valuations for Financial Reporting Purposes, to be held March 20, 2014 in Chicago, IL, we took this opportunity to interview course instructor Douglas R. Krieser, ASA on the benefits of joining ASA and the importance of a course like Performing Machinery and Equipment Valuations for Financial Reporting Purposes.

A twist of fate and a little luck got Douglas R. Krieser, ASA FRICS to where he is today. Doug has been an Accredited Senior Appraiser for 17 years and an active member of the Chicago Chapter of ASA as well as the Machinery & Technical Specialties Discipline. Read more about how his “in the bag” career as an Industrial Engineer took a left turn and led him to what he calls a “Much more interesting job than any engineer.”

Tell me how you first got involved in the appraisal profession?

I actually got into the appraisal profession “by accident”.  I graduated from Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI in 1988 with a degree in Industrial Engineering. While there, I was working as an intern at General Motors and fully intended to be a production engineer at a GM assembly plant. GM had a hiring freeze the year I graduated and only one out of six interns was hired that year. We were not informed of this hiring freeze until our last term. Needless to say, I started immediately researching any and all open positions where I thought my degree could be of use. During my research, I found a company called Factory Mutual Engineering (FM) and saw a brochure on machinery appraisals. The brochure mentioned traveling the world, reviewing manufacturing processes, and dealing with both engineers and corporate finance personnel. I had never even heard of appraisal previously, but thought this would be a GREAT way to find an engineering job.

I was able to take advantage of FM’s very thorough training program. There was an intense “crash course” in valuation and machinery identification and for several months I was sent out with Senior Appraisers to assist on actual appraisals. I mostly observed and took notes. Throughout the inventory and appraisal process, the Appraisers would explain why they were doing why it was  important. This helped me  learn the appraisal process.  After my initial 6 months of training, I was finally let loose to do my first solo appraisal.

I have dealt with many engineers in my time at FM and quickly realized I had a MUCH more interesting job (to me anyways) than any of the engineers I had met. I get bored easily and thus, being able to go into many different types of facilities and seeing how different products are made is very interesting. I have seen some pretty cool stuff such as the prototype space suits for the moon and mars, aircraft and helicopter manufacturing, automobile manufacturing, prototype vehicles and products, etc. I have also had the pleasure of being able to travel quite a bit, which I don’t think I would have done had I been an automotive engineer. I firmly believe my industrial engineering training has assisted me in my appraisal career since I can identify and/or uncover efficiencies and inefficiencies in processes, which may affect value. Overall, I am happy with my decision. It is a very interesting career, which allows me to travel and see many different companies and occupancies.

How did you first get involved with ASA?

I began hearing about the ASA from my former department manager Dick Amoling, FASA and others at FM. Dick eventually became President of ASA. I really became involved in the ASA after I left FM and began work at Arthur Andersen LLP.

I was heading up the Midwest machinery valuation practice for Andersen and my lead Partner suggested I get my ASA designation. I had been appraising for about 10 years at the time. I received my designation within a couple of years and wanted to get more involved. After Andersen was put out of business, I went to work for another consulting firm who wanted me to maintain my designation but was not especially supportive of me getting too involved due to the time commitment required.

After starting Valcon Partners Ltd, I was able to devote the time I felt ASA and the MTS discipline deserved. I quickly became involved in both teaching and the MTSC. As a matter of fact, on my last day with my former company, I left the office and headed to the airport to attend my first MTSC meeting in New Orleans.

Do you have a specialization? If so, how did you get specialized in this area?

Valcon Partners Ltd focuses on a wide variety of tangible asset consulting but was formed primarily to provide valuation in conjunction with mergers and acquisitions and other financial reporting related consulting. I was introduced to financial reporting valuations at Andersen and became very interested in this subject matter.

After Andersen, I worked at company where the primary focus was providing financial reporting valuations for clients of audit firms. Audit firms could not provide this service to their clients due to a conflict of interest.

I began to study the new standards in much detail.

Eventually, I was asked by the MTS Committee and a few companies to provide presentations of the new standards and how they apply to the tangible asset appraiser. I sort of became the “go to” appraiser on the committee for anyone who had questions on this type of appraisal or the standards. I have written several articles for the MTS Journal and given presentations regarding the subject at various ASA conferences. I also have given a few independent presentations on the subject to a few private audiences. Over time, it was decided that it would be helpful to consolidate all of the data into a course, which ended up becoming ME215 Performing Machinery and Equipment Valuations for Financial Reporting Purposes.

Why should M&E appraisers be versed in Performing Machinery & Equipment Valuations for Financial Reporting Purposes?

Mergers and acquisitions appraisals, as well as impairment testing can be great sources of income for appraisers. In addition, providing such consulting can open the appraiser up to other projects from previously untapped markets such as tax and audit firms, investment bankers, equity firms, certain attorneys, etc. The same standards and definitions, which are used for financial reporting, are slowly but surely making their way into other areas where appraisers practice.

For example, many leasing companies are now using the same definition of Fair Value utilized for financial reporting and this may soon be the basis of value used by all financial institutions (including banks), where some appraisers get the majority of their work. It is also the same definition of value that is now used in bankruptcy proceedings. Additionally, the valuation practice and profession is continually becoming more global. There is a prominent movement to consolidate the world wide valuation standards around the financial reporting standards that are currently being used. It is important that the valuer understand the standards, the premise of value and how it applies under various scenarios.

What are the major issues or risks M&E appraisers should be aware of?

I would like to make this broader than just MTS appraisers since one of the main issues with valuations performed under the premise of Fair Value are what I call “Team valuations”.  An appraisal of one set of assets (i.e. machinery, personal property, real estate, intangible assets) cannot be performed in a vacuum.  In this type of valuation, more than any other, the values all interact and can influence each other to a certain extent. For example, the value indicated by the overall Business Enterprise Valuation (BEV) can identify potential economic obsolescence, which needs to be considered by all valuers on the team.


The values finally opined upon or concluded upon become part of the financial statements of the company and an input, which can influence the stock price, and/or financial stability measurement of the company. In addition, the values concluded will be tested for reasonableness on a periodic basis. If the values were overstated, they are subject to what is called an impairment, which has to be noted on the company’s financial statement.

If the values of the tangible and identifiable intangible assets are greater than the purchase price of the company, or the overall BEV, there is a potential for what is called “Negative Goodwill”. The amount, which is deemed “Negative Goodwill”, becomes a capital gain, which is recorded on the financial statements of the company.

Since the values concluded will become part of the financial statements, (and investors do not like surprises, such as unexpected impairment or an unanticipated capital gain) appropriate due diligence and care has to be taken so that the valuation results are reasonable considering ALL of the factors which should have been known as of the valuation date.

All members of the valuation team need to be in constant contact with each other and the individual values need to be communicated throughout the process.

Another factor that needs to be mentioned is that all financial reporting valuations are subject to review by the auditor of the company. The auditor’s job is to assure/opine that the process utilized by the valuers follows appropriate valuation techniques, adheres to the standards, and results in credible conclusions of value. This is why the appraisals need to be well documented. The appraiser should expect their work to be reviewed and be willing to provide data that backs up their conclusions.

Have you ever taught or developed any courses for M&E appraisers?

I have presented at the ASA international conference on many different occasions, presented a few webinars, teach ME201 and ME202 regularly and have developed the ME215 course. I have also presented numerous 1 and 2-day seminars on the topic of Fair Value, etc.

In addition, I have had several articles published in the MTS Journal as well as in a periodical called Valuation Strategies. My latest article in Valuation Strategies was entitled “The Importance of Performing a Business Enterprise Valuation” which was also converted to a webinar format and was presented at the 2012 ASA conference. I also wrote a chapter for the most recent MTS textbook and assisted in the editing of several chapters for that publication.

Are there any external factors driving these issues or risks (i.e. new regulations, lawsuits, client demands etc)?

The standards we follow are constantly changing and the valuer needs to keep abreast of these changes.  Currently, the biggest changes are coming on the international front (International Valuation Standards or IVS). Even though these are international, they will affect all appraisers, as the same standards are being adopted by some companies in North America. Also, Canada has adopted the IVS (through their adoption of the International Financial Reporting Standards).

Many of the audit firms are being audited themselves by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) which is the “auditor’s auditor”. On several occasions, the audit firms are being told that they have not done adequate due diligence to support the values on the balance sheet. As a result, the audit reviews are becoming more comprehensive and detailed. The appraiser needs to be aware of this and be prepared to answer the detailed questions in a way that assures the audit team that the valuation is materially correct and credible.

You are on the job site about to do an appraisal, what has to be in your tool box?

Before arriving on site, I like to have the following:

  • Detailed asset listing which has been reviewed in advance to identify which assets I would like to verify/inspect (I provide the client with the listing of assets I want to verify in advance)
  • Answers to a series of detailed questions I send out in advance so the client knows what data I am after while on site
  • A site layout
  • A general understanding of what the company does and the process they use to do it

I find that having this data ahead of time and holding calls with the client in advance helps prepare them for my visit and makes the time spent on site efficient for all parties. I always remind myself that my client has a business to run and my time on site takes time away from them doing their jobs

While on site, I make sure I have the following:

  • Fully charged-up laptop
  • Tape measure and flashlight (always!)
  • Floor layouts (large enough to read!)
  • Memory stick
  • Enough data entry forms for the project (I am old fashioned and take paper notes)
  • Enough pens and highlighters (yes…different colors for notes, etc. – I am nerdy that way!) for the project
  • GPS (never leave home without it!)
  • Calculator (for those times when the laptop is not convenient)
  • Proper safety gear (steel toe shoes, etc.)

The main factor is to be organized and professional. Clients want to deal with professionals and a professional is always prepared. Forgetting important tools or not dressing professionally or appropriately, does not make a good impression on a client.


ASA Travels to Seoul

Richard Berkemeier, ASA

Richard Berkemeier, ASA facilitates a two-day seminar with KOAMI.

In early February, ASA’s Machinery & Technical Specialties (MTS) Discipline participated in a two-day seminar in Seoul, South Korea with the Korea Association of Machinery Industry-KOAMI. This educational seminar was held at the Lexington Hotel and hosted about 30 attendees. This was ASA’s first event in South Korea.

Jim Hirt, Chief Executive Officer for the American Society of Appraisers was very pleased with the outcome of the seminar and the collaboration with KOAMI. He had this to say about ASA’s current trajectory with regards to similar international outreach, “This is another example of ASA extending it’s reach and becoming the leading professional appraisal organization that’s providing value worldwide.”

The purpose of the seminar was to share information, particularly on how ASA’s four Principal of Valuation (POV) courses for the Machinery & Technical Specialties Discipline could be used as a model for future Korean courses as well as to promote ASA and ASA education on an international level.

“We [KOAMI] were very satisfied with the contents and advice [given] by Mr. Richard Berkemeier, ASA regarding the course materials as well as the trends in the appraisal profession. KOAMI hopes to have further cooperation with ASA’s Machinery & Technical Specialties Discipline in the future.” said Young Tahk Park, the Executive Vice Chairman of Korea Association of Machinery Industry (KOAMI).

Attendees were made up of senior level, highly decorated professionals who have been involved in the project to develop the curriculum. Also attending the event was the first ASA member in South Korea, Chan Il Kim, ASA, who is a business valuer and author. One of the many exercises given to this group was to work together to translate the poem Black Swan by James Merrill. Richard Berkemeier, ASA, who facilitated the seminar and this exercise said, “The Black Swan is an exercise that combines appraisal skills including research, report writing and valuation. Students seem to be quite happy with the exercise at its conclusion.” To see the full translation, click here.

Approx. 30 senior level, highly decorated professionals attend this unique event.

Approx. 30 senior level, highly decorated professionals attend this unique event.