Located in Baraboo, Wisconsin, and founded in 1941, Accelerated Genetics is a global provider of bovine genetics, research, reproductive services, and solution-based animal health products. The company recently joined forces with Select Sires, Inc., to form a unified cooperative.
Like many agribusinesses, Accelerated Genetics operated under a number of long-standing assumptions regarding sales tax and local tax exemptions. Some of those assumptions were based on its own tax case with the Wisconsin Department of Revenue from the 1970s. When the company faced a recent state audit, the national tax and accounting firm they had engaged was unable to provide clarification on the taxability of their purchases. The audit went on for over a year. By coincidence, Wipfli called on Accelerated Genetics to discuss the possibility of working with them because Wipfli had successfully helped other agribusinesses with state and local tax matters. The company received advice based on Wipfli’s knowledge of the current statutes and outsourced their assistance to complete the audit.
Wipfli’s team of resources brought a deep understanding of state and local tax plus experience working in the agricultural industry to quickly dive into the audit engagement, completing it within three months.
During that time, Accelerated Genetics reached out to the state auditor to discuss Wipfli’s position. In the process, Wipfli’s knowledge of the exemptions to which Accelerated Genetics was entitled was further validated when even the state auditor required input from the Department’s internal technical staff to substantiate the availability of the exemption.
After the successful audit, Wipfli also helped Accelerated Genetics implement future procedures to claim the exemption and secure the refunds from post-audit periods.
Accelerated Genetics lacked the time, resources, and experience to manage a state and local tax audit. By confidently turning the audit process over to Wipfli, Accelerated Genetics’ management could maintain focus on day-to-day responsibilities and add to its cash flow with some unexpected audit results. What began as a potential tax liability of $190,000 for the audit period resulted in an $85,000 refund, along with an additional $50,000 refund for the subsequent periods.