Success Stories

Culver's, Dale Hellenbrand Franchise: Financial Accounting Outsourcing and Tax Consulting

Satisfying an owner’s appetite for more floor time, less desk time.

Culver's
Dale Hellenbrand, Owner
“Wipfli has saved me hours and hours, week in and week out. I have more time to spend in the restaurants, which is where I want to be...and where an owner should be. That’s been a huge bonus for me. I sleep much better knowing Wipfli’s got my back.”
 

For over 30 years, Culver's guests have been treated to cooked-to-order food made with farm-fresh ingredients, served with a smile. The ever-expanding franchise system now numbers more than 600 family-owned and operated restaurants in 24 states. The restaurants' nationally-recognized customer service is based on small-town, Midwestern values, genuine friendliness and an unwavering commitment to quality. Signature items include the award-winning ButterBurger®, made from fresh, never frozen, beef, and Fresh Frozen Custard, including the famous Flavor of the Day program. For more information, visit www.culvers.comwww.culvers.com/facebookwww.twitter.com/culvershttps://plus.google.com/+culvers or www.instagram.com/culvers.

Situation

Culver’s is well known for quality food, great customer service, and of course, the Butter Burger. A three-star operator, Dale Hellenbrand has been a Culver’s employee since 1997 and a Culver’s franchise owner in the greater St. Louis, Missouri, area since 2006. With a store in Arnold and another in Eureka, his third location in Crestwood opened in January 2013.

In addition to his owner duties, Hellenbrand was still paying all the bills, spending valuable time away from managing his restaurants. Unhappy with the continued time constraints, costs, and the return on his investment, he began seeking a new accounting firm. Busy with two locations and opening a third, Hellenbrand contacted Wipfli.

Strategy

As Wipfli transitioned to become Hellenbrand’s back office, the team detailed exactly how the new outsourcing arrangement would work and flow. Wipfli walked through the FAO process, described the differences between the work prior and the work ahead, and established all expectations up front. Wipfli then delivered comprehensive bookkeeping and accounting services for Hellenbrand’s overall business, including:

  • Processing and payment of vendor bills.
  • Payroll accounting, processing, and reporting.
  • Managing cash flow and keeping accounts up to date.
  • Reconciling all bank and credit card accounts monthly.
  • Preparing monthly financial reports and custom reports for Culver’s corporate offices.
  • Providing tax planning, consulting, and compliance.
  • Wipfli also established an online portal giving Hellenbrand mobile capabilities and allowing him to check in with approvals and see his business numbers from anywhere, at any time.

Benefits

With Wipfli’s simple and easy-to-use FAO service, Hellenbrand has realized significant cost savings and time savings. He has gained back all the valuable time formerly spent paying the bills, yet he still sees and approves them, giving him a complete handle on his business.

Comforted knowing he has professionals taking care of his back office, Hellenbrand now spends more time in his restaurants working with his management team and coaching them on decision-making skills that truly benefit the business and its bottom line.

 

Relationship Executive(s)

Kurt R. Krueger, CPA, Partner