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Consultant Hires Finance Chief

BearingPoint Has Twice Restated 3rd-Quarter Results

By Ellen McCarthy
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, January 15, 2005; Page E03

BearingPoint Inc., a McLean consulting firm that has suffered from accounting problems, said yesterday that it had hired Joseph Corbett as its new chief financial officer.

Corbett, who previously served as chief financial officer of Intelsat Ltd., replaces Robert S. Falcone, who announced an abrupt early retirement in November, a week after BearingPoint's chief executive was replaced.

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"I think he's going to make our finance function world-class," Roderick C. McGeary, BearingPoint's new chief executive, said of Corbett. "Obviously we have faced challenges in that area, and we are bringing the appropriate resources to bear."

After releasing its third-quarter results, the company had to revise its financial statements twice, once to reduce two line items on its balance sheet by $3 million each because invoices had been counted twice, and once because it misclassified $92.9 million in assets.

In December the company told investors it had identified a "material weakness" in its financial controls as recently as Nov. 19, and that it may not be able to meet the financial accounting standards mandated under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.

"There is a lot to do . . . a lot on his plate right out of the box," said Joseph A. Vafi, an analyst with Jefferies & Co. He added that investors will be looking to see if Corbett can get "things in compliance with expected levels of financial controls."

Corbett, who is starting immediately, will be charged with overseeing all of the company's financial processes, McGeary said. In a way, the new position is a homecoming for Corbett, who worked at KPMG Peat Marwick between 1982 and 1994. BearingPoint is a former division of KPMG LLP that was spun off in early 2000. He also worked at McLean-based home-builder NVR Inc. before joining Intelsat in 1998.

A BearingPoint spokesman said Corbett was not available for comment yesterday and declined to disclose the terms of the new chief financial officer's contract or compensation. Shares of BearingPoint rose 19 cents yesterday to close at $7.75.

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