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 NEW YORK, Jan. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- 1993 will see America's corporations continue to flirt with disaster "as long as line management and finance fail to work together as members of the same team," warns the new consulting firm Gunn Howell Markos Partners.
 "Finance departments have traditionally been relegated to a passive, secondary role as data collectors, when they should be active, decision- making partners," says Dr. Robert Howell, a leading authority on the practice and potential of financial management, and co-founder of the firm.
 "Organizations failing to recognize and utilize finance as one of the most powerful and productive strategic assets available to top management weaken their ability to compete effectively in today's marketplace, and jeopardize their survival tomorrow," cautions Dr. Howell.
 Dr. Howell, president of Howell Management Corporation and Robert W. Gunn and Michael G. Markos, co-founder of Gunn, Markos & Partners today jointly announced the consolidation of their two firms into a new consultancy, Gunn Howell Markos Partners.
 Mr. Markos said GHM Partners plans to be a catalyst for "revolutionary changes" in corporate thinking: "Our mission is to help companies maximize results through finance teamwork."
 "Unless traditional views of the finance function are abandoned," said Mr. Gunn, "corporations will continue to put themselves at a competitive disadvantage and risk disastrous consequences."
 Mr. Gunn added, "Finance management continues to embrace practices initiated at the end of War World II. The field has clung to its image of green eyeshades and bean-counters. While other areas have adopted lean, efficient techniques, finance breeds bureaucracy and creates layers of controls."
 GHM Partners founders' clients have included General Electric, Time Inc., Mobil, Johnson & Johnson, Eli Lilly, Inc., Du Pont, AT&T, Hallmark Cards, Union Carbide Corporation, Sears, Motorola, Bell Atlantic, American Brands, Sprint, Siemens, Deere & Co. and G.D. Searle.
 Mr. Gunn said GHM Partners will provide a menu of leading-edge research, education and consulting services, enabling major corporations to identify and utilize the untapped potential of their finance and accounting departments. Mr. Gunn said these companies must be fully committed to changing the "archaic and counterproductive" role of finance and accounting from data collector and historian to active involvement, with significant influence on the company's strategic planning and direction.
 Its innovative benchmarking studies and other initiativees enabled Gunn, Markos & Partners, which was formed in early 1991, to grow rapidly and to establish offices in New York, Boston, Atlanta, Dallas and San Francisco.
 Howell Management Corporation, has conducted major research studies and projects for the Institute of Management Accountants and the Financial Executives Institute. It was formed 15 years ago by Dr. Howell, who is also a clinical professor of management and accounting at New York University's Stern School of Business.
 Before founding Gunn, Markos & Partners, both Mr. Gunn and Mr. Markos had been with A.T. Kearney, a management consulting firm.
 Mr. Gunn had initiated a series of pioneering "best practice" research projects with his major corporate clients. The results, which defined new management models for controllership, the audit function and several key accounting and transaction activities, are also being used to reposition management accountants to work more effectively with top corporate leadership. In addition, Mr. Gunn hosts the Financial Management Network's "Best Practice" video series.
 Mr. Markos, who had been with A.T. Kearney for 14 years, also specialized in identifying and implementing "best practices" in the financial function. He has been a key architect of the new management model of finance, which calls for a drastic redistribution of finance function resources.
 Dr. Howell's management consulting activities are directed toward helping finance and accounting executives chart a path to world class practices. He has led several study missions to Japan, where he benchmarked Japanese finance and accounting practices. He believes that Japan's leading companies are demonstrating a competitive advantage in finance and accounting, just as they have in quality, productivity and employee involvement.
 NOTE TO EDITORS: The failure to use finance teamwork puts America's great corporations at great risk. If you would like to speak with a Gunn Howell Markos partner, please contact Chris Godek at 212-832-8858.
 -0- 1/11/93
 /CONTACT: Chris Godek of Berman Godek Communications, 212-832-8858, for Gunn Howell Markos Partners/

CO: Gunn Howell Markos Partners ST: New York IN: FIN SU: ECO

AH -- NY041 -- 3525 01/11/93 12:01 EST
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Date:Jan 11, 1993

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