Partner

Ken Harvey, CPA

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Bio

Meet Ken

Ken has more than 30 years of experience as an international tax advisor. His practice focuses on international tax structuring, cross-border investment, supply-chain management, transfer pricing planning, mergers and acquisitions, tax provisions and flow-through international planning. He works with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to venture-backed startups, flow-through enterprises and individuals. His industry focuses include the high-tech, biotech, media, manufacturing, real estate, crypto and blockchain sectors.

He is based in the San Francisco Bay Area, but his career has taken him all over the world, including three years as the founding tax partner for a Big Four practice in Hong Kong and China, and three years as the U.S. Tax Desk leader for a Big Four firm in Australia and New Zealand.

Prior to joining Armanino, Ken was a partner at Moss Adams and KPMG, and an executive director at EY. He was also a senior director of tax and treasury at WebGain, Inc. and a manager at Arthur Andersen.

Ken is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the California Society of Certified Public Accountants. He earned his Bachelor of Science and Master of Business Administration from the University of California, Davis.

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Experience

Professional History

Experience

  • Moss Adams
  • KPMG LLP
  • Ernst & Young LLP
  • WebGain, Inc.
  • Arthur Andersen LLP
  • Education

  • University of California, Davis
  • Q. Make a prediction; describe your vision of the future of the general business environment for your area of expertise or the industries you serve.
    High tech is going through a period of innovation, chaos and confusion, especially as it relates to taxes. There is a lot of movement globally to impose indirect taxes or data taxes upon companies operating internationally. The previous norms of taxation have broken down; every country has its own approach to this problem, and it creates increasing risk of double taxation. Compliance is complex, planning is difficult, and companies that leverage a trusted and valued business partner will be in a better position to navigate the impact to their business as new standards of taxation are implemented.
    Q. Without naming names, tell us about your favorite client and why you enjoyed working with them.
    My favorite client was a major manufacturing company that asked me to help them restructure their supply chain to increase tax and operational efficiency. It was a major project. Halfway through it, the company was acquired, and we then pivoted to the restructuring required as a result of the acquisition. Throughout the process, we stayed close to the client, and the client trusted us and appreciated the work we performed, our advice and counsel, and the high level of service we delivered. This was a classic win-win situation for the client and the service provider.
    Q. What keeps you up at night?
    Earlier in my career, I would get up in the middle of the night and start answering emails. One gets a lot of them overnight when clients are operating internationally. I eventually realized this was not sustainable and I needed to start maintaining a good work-life balance. You can’t give a client good advice when you are exhausted all of the time. I do sleep well at night now.
    Q. Describe your work style.
    I have always believed that you treat people how you like to be treated. I am a very straightforward person who tries to give honest feedback, and I expect the same from others, including every member of my team. I also believe in clear communication and the power of mentoring young professionals. I enjoy watching staff grow and go on to have great careers, and a lot of my former subordinates have indeed done so. Every project is an opportunity to teach, mentor and provide a learning experience. I always underscore the importance of getting to the heart of any matter and asking the right questions, which typically drives better solutions and measurable business results.
    Q. Who is (or was) the most influential person in your life?
    My father, whose name was also Ken Harvey, was quiet, humble, funny and always led by example. He had a difficult childhood, became a successful newspaper editor, was extremely well read, and raised some great children and gave us good values. He always impressed upon us that we should always respectfully speak our minds.
    Q. If you could pass on a nugget of wisdom to aspiring accountants or consultants, what would that be?
    The team succeeds together and can fail together. If you want to succeed, follow what interests you and become passionate about it. If you aren’t passionate about what you are doing, find something that you are passionate about.
    Q. What do you love most about your work?
    I enjoy the constant interaction among my clients and colleagues. In addition, I enjoy solving challenging tax problems by using my experience and teamwork and providing meaningful leadership.
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