David Freedman

David Freedman

New York, NY, US



Chief Financial Officer with expertise in Professional Services companies. Excellence in improving operational efficiency, collaboration with operations to drive business growth and financial reporting to support business decisions.



Robert A.M. Stern Architects, New York, NY, US, Chief Financial Officer

• Leadership role in ownership transition process from founder to next generation and subsequent ownership reallocations
• Creation of new employee bonus scheme and Partner incentive compensation program
• Leading real estate strategy approaching lease renewal date
• Development and rollout of tax efficient structures and tax credits with savings of $500k+ per year.
• Implementation and rollout of new systems – Project Management, Budgeting, Electronic AP system
• Review of insurance programs providing smarter risk coverage while also achieving annual savings in excess of $100k.
• Developed improved monthly reporting system and project review process.

Mar 2013 - current

WSP, New York, NY, US, Chief Financial Officer, WSP Cantor Seinuk

• Appointed by Group CEO and CFO to improve financial performance, systems and controls
• Overseeing expansion of business from $10m to $40m and doubling of staff in 3 years.
• Driving margin improvements through collaborations with technical staff – 5% gross margin, 10% net margin improvement since 2004
• Develop relationships and implemented financial training of Principals and other senior personnel to improve financial understanding across operations
• Identified, negotiated and closed 2008 acquisition of 25 people, $5m revenue operation to complement existing business. Integrated accounting systems and project reporting.
• Managed other functions including legal matters, insurance, HR issues and property matters.
• Manage a team of staff across 3 locations in USA and India covering finance, HR and IT functions.
• Reduction of overdue receivables days by 30 within a year, a $2m cash flow benefit. Implementation of new procedures to reduce future exposures.
• Introduction of new and upgraded systems for GL/Project accounting (Deltek) and Group reporting (Hyperion).
• Developed procedures and systems for benefits including Flexible Spending Accounts, 401k and payroll.
• Responsible for all aspects of the finance function including preparation of local accounts and reporting to Group in accordance with IFRS.
• Oversaw opening of new offices in LA (2005), Dubai (2006), Delhi (2008), and Mumbai (2009). Developed knowledge of trading requirements in each location. Responsible for financial performance of expanded operations.

Feb 2004 - Mar 2013

WSP, London, GB, Group Financial Controller

• Production and analysis of Group management accounts for plc. Board meetings and discussion at Executive Committee meetings.
• Treasury Management, responsibility for managing the overall cash position of the Group and compliance with banking covenants. Interrogation of cash flow forecasts for operating companies.
• Consolidation of Interim and Full year results, production of Interim Statement, Annual Report and presentations to institutional investors and analysts.
• Preparation of budgets, in discussion with key subsidiary personnel.
• Production of accounts and tax filings for all UK subsidiaries.
• Key point of Head Office contact with external auditors, dealing with all central audit issues.
• Member of Group Performance Committee, discussing and addressing Group performance.
• Key member of team during £72m acquisition of AB Jacobsen & Widmark, a listed Swedish company. Responsibilities included Due Diligence, banking negotiations, filing documentation.
• Selection, implementation, training and development of new management reporting tool for production of Group-wide consolidation and monthly management accounts.
• Re-negotiation of banking facilities for US Operations.
• Interim management of £10m turnover UK subsidiary following key staff departures.
• Internal audit review of compliance with controls and procedures.
• Member of Taskforce UK, a group young people representing all UK operating companies, with a brief to research and present to the plc. Board, Executive Committees and selected guests on topics of strategic importance to the Group

Sep 2000 - Feb 2004

Harcourt Publishers, London, GB, Financial Accountant

• Management of six staff with responsibility for provision of monthly management accounts, accompanying schedules and commentary to UK Directors and US parent company.
• Major role in preparation of budget and five year plan, including analysis of past and future performance and co-ordination of departmental expense submissions. Also involved in quarterly revisions to current year budget.
• Major projects include implementation of new budgeting package and interfacing of general ledger to consolidation package. Reporting cycle reduced from 5 to 3 ½ days.
• Primary contact for non-finance departments with respect to provision of financial information and training in use of financial systems.
• Adaptation of accounting policies in order to align with GAAP requirements of US parent company.

Sep 1999 - Sep 2000

HLB Kidsons Chartered Accountants, London, GB, Audit Senior

• In-charge role for many major clients, including UK listed companies.
• Due diligence work on a number of acquisition and financing deals.
• Wide experience of not-for-profit organizations.

Sep 1995 - Sep 1999


University of Leeds, Leeds, GB, Bachelors, Economics

Sep 1992 - Sep 1995

Areas of Specialization