Now is the time to begin courting Chinese investors who are buying up companies and assets in the U.S., Richard Kopelman says.

Leaders from Habif, Arogeti & Wynne LLP, an independent Atlanta accounting firm with a strong international practice, will spend the coming week in China shoring up relationships with clients and seeking new ones.

On Oct. 17, Richard Kopelman, the firm’s CEO- and managing partner-elect, left for Beijing, where he’ll join his brother, Mitchell Kopelman, also partner-in-charge of HA&W’s tax practice, and Wendy Lu, a tax manager who hails from China.

In Beijing they’ll attend the annual conference of Baker Tilly International, an alliance of 149 accounting firms in 125 countries.

The agenda also includes client visits in Tianjin and Shenzhen, and they later plan to travel to Shanghai to make a presentation to more than 50 Chinese companies as part of a Georgia Department of Economic Development seminar on investing in the state.

China is just one of the markets from which the firm is seeing increased interest in investing in the United States, which is still seen as a safe haven with much of the world struggling, Richard Kopelman told Global Atlanta at the Next Generation Manufacturing conference Oct. 16.

“There are people all over the globe looking to a more stable banking environment, economic environment, currency environment,” said Mr. Kopelman, who is making his first visit to China. “Even though we have our problems, there’s a lot of silver lining.”

To deal with this influx, Habif, the largest independent, Georgia-based accounting firm, has 10 accountants on staff who speak native Mandarin Chinese.

Twenty-four other languages, including Korean, Spanish and Russian, are also spoken by a staff that includes 55 people who immigrated into the U.S. German accountants are serving new clients from that country, while the firm has also recently added two Japanese speakers.

“Very strategically, we bring in people with the language capabilities that grew up in those home countries and then we attack that market, and we’ve been successful across many countries,” Mr. Kopelman told Global Atlanta.

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As managing editor of Global Atlanta, Trevor has spent 15+ years reporting on Atlanta’s ties with the world. An avid traveler, he has undertaken trips to 30+ countries to uncover stories on the perils...