Liberty Tax Service is a United States-based company specializing in the preparation of tax returns for individuals and small businesses, it is the third largest tax preparation franchise in the United States. The company began in Canada in 1997 when John Hewitt, co-founder of Jackson Hewitt, acquired a Canadian tax franchisor, U&R Tax Depot. In 1998, the company became Liberty Tax Service and opened 5 offices in the United States. Liberty Tax Service is the primary subsidiary of Liberty Tax, Inc., a NASDAQ-traded company. Liberty Tax Service appeared on Forbes "Top 20 Franchises for the Buck" in 2012. Liberty Tax Service is well known for its wavers, people in Statue of Liberty costumes and Uncle Sam costumes, used as a form of guerilla marketing. On October 28, 2011, a flash mob of costumed Lady Libertys danced in Times Square to promote Liberty Tax Service and celebrate the anniversary of the Statue of Liberty. John Hewitt began his career at H&R Block as a tax preparer in 1969 and was later promoted to regional director of 250 offices. In 1982, he went on to found Jackson Hewitt Tax Service, which he grew to over 1,300 offices until it was sold for $483 million in 1997.