TaxAssist retains 21st place in industry rankings

October 18, 2020

TaxAssist Accountants’ strong performance has seen the network of small business specialists maintain the 21st place in the highly regarded Accountancy Age industry league table with a 9% increase in fee income, up from £41.5m to £45.3m.

 
Celebrating excellence in accountancy practice, the Accountancy Age Top 50+50 spotlights the top accountancy firms in the UK ranking them according to UK fee income for the last financial year.

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Karl Sandall, Group Chief Executive Director at the TaxAssist Group, said: “We’re pleased to have retained our position at 21, because of a strong growth rate that has outpaced many other firms.

“I suspect we will see some very different results in the sector off the back of this year, but we remain optimistic, having witnessed a gradual recovery since lockdown in terms of new client numbers and sales. This is due to the sustained support given to our accountants and their clients and the excellent efforts of everyone throughout the network to keep trading.

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“We are continuing to recruit many new franchisees to our network who can see the value of our brand name and the evolving and comprehensive support that we provide. Small business clients have needed our assistance like never before to help them to survive and thrive and our network of high street shops with their highly visible presence are ideally placed to service this increase in demand.

“I feel confident that our adoption of a best-in-class technology suite combined with our full-service offering, including a range of complementary services which both attract and support clients, bodes well for future performance.”

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In her analysis, Beth Mason of Accountancy Age stated that the data reveals a “robust performance from UK firms despite (the) challenging environment”. She goes on to predict: “Over the course of 2021 we may see growth in a number of areas, with sustained investment in technology and additional services as firms recognise the importance of innovation to capture a greater share of the market.”

To see the list of the Top 50 firms and an analysis by Accountancy Age click here.

John Mayer celebrates 20 years of business success

October 2, 2020

A lot has changed since John Mayer joined TaxAssist Accountants in 2000, but he has absolutely no regrets.

 
John Mayer, who operates his TaxAssist Accountants franchise from Weston-Super-Mare in Somerset, has recently celebrated 20 years at the helm of his flourishing practice. To congratulate him, the Support Centre staff in Norwich sent a hamper to mark the occasion.

John said: “A big thank you for the gift of the Fortnum & Masons hamper celebrating my 20 years as a TaxAssist Accountants franchisee, it is very gratefully received.

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“Where has the last 20 years gone! I am so thankful I joined TaxAssist and is a decision I will never regret. It has given myself and my family a good, secure living and has allowed me to meet many great people, both clients and within the franchise.

“It has been challenging at times, sometimes hard work, but over John Mayerriding all of this, vastly enjoyable, extremely rewarding, and something I am very proud to be associated with.

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“I have seen the franchise grow from around £4m fee bank to its current £51m and I like to think I have put a little part into its growth.

“I was going to organise a 20-year celebration party this October, and get my band to play as I did with the 15 year-celebration. Sadly, due to Covid-19 that has to be put on hold until next year, but it should be a party to remember when it does happen!”

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Karl Sandall, the TaxAssist Group Chief Executive Director, said: “It has been a pleasure to work with and get to know John over the last 20 years and to help him build the substantial practice which he heads up today. He has always been eager to embrace change and keep up with the times and I congratulate him on his many years of business success. I would also like to thank him for the contribution he has made to the franchise over the years.”

If you are interested in joining TaxAssist Accountants, we are holding monthly Virtual Discovery Days where you can spend a day with the team to find out more about the business opportunity and support on offer.

New TaxAssist Accountants shop opens in Southend-on-Sea

September 13, 2020

Mark Gibbs has opened a new TaxAssist Accountants walk-in tax and accountancy shop serving small businesses and individual tax paying clients in the Westcliff-on-Sea and Southend-on-Sea areas.

 
Mark said: “It’s great to finally have the shop open and we’ve already had lots of people walk in and comment on how good the shop looks. One of the major reasons for joining TaxAssist Accountants was the modern, fresh look of the shops, which can so effectively showcase the services we offer and provide a convenient meeting place for clients. I look forward to welcoming new and existing clients to have a look round.

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“I have lived in the area most of my life and have a good understanding of the local business environment and I feel passionate about supporting my fellow small businesses through the coronavirus pandemic and beyond. I would encourage anyone interested in finding out more about how we can help, to contact us for a free initial consultation – either face-to face, by telephone or online.
“We provide a comprehensive tax, accountancy and advisory service and can talk clients through a range of software solutions, to help them select the right package for their needs.”

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If you are interested in finding out more about joining TaxAssist Accountants, regular Virtual Discovery Days are held, where you can find out more about the technical, marketing and business development support on offer.

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New TaxAssist Accountants shop opens in Huntingdon

August 28, 2020

Charlie Walker has opened a new walk-in small business tax and accountancy shop on 129 High Street in Huntingdon, to operate alongside his existing one in Bedford.

 
Charlie Walker, like all TaxAssist Accountants, has been incredibly busy over the last six months, helping his over 200 clients to navigate their way through the coronavirus pandemic. However, keen to continue with his planned expansion, he has now opened his second shop in Huntingdon.

“It really was the perfect shop in the perfect location and will provide the ideal environment for me to meet with potential and existing clients,” explains Charlie.

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“Both of my shops are open for clients to walk-in and we provide hand sanitiser, wear masks and have installed protective screens for face-to-face client meetings, although we also offer telephone and online meetings for those clients that would prefer this method at this time. Our aim is to be as flexible and helpful as possible. Do get in contact if you’d like a free initial consultation.”

Charlie is looking positively on the future for his and his clients’ businesses. “Clearly the pandemic has caused a huge global shock, but with my services very much in demand, I believe now is the right time to expand, so that more businesses can benefit from our expertise.”

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Knowing that there is a desperate need for guidance and support right now, Charlie recently jumped at the chance when he was offered his own monthly, one-hour radio show on Huntingdon Community Radio after a number of appearances as a business contributor on BBC Three Counties Radio last year. He hopes to have a local business section, as well as a national business update and special guests each month. The show is due to begin in the Autumn.

“I’m passionate about helping the businesses in my area and I’m looking forward to having the opportunity to offer the benefits of my business and accountancy experience, face-to-face, online and now via the air waves!”

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Record breaking July for new business client leads

August 18, 2020

As people turn to accountants for advice and guidance during the COVID-19 pandemic, TaxAssist Accountants registers its highest ever number of July new business client leads.

 
In the most turbulent of times, small business specialists TaxAssist Accountants have proved to be an essential hub for local business communities as a result of unsurpassed levels of support and communication.

With over 230 franchises across the UK looking after more than 76,000 clients, TaxAssist Accountants has seen its services in demand like never before.

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The Norwich-based Support Centre team is working tirelessly to ensure its franchisees have correct and up-to-date information to meet its network’s clients’ requests for help, and the timely advice and online and centralised email campaigns offered by TaxAssist Accountants during the pandemic have been very well received from clients who have praised the proactive help and advice offered.

James Mattam, Group Business Development Director at TaxAssist Accountants said: “July was an unprecedented month for new business client leads generated by the Support Centre, with over 800 qualified by our team of call handlers.

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“All of our accountants have been incredibly busy supporting their clients through the COVID-19 crisis, with grant applications, funding and furloughing claims and cash flow advice. As a result of the quality, responsive service our network has offered, we are receiving a huge number of new business enquiries and referrals from existing clients, happy to recommend TaxAssist’s services. We are also receiving calls from businesses looking to migrate to our network who are feeling unsupported by their current accountant in these challenging times.

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“All of our accountants are open for business and offer flexible ways to meet, either over the phone, via video consultation or safely in one of our shops or offices. We provide a full service offering to clients utilising the very latest online software solutions, taking the guesswork out of managing financial business records. We regularly hear back from clients that they enjoy the ease and clarity of the software, coupled with the personal, local service that our accountants provide.

“I’d encourage anyone wanting to find out more about TaxAssist’s services, or to request a free initial consultation to give the team a call on 0800 05 23 555.”

TaxAssist Accountants announced as finalist for major franchise award

July 31, 2020

TaxAssist Accountants has been shortlisted for the Franchisor of the Year accolade at the bfa HSBC British Franchise Awards, to be held at the Vox, Birmingham, on 30th November.

 
TaxAssist Accountants is the UK’s largest network of small business specialist accountants, with more than 385 shops and offices servicing 76,000 clients. It is also the UK’s leading tax and accountancy franchise, with previous British Franchise Association (bfa) successes including winning Franchisor of the Year in 2010, as well as Bronze in 2015 and Silver in 2008 and 2009.

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It will be competing with five other well-known franchise brands before a judging panel of industry experts and receiving a nomination is an achievement in itself, proving the business works ethically and in the best interests of franchisees and staff.

Karl Sandall, Group Chief Executive said: “At a time of such economic and social turmoil, it is very welcome good news to have once again been shortlisted as a finalist for this prestigious award, and very rewarding for the 60 strong Support Team to have their hard work and achievements recognised in this way.

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“We received fantastic feedback from our franchisees and their clients on the support provided prior to and during the COVID-19 pandemic, and we look forward to putting forward a very strong case as to why we should win to the judging panel.”

Pip Wilkins QFP, CEO of the bfa, said: “TaxAssist Accountants has been a long-serving member of the bfa, adhering to an airtight, ethical operation. In 2019, network sales grew by 9%, as did client numbers and recruitment figures as, despite a struggling high street, the business excelled.”

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Andrew Brattesani, Head of Franchising, HSBC, said: “TaxAssist’s initial training for new franchisees and ongoing support is rigorous, with other courses available and optional for franchisees and staff, such as the Management Development Diploma, which has had a very good take up.”

If you are interested in joining TaxAssist Accountants, it is holding monthly Virtual Discovery Days where you can spend a day with the team to find out more about the business opportunity and support on offer.

TaxAssist Accountants drives up growth with new client campaigns

July 20, 2020

New advertising campaigns highlight the benefits of being a client of a proactive and innovative network of accountants.

 
On the back of successfully delivering services, support and guidance to its 77,000 clients during the COVID-19 pandemic, TaxAssist Accountants is launching new campaigns to attract new business start-ups and those wishing to switch over to a more proactive and supportive accountant.

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James Mattam, Group Business Development Director at TaxAssist Accountants, explains, “We’ve had some fantastic feedback from the network’s clients on the speed and comprehensiveness of communications we’ve been providing. The support delivered by the accountants during the lockdown, has made a huge difference to them personally and professionally, as well as ensuring their business’ ability to survive.

“We are now targeting those looking to start a business and business owners who feel unsupported by their current accountant through this challenging time. We believe they will benefit enormously from the quality and breadth of services that TaxAssist Accountants offers, including the very latest software and apps.

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“We have also been running a series of webinars to raise our profile with business start-ups, the first of which, ‘Starting a Business’, was held on 1st July. We have also created a new dedicated client hub on our website full of useful content to support clients to manage their business’ finances and to work closely with their accountant in the post COVID-19 environment.”

TaxAssist Accountants across the UK have been incredibly busy over the last few months helping clients with grants, funding applications and furloughing claims. All have continued to fully operate, reporting new business enquiries and client referrals throughout lockdown. Clients can make an appointment either via telephone consultation, video consultation or as they gradually begin to re-open, by visiting a shop or office.

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TaxAssist Accountants has ambitious growth plans and also wants to talk to retiring accountants, or those seeking to sell their practices at this time. They can be introduced to a TaxAssist Accountant who is interested in buying a block of fees and will incur no broker fees by selling directly to the franchisee local to them.

New TaxAssist Accountants shop opens in Clacton-on-Sea

July 7, 2020

Stuart Burge has opened a shop at 62-64 Carnarvon Road, Clacton-on-Sea.

 
Stuart Burge, who has been temporarily operating his practice from home during lockdown, has now opened his new small business tax and accountancy shop, for businesses in the Clacton-on-Sea, Frinton-on-Sea, Harwich and Manningtree areas.

Stuart explains: “It’s been quite an undertaking to get the shop refurbished and ready for clients during these unprecedented times, but I’m really pleased with the final result and excited for the future.

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“The shop looks great and is really inviting with a central position in town with plenty of parking nearby. It showcases our services brilliantly and will be a great draw for those seeking the services of a modern accountant and business adviser utilising the very latest in software and technology with the many time and financial efficiencies this can bring.

“As a small business owner myself, I know and understand what my clients are going through right now, and I’m here to help them navigate their way through the months and years ahead. I’d encourage anyone interested in finding out more about us to pop in for a free initial consultation, but we can also offer telephone and online meetings for those clients that would prefer this method at this time.”

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TaxAssist Accountants prides itself on the level of care and service it provides to clients. Each accountant in the network has been incredibly busy in these exceptional times, providing a huge amount of additional support to clients who have been seeking clarity and guidance around grants, accessing funding and furloughing staff during the pandemic.

A COVID-19 hub has been created on the TaxAssist website with all of the latest news and guidance, and clients are kept up-to-date via text messages, emails and webinars, explaining the latest government announcements and how it affects them.

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TaxAssist Accountants offers £4,000 cash back on franchise fee

June 30, 2020

With its initial training course now running virtually, TaxAssist Accountants is pleased to offer a cash back deal to new franchisees.

 
Due to social distancing measures caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, TaxAssist Accountants is running a modified initial training course online, making use of technology to provide an engaging and interactive course that will still fully prepare franchisees for opening their practices.

Karl Sandall, Group Chief Executive Director said: “Our first virtual training course started on June 15th with two new franchisees, who having done their research and obtained their funding, are keen to get started on their journey with TaxAssist Accountants.

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“Obviously these are unprecedented times, so we are pleased to be able to offer the £4,000 cash back on our franchise fee, in recognition of the change in setting for the training course. This offering will be available for as long as we choose to run the course virtually. We do, however, look forward to welcoming any new joiners back to the Support Centre for a face-to-face follow up as soon as it is safe to do so.”

Samantha Skyring, Senior Training and Communications Manager at the TaxAssist Accountants Support Centre, explained what new franchisees can expect from the course.

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“We have had to completely overhaul the training course,” said Samantha. “which has been quite an undertaking, but vital, as we want to make sure we are able to stay engaged with each new franchisee and establish a good rapport as we would normally on our face-to-face course.

“This is important so our new franchisees get to know us all well and feel comfortable to ask us questions throughout the course. We will be using video calls, telephone, emails, instant chat features, live and recorded videos, as well as software such as Sway, Teams and Zoom to alternate our communication channels, as we introduce different members of the team and new topics. We obviously also want to make the course as enjoyable as possible, so we have designed it so that our delegates will not be sitting in front of their computer for hours on end.”

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If you are interested in joining TaxAssist Accountants, monthly Virtual Discovery Days are being held, where you can spend a day with the team to find out more about the business opportunity and support on offer.

TaxAssist Accountants launches in the USA

May 14, 2020

Following successful expansion to the Republic of Ireland and Australia, the UK’s largest network of small business specialist accountants is now launching in the USA.

 
Having proven that the TaxAssist Accountants concept can be successfully replicated in the UK, the Republic of Ireland and Australia, TaxAssist is now offering Area Representative and single-unit franchise rights to selected states in the USA.

Karl Sandall, Group Chief Executive Director, says: “After years of careful research and planning, I am pleased to advise that we have completed the formation of TaxAssist Direct USA Inc. This has been a long-held wish of mine personally and always the company’s long-term aim, with our successful franchise model offering massive potential.”

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The shareholders are The TaxAssist Direct Group Ltd (85%), Hal and Jamie Gross (7.5%), and Mike and Penny Melling (7.5%).

Hal Gross, based in New Jersey, holds the role of President, with Mike Melling as Director. Karl Sandall, Phil Sullivan and John Chambers, (who are all Directors of The TaxAssist Direct Group in the UK) will also act as Directors for TaxAssist Direct USA Inc.

Hal is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) with extensive experience in risk, audit and regulatory leadership roles at major global financial institutions including most recently at UBS’ Investment Bank and Citi, where he held senior positions in the Corporate and Investment Banking operational risk teams. Earlier in his career Hal also held management roles in American Express audit after starting his career in public accounting at Main Hurdman (KPMG).

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“Hal recognised the huge opportunity that TaxAssist Accountants would offer to develop and grow accounting and advisory services for small businesses in the USA,” explains Karl, “and with a strong corporate and financial background, in Hal, we saw the ideal candidate to partner with, to launch, build and mature the TaxAssist Accountants brand across the US through the Area Representative model.”

Mike Melling has had a 35-year career as a senior financial services executive in the UK, USA and Asia for American Express, GE Capital and Marsh & McLennan including board-level roles for subsidiary companies. He also served as UK President for operational consultancy Alexander Proudfoot Company serving large and mid-capitalisation businesses.TaxAssist Accountants

As well as having extensive international business experience, Mike is also a successful TaxAssist Accountants franchisee in the UK, having purchased a large single location practice resale for £1m in 2012, followed by a further resale purchase in 2015.

Karl explains: “Mike brings with him a huge amount of energy, experience and expertise. He will be able to share best practice, having successfully invested in staff, technology and client acquisition to build his practice up to a 20-person team serving nearly 2,000 small businesses, Directors and individual clients from seven TaxAssist shops and offices.”

TaxAssist is expecting a surge of interest in franchising in the USA during and post the coronavirus pandemic, as people re-think their lives.

“These are unprecedented times for everyone, but we have a very sound business model, and our services have never been in more demand, as people look to their accountant for advice and guidance during the COVID-19 pandemic, hence our confidence in continuing with our plans to launch the franchise in the USA.

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“Our business model is going to appeal to CPA-qualified accountants working in industry, individuals with a strong financial services or banking background, as well as those that already own an accounting practice they wish to develop as part of a global brand. We are looking for people who are capable of setting themselves up in business, but see the value in the brand, training, support and systems that investing in a franchise with TaxAssist Accountants brings.”

David Paulson, Senior Vice President, Franchise Development, will be seconded to New Jersey later this year, where the USA Support Centre will be based. David is working behind the scenes with the TaxAssist International Team and investors to do as much preparation as possible in readiness for the official launch which will take place at the 2020 International Franchise Online Expo on May 28-30.

The global TaxAssist network supports more than 265 franchised areas with 425 shops and offices, servicing more than 86,000 small businesses and self-employed individuals. Global annual billings are in excess of £56m.