Are you an accountant or a commercially experienced individual looking to build a profitable and saleable business?
If so, then why not consider running your own accountancy practice with innovative and award winning TaxAssist Accountants. Accountancy fee banks are genuinely in demand and are a real asset for your future whether you have a plan of 5 years, 10 years or much longer.
TaxAssist Accountants is Ireland’s largest network of accountants specialising in servicing the needs of small businesses and self-employed individuals, and the leading tax and accountancy franchise in Ireland. It offers brand credibility from day one, mixed with professional initial and ongoing training and support for you and your staff.
Background and the business model in action
Launched in Ireland in 2009, TaxAssist has continued to see double digit growth in and out of the recession, where the accountancy industry has often stagnated or declined. The franchise now has over 20 franchised areas and has gone from strength to strength, now servicing over 6,500 clients with a fee bank of over €6 million.
The business model is based on the simple principles of offering a convenient, local, first class service to small business clients.
How big is the market?
According to the latest figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO), there are 237,753 Small Medium & Enterprises active in Ireland, 219,880 of these are classified as ‘micro’ businesses i.e. having less than 10 employees. We operate in a very large, buoyant market that has traditionally been over charged and under serviced.
Why a shopfront?
The intention of the TaxAssist shop is to depart from the look and characteristics of traditional accountancy practices, providing an accessible and welcoming location for small business clients or prospective clients to meet with an accountant at their convenience. Clients like this new ‘retail’ experience with an Accountant; in fact 1 out of every 3 of our clients come from the shopfront.
‘TaxAssist Accountants, Dundrum, Dublin.’
A recognised brand
One of the major reasons Accountants chose to join TaxAssist is because of our brand and marketing expertise. From our support centre in Dublin we employ staff who are running nationwide marketing campaigns across several mediums including but not limited to; PR, sponsorship, national radio advertising and most importantly a large and focused digital marketing campaign.
This advertising ensures that small businesses will see the brand and recognise our name in the marketplace. It also gets the phone ringing daily with direct enquiries from clients who need an Accountant. These enquires are qualified by us and then sent on to you to meet with; this supply of leads is a major advantage in the market.
As well as this national marketing, franchisees also benefit from having everything they need to run their own local marketing campaigns, your own website, a social media presence, PR coverage, advert templates, initial and ongoing training, shopfront searches and a comprehensive online presence. These and other initiatives will generate leads (business opportunities).
‘Minister Frances Fitzgerald and Don O’Connell (owner of TaxAssist Lucan) at the official launch of our Lucan location’
Your role is fundamentally to develop the practice. In order to work on the business rather than in it, you must be able to build a team of staff to assist with work production, as your time will be spent as principal of the business, networking, managing staff and meeting with clients. When you are ready to sell your practice, we can help you realise the value of your asset and you have the knowledge that we have on many occasions sold practices in excess of the industry norms.
TaxAssist works with you both in creating an initial business plan and supporting you to achieve it.
Business development will depend on your own ambition, but franchisees should aim to build up turnover and profits consistently, aiming after 5 years, for a turnover of €300,000 plus. We expect a third of your turnover to cover staff costs, another third to cover the other costs associated with running your business and the final third being your profit.
After 5 years some franchisees are happy to maintain this level, comfortable with the income generated from the business, whilst other franchisees continue to drive their business forward, by continuing to be proactive with networking and marketing strategies, pushing past the €500,000 turnover level.
This level of success can be achieved and in some cases is exceeded.
Training & Support
The majority of our franchisees came to us with strong professional backgrounds but they may have been out of practice a long time or they may have trained in a different industry.
Our Dublin based Support Centre offers a complete range of training in technical, marketing and business development support. Our initial training course is delivered by qualified in-house experts, working alongside selected third party specialist training partners.
The 6 week residential course covers:
Accounts production and taxation for sole traders and partnerships
Practice management and social media
Sales, marketing and recruitment
Further training is provided at months 2,3 and 6, as well as ongoing regional courses and CPD for you and your staff.The Support Centre offers a complete range of professional, experienced and qualified personnel to fully support your business endeavours. Full training, support and guidance are given to operate your business under the TaxAssist Accountants brand name.
TaxAssist Accountants has won various industry awards including ‘Marketing Campaign of the year’ (2016) at the Irish Franchise Awards as well as ‘Franchising Woman of the year (2015)’ .
As well as this we have been finalists in the Irish Accountancy Awards and Eircom spiders.
What our franchisees say
Clive Aherne – TaxAssist Accountants franchisee in Cork:
“I joined TaxAssist Accountants in December 2009 and opened for business in April 2010. The growth of my business has been in line with my expectations and business plan. Year-on-year my practice continues to grow and the number and quality of leads being generated is increasing steadily. I am on course to employ 10 staff from my offices in Cork.
Part of this I put down to the shop front as it provides a highly visible shopfront in a prominent location. I have had great support from the Support Centre, who are always on hand to answer any queries I have or to bounce ideas off of, whether these are technical or general practice management queries. The biggest help though has been in the sales and marketing area, as like most other accountants marketing would not previously have been my strong point.
Being part of TaxAssist Accountants has given me access to excellent sales and marketing training, tried and tested campaigns and adverts and sales approaches that do work. I have a high conversion rate of leads and was delighted to receive the Franchisee of the Year award for 2014. My advice to anyone considering the franchise option would be to talk to as many people as possible before you make your decision as the more information you have the better. Prepare a detailed business plan and review it regularly. You will be surprised how accurate your projections will eventually get as you gain year on year experience.’
Roy Finucane- TaxAssist Accountants Limerick:
‘Having made a lifestyle choice to move home from Dublin, I made the decision to consider self-employment and specifically franchising. It was as a result of this, I came across TaxAssist Accountants and I haven’t looked back since joining in July 2010. I opened my shop in November 2010 and my business has grown year on year and I now employ four people. I can safely say I would not have built up such a business was it not for the support of the franchise model, the shop front visibility in a prominent location being the major contributor.
Active sales and marketing have also been a key contributor to sales growth. While it wouldn’t come natural to me, you really have to embrace the brands USP’s and immerse yourself in the local business community. This is made easier by the constant support that I have received from the Support Centre. Being part of TaxAssist Accountants has given me access to excellent sales and marketing training, tried and tested campaigns and adverts and sales approaches that do work.
For me, not being from a traditional accounting background, it was great comfort to know the helpdesk was always at hand to assist with any technical queries. I have had great support from the Support Centre, that is always on hand to answer any queries I have, or to bounce ideas off of, whether these are technical or general practice management queries.’
The franchise fee to join TaxAssist Accountants is €39,450 plus VAT. You will need access to €60,000 if you wish to operate from an office initially and up to €100,000 to operate from a shop. These figures will be dependent on location and level of personal drawings required which will vary from person to person.
We have strong working relationships with the major banks and they are very supportive of our franchise. They will typically lend up to 60% of the total investment, so you will need to have a minimum of 40% personal cash available.
We work closely with each individual throughout the business planning stage to establish the level of investment required for you in your area. Remember, this investment will cover your working capital requirements, in addition to your own personal requirements, and whilst you are building your fee bank, you are also building a valuable asset for when you decide to exit the franchise.
We still have territories available across Ireland including Dublin so if you would like to find out more, please contact us by completing the form below to book onto a discovery day. Once you have attended a discovery day we will provide you with a full list of our franchisees for you to speak with as part of your research.