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Franchise watch: TaxAssist Accountants is looking to take its proven British success to the States

Franchise watch: TaxAssist Accountants is looking to take its proven British success to the States

A big business with a focus on small business.

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It’s rare to find a substantial gap in a very substantial market these days. And ‘forward-thinking’ isn’t a term typically used to describe an accounting firm.

But this isn’t your typical accounting firm.

British success story TaxAssist Accountants is bringing its focus on small business accounting to North America, following successful expansion into Ireland and Australia. Supplying a “chronically under-served, fragmented market” according to David Paulson, SVP, franchise development, this isn’t about simply being another tax prep agent – it’s about becoming a pillar of your local business community.

“TaxAssist franchisees help small business owners achieve more,” says Paulson. “This year more than ever we’ve seen how much support they need. Where do they go to get the advice that can help them survive and thrive?”

In the brand’s homeland, the answer is to a TaxAssist franchisee. The network is one of the largest accounting brands in the U.K. by turnover, and by some distance the biggest specializing in the small business market. Providing more than simply accounting services (though they do that, too), franchisees and their teams become trusted advisors to local business owners.

“Community has always been important, and more so after the events of 2020,” Paulson says. “That’s where our franchisees sit – at the heart of their community. They operate from a highly visible storefront, instantly setting them apart from the competition. It adds credibility, positions them alongside many of their clients, and it’s also a great marketing tool.

“We see the same thing in the U.S. that we saw in the U.K. – the small business marketplace is under-served and fragmented. It’s ready for a brand to take control of that space on a nationwide level.

“We’ve got the systems, the business model, and 25 years of innovation and success behind us. What we need is people who share our vision and passion for their community to drive the opportunity locally.”

If that sounds like you, there are two investment options available.

AREA REPRESENTATIVES

For ambitious management professionals or an existing firm looking to expand state-wide, becoming an area representative offers the chance to grow a very substantial business.

“They’ll operate in a development area of around six million population,” says Paulson, “and they’ll know the local culture and business landscape. That’s important to us.

“After starting the first franchise themselves, their main role turns to facilitating franchisee recruitment. They’re responsible for speaking to the leads in the development area, taking them through the discovery process to the point of due diligence.

“That’s when we’ll get involved to look after the legal side of franchise recruitment, train the franchisee, and deliver the franchise package to them.

The profit of the franchise fee is split 50/50.

“The developer is responsible for providing ongoing support locally to franchisees, in return for a split of the ongoing royalties. We’ve got partners in place for technical accounting support, so it’s more general franchise development and business support for the franchisees that will be needed.” Having demonstrated its ability to succeed overseas, TaxAssist has very carefully honed its area rep model for the U.S. and Canada. International expansion in Ireland and Australia was driven by existing accounting firms looking to expand, and ambitious individuals with multi-site ambitions. A global brand backing local expertise, energy, and personality is a recipe for success.

UNIT FRANCHISEES

Anyone looking to escape corporate life or grow a scalable, saleable business of their own will find a TaxAssist franchise provides a proven model, year-round income, and future saleable asset.

Suited to people with a strong financial services background, CPA-qualified individuals, or tax preparation professionals keen for scale and diversity, the franchise offers the opportunity to grow a substantial business that suits modern lifestyles.

“TaxAssist franchisees help small business owners achieve more”

“One of the things we’ve seen across all our markets, this year in particular, is a big focus on local,” says Paulson. “People want to work locally, not spend half their day traveling. They want to support their local community, help those around them. That’s exactly what a TaxAssist franchisee does.

“And unlike tax prep for individuals, this isn’t a seasonal business where you hope you can hire the right seasonal workers for 90 days, and then wonder what’s going to happen for the other nine months. There’s huge demand all year long for expert tax and accounting advice that helps business owners achieve their ambitions. And at the same time, you’re achieving your own.”

It’s a model that can build a valuable asset for the future, too. Franchisees own all their clients and manage a small team of professionals. Their focus is on business development, driving their team, and keeping key clients happy – not on the day-to-day accounting.

That’s one reason why TaxAssist practices in the U.K. have long been selling for higher multiples than is typical for the sector.

SUPPORT FOCUSED ON SUCCESS

Top-quality franchisee support has been the cornerstone the brand has been built on. Known as one of the best in British franchising, it’s won every major franchising award available in the U.K. over two decades.

Paulson says: “We’re especially proud to have been awarded the Five-star Franchisee Satisfaction award for a record seven years running. That’s based on an anonymous franchisee survey conducted independently and benchmarked against the rest of the franchise industry.

“Our business only succeeds when franchisees succeed. That’s engrained in the culture of TaxAssist, and it’s coming with us into every new international market we enter. Whether it’s technical training, marketing, business growth or continually evolving systems and software, we help franchisees grow better businesses.

“There’s an enormous opportunity here and we’re incredibly excited about it. We’ve already shown across international markets what’s possible at a local or regional level for franchisees. Just imagine what’s possible in the most entrepreneurial country of all?”

AT A GLANCE

Established: 1995

Number of franchised outlets: 425+

Location of units: U.K., Ireland, Australia

Available states: Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee

Investment range: $130,000 - $180,000

Minimum required capital: $75,000

Contact: recuitment@taxassist.com / 888 488 1336

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