Do I have to pay a deposit? If so, is it refundable?
If we offer you a franchise, you can reserve an exclusive postcode territory for 30 days for which we require a deposit of 10% of the Franchise Fee.
If you enter into a Franchise Agreement with us then the deposit will be credited against the Franchise Fee. If for any reason the Franchise Agreement is not signed before two weeks prior to the Commencement Date then we will agree to refund the deposit less a sum to cover any expenses incurred by us.
Do you train me? Who pays for my training?
Full and professional initial and ongoing training is provided to all franchisees. Accountancy and tax training is provided by in-house staff and specialist training partners for franchisees. The initial training course which lasts for six weeks is included in the Franchise Fee as are the specific follow up days: 44 days in total.
We also provide further update days, operations manuals, have an award-winning support website which offers our franchisees access to technical releases, marketing strategies and templates, online tutorials, advice, additional service providers, training materials, practice management tools and the ability to update your own website.
Is there an extra cost if I wish to bring my partner on the initial training course?
Yes, there will be an additional cost, because the Franchise Fee caters for only one person. We make our training course costs as reasonable as we can for partners/staff etc., because it is beneficial for both franchisee and franchisor to have a well-trained network. Please ask for further details on costs on or after your Discovery Day.
How much net profit can I earn from my operation?
This is really down to you but we want you to build up your turnover and profits consistently, aiming for 400+ clients with a turnover of £300,000 + after 5 years. Some franchisees are happy to maintain this level, comfortable with both the income generated and being relatively light touch on the business, while other franchisees continue to work full-time on the business pushing it past the £500,000 turnover level.
Our training covers the staffing requirements for your business and we expect a third of your turnover to cover the costs of running your franchise, with a third payable for your staff, leaving you with a third of your turnover as net profit.
What fees do I charge?
We give you guidance on the level of fees that you should charge your clients, but the final decision on the exact amount is up to you.
May I have a copy of your Franchise Agreement?
Yes, we will be pleased to give you a copy of the draft Franchise Agreement following the attendance of one of our Discovery Days.
What exclusive rights do you get?
You will be allocated an exclusive marketing territory defined by postcode boundaries. No other TaxAssist Accountant can market directly in your area or vice versa. When you and other franchisees carry out local advertising in publications covering more than one franchise area then the normal procedure is to share costs and divide out responses according to the geographical areas covered by you. However, should you receive a genuine recommendation from a potential client outside your exclusive marketing territory then you can act for that person.
I am a qualified accountant. Do I still need to go on all of the training and pay the full franchise fee?
We understand that you would naturally wish to avoid any unnecessary duplication and expenditure, but because we have correctly identified a niche in the market, our training is specifically tailored to address that niche and nothing else. Past experience has shown that even fully-qualified accountants will benefit from full participation in our training course.
I am a qualified accountant. Do I need a practising certificate?
When you join TaxAssist Accountants you will be engaging in public practice; therefore if you belong to an accountancy institute, they will almost certainly require you to obtain a practising certificate.
The features of a practising certificate vary from institute-to-institute, but generally they demonstrate that you’ve been a member for a specified number of years and are compliant with the institute’s regulations, for example, on Continuing Professional Development (CPD), ethics and professional indemnity insurance.
The application process and timescales to obtaining a practising certificate are dependent on your experience, the quality of your records, the institute to which you belong and other considerations. We would advise you to contact them direct to find out their requirements and how they apply to your personal circumstances.
We will discuss practising certificates further when you attend your discovery day.
I perceive that it will be too expensive to go into shop front premises in my area. Is it absolutely necessary for me to make this move?
You will have up until the end of your first year to find and move into a shopfront. We have franchisees who have managed to find good shop front premises when at first glance there appeared to be nothing remotely suitable. It is location, location, location translated as visibility, accessibility and affordability. This will help you to achieve the growth that we both seek.
Does this contract permit me to sell my business?
Yes, the client base is a considerable asset built up and owned by you. The value of your business is calculated as a multiple of your gross recurring fees. Current industry averages are between 0.8 and 1 multiplied by the gross recurring fees. The TaxAssist Accountants brand attracts a premium and we are achieving multiples up to 1.4 times annual billing. There are various deferred fees to consider which are laid out in our Franchise Agreement, which you would factor into your selling price.
For how long is the franchise granted and is there a fee payable on renewal?
The term of the Franchise Agreement is five years, but this is renewable by you every five years for an administration fee of £750 – assuming you have operated the franchise as set out in the Franchise Agreement including meeting your minimum targets. In most cases, we anticipate franchisees will renew the Franchise Agreement to continue the franchise every five years until they dispose of it at some future date. We also now offer at our discretion a 10-year plus Franchise Agreement.
What if I already have clients before becoming a TaxAssist Accountant?
We have recruited accountants who already have a block of clients of their own acquired during the period before they joined us. We have been asked to consider whether some relief can be given against charging our normal rates of Management Service Fees. Our policy for this scenario is subject to a minimum fee base of £5,000 being involved, we will allow the fees introduced or acquired to be kept in a separate pool and for one year only we will charge a 3% Management Service Fee on these fees. After twelve months these fees will be amalgamated with other fees acquired during the TaxAssist Accountants Franchise term to form one pool and full Management Service Fees will be payable on the total pool of fees.
Can I talk to some of your existing franchisees?
We would need your CV and Personal Information Form to assess your suitability before giving names and contact details out. We will give you access to the whole network, after you have attended a Discovery Day, and we would encourage you to speak to at least six franchisees as part of your research.
How do you justify your franchise fees and why should I join TaxAssist Accountants rather than one of the other accountancy franchises?
Formed in 1995, we are the leading franchised accountancy organisation with many years' experience of operating a substantial national network of branded offices that is well recognised and respected.
We have a highly visible presence with over 200 franchised areas across the country, operating from over 300 shops and offices. The shop front brand is supplemented by the many branded cars driving around the country, national advertising, online presence and marketing collateral. We constantly look to be at the forefront in terms of brand awareness, technical training and support for business growth. Our training courses, in particular TaxCalc, Practice Ignition and Receipt Bank software, as well as a raft of bolt-on relevant business services our franchisees can offer their clients at significantly discounted prices means in our opinion, that we are market leaders whose offering far outweighs the competition.
All of the Support Centre staff are committed to supporting the franchise network and their clients with no other business interests to take their focus away from the importance of assisting the network. The five executive directors have a breadth of business experience which they bring to the franchise. Karl Sandall had 26 years working for a major clearing bank, and is an ex-bank manager. Sarah Robertson is a Chartered Marketer who previously operated her own Marketing and PR company. Phil Sullivan spent 26 years with HSBC achieving Executive Management status before leaving to establish his own business providing corporate and commercial advisory services. James Mattam has spent his entire full-time career with TaxAssist and has vast experience in IT, marketing, business development and training. Daren Moore FCCA, has over 26 years of expertise in the accounting industry, having worked his way up to a member of the Management Board of Price Bailey, where he had an outstanding track record of achievement.
All financial information in this prospectus or website, with the exception of any financial information in the international section, is intended only for prospective franchisees in the US. This information is based on actual historic information provided to us by our operating franchisees in the United Kingdom, Ireland and Australia, and not elsewhere. Accordingly, if you are considering operating a TaxAssist franchise in any other country, do not review or rely on this information. It relates to US only, and the differences between the US and your country in respect of how long the system has been operating, the reputation and goodwill of the brand, the economic environment, competitors, industry associations and other factors make this US information inapplicable to you. If we have elected to provide financial information for your country, it will be expressly set out in the international section.
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