May I have a copy of your Franchise Agreement?
Yes, we will be pleased to give you a copy of the draft agreement following your discovery day.
Can I talk to some of your existing franchisees?
We would need your CV and Application 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 6 franchisees as part of your research.
What if I already have clients before becoming a TaxAssist Accountant?
We have taken on some 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 two years only we will not charge Management Service Fees on these fees. After two years 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.
For how long is the franchise granted and is there a fee payable on renewal?
The term of the Franchise Agreement is 5 years, but this is renewable by you every 5 years for an administration fee of €1,000, 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 agreement to continue the franchise every 5 years until they dispose of it at some future date. We also now offer at our discretion a 10-year franchise agreement.
Does this contract permit me to sell my business?
Yes, the client base is a considerable asset built up and owned by you. The potential sales value of the goodwill of the business may typically be between X1 and X1.25 gross fees. There are various deferred fees to consider which are laid out in our franchise agreement, which you would factor into your selling price.
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 the third year to do this 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.
I am a qualified accountant without a practising certificate. How do I obtain this, or can I operate without one?
The route to obtaining one depends on the Institute to which you belong. We would advise you to contact them direct to find out their requirements.
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. However, if you are already an accountant in practice, it is possible, subject to confirmation of your background and qualifications, that we could offer a reduction in the training you need to attend and therefore a reduction in the franchise fee payable to us. This will be at our discretion.
What exclusive rights do you get?
You will be allocated an exclusive marketing territory defined by postcode boundaries and containing a population of at least one hundred thousand people. 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.
How do you justify your franchise fees and why should I join TaxAssist Accountants rather than one of the other accountancy franchises?
We are the leading franchised accountancy organisation with over 20 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 24 franchised areas and franchisees all operating from shop fronts around the country. The shop front brand is supplemented by the many branded cars driving around the country, national advertising, internet 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, CCH 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 who’s offering far outweighs the competition.
Unlike some of our competitors, we have no other business interests or our own accountancy practice to support in Ireland. This means the Support Centre can concentrate 100% of our time on our franchisees and their growth. Our Executive Directors have a breadth of business experience which they bring to the franchise. Roddy Comyn built up a successful small practice, Roddy Comyn & Co. Roddy has extensive experience with Irish tax and company law issues and prior to joining TaxAssist Accountants in 2010, Alison McGinley held positions at Google and at an ad agency in Dublin.
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.
Is the business seasonal?
No. A clients' accounts are made up to financial year-end dates that can be at any time of the year. Many tax returns are received earlier in the year when they are issued by Revenue, but these do not have to be completed and returned until 31st October. In addition, we have strategies to ensure that cashflow is even throughout the year.
How much next 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 a turnover of €300,000 + after 5 years. 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.
Is there an extra cost if I wish to bring my partner on the initial traning 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.
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 package fee.
We also provide further update days, operations manuals, have an award winning support site which offers our franchisees access to technical releases, frequently asked questions, online tutorials, advice and the ability to update your own website.
How much working capital will I need?
In addition to your own living expenses you will need to allow for a marketing budget with a minimum annual spend of €5,000. Further capital will be needed to cover office costs, any staff and sundry costs, which may vary across regions.
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. After 30 days if you have still not decided if you wish to proceed to completing a Franchise Agreement we will speak to you and will return your cheque to you. We do not bank the cheque until you advise that you wish to proceed with the franchise. Please be aware that the deposit cheque will become non-refundable 2 weeks before the start of your selected training course, or when we do your official sign up if sooner. This is because of initial costs incurred by ourselves.
What sort of person does TaxAssist Accountants look for?
Whilst a background in accountancy is desirable, the main attribute we look for is the determination to develop a successful business. We recruit accountants and non-accountants alike. General business acumen is important, and people skills are essential as the franchisee will be responsible for developing relationships with existing and prospective clients, as well as looking after staff needs.
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 Ireland. 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 Ireland only, and the differences between Ireland 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 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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