Now an international brand, a large percentage of the global network is now operating successfully from highly visible, welcoming shop fronts.
The TaxAssist Accountants model is fundamentally simple but has evolved to keep up with the pace of changing technology, focusing on the supply of professional accounting, taxation, and now more advisory and associated services to small businesses. Through innovation and franchising, TaxAssist Accountants delivers superior services to clients and maximises growth potential for franchisees.
The Group appointed its first franchisee in 1996 and through consistent recruitment now has a global network of more than 430 accounting practices in the UK, Ireland, and Australia the US and Canada.
The Group has also created new companies with TaxAssist Direct London Ltd, TaxAssist Direct Services Ltd and TaxAssist Direct Financial Services Ltd.
TaxAssist Accountants Timeline
- Following a Franchisee Assisted Management Buyout, Karl Sandall and Phil Sullivan step down as executive directors and become non-executive directors.
- Daren Moore FCCA becomes Group Managing Director.
- Sarah Robertson becomes the UK Managing Director and Group Director.
- James Mattam continues in his role as Group Business Development Director
- Mike Melling is appointed as Group Development Director, the first franchisee to take an executive role on the board of directors.
- TaxAssist shortlisted for Best White Collar Franchise at the Global Franchise Awards.
- First franchisees and Area Representatives recruited in the USA.
- First franchisee recruited in Canada.
- Finalist in the 'Business to Business' category at the Best Franchise Awards.
- WorkBuzz awards TaxAssist Accountants '5 star franchisee satisfaction' for the ninth consecutive year.
- TaxAssist Accountants launches in Canada.
- New TaxAssist client websites launched plus a new dedicated corporate website to showcase all of the Group's activity.
- Finalist for 'Best Franchise £10m+ Network Turnover' at the Best Franchise Awards.
- TaxAssist shortlisted for Global Franchise Award in the White Collar Franchise category.
- TaxAssist opens 250th shop in the UK.
- TaxAssist rises two places to 21st in Accountancy Daily's Top 75 firms survey.
- The TaxAssist Support Centre awarded '5 star employer status' from WorkBuzz for the third year running.
- TaxAssist Accountants launches in the USA.
- Karl Sandall, Group Chief Executive Director celebrates 20 years at the helm of TaxAssist Accountants.
- The TaxAssist Group Support Centre awarded '5 star employer status' from WorkBuzz for the second year running.
- Wins 'Best Franchisee Marketing Support' award at the Franchise Marketing Awards 2020.
- Finalist for 'Franchisor of the Year' at the bfa/HSBC British Franchise Awards.
- TaxAssist Accountants retains 21st position in the Accountancy Age Top 50 rankings.
- The TaxAssist Group finalist for 'Best Large Business' at Norfolk Business Awards.
- WorkBuzz awards TaxAssist Accountants '5 star franchisee satisfaction' for the eighth year in a row, as well as a 'Continuous Improvement award' due to an increase in the overall satisfaction score for three consecutive surveys.
- The TaxAssist Group wins Business of the Year at the Norfolk Business awards.
- The TaxAssist Group Support Centre awarded '5 star employer status' from WorkBuzz.
- TaxAssist Accountants rises one place to 21st in Accountancy Age Top 50 rankings.
- The TaxAssist Group named as finalist in the Large Business category in the Norfolk Business Awards.
- UK network reaches 75,000 clients and a combined fee bank of £50 million.
- WorkBuzz awards TaxAssist Accountants '5 star franchisee satisfaction' for the seventh year in a row.
- Following an extensive period of research and evaluation, TaxAssist rolls out new software suite including TaxCalc, Receipt Bank, Practice Ignition and Virtual Cabinet.
- WorkBuzz (formerly Smith + Henderson) awards TaxAssist '5 star franchisee satisfaction' for the sixth year in a row.
- UK network reaches 70,000 clients and a combined fee bank of £47 million.
- TaxAssist named as bfa HSBC 'Franchisor of the Year' finalist.
- TaxAssist Accountants holds steady at 22nd in the Accountancy magazine Top 75 rankings.
- Daren Moore, FCCA joins the TaxAssist Accountants Executive Board of Directors as Group Commercial Director.
- TaxAssist wins 'business to business' category in Smith + Henderson's Best Franchise 2017 awards.
- Smith + Henderson awards TaxAssist with '5 star franchisee satisfaction' for the fifth year in a row.
- Karl Sandall, Group Chief Executive of TaxAssist, awarded with honorary membership of the Association of International Accountants in recognition of his contribution to accountancy and finance.
- 200th TaxAssist Accountants Shop opens.
- TaxAssist wins 'The Local Campaign of the Year' award at the UK Biddable Media Awards, a prestigious award received for our local digital marketing campaign.
- Smith & Henderson awards TaxAssist with '5 star franchisee satisfaction' for the fourth year in a row.
- TaxAssist moves up three places to 21st in the Accountancy Age Top 50 survey.
- James Mattam joins the TaxAssist Accountants Executive Board of Directors as Business Development Director.
- Sarah Robertson moves role to become Operations Director.
- Phil Sullivan moves role to become Finance Director.
- Launch of first Australian TaxAssist Accountants shop.
- UK network reaches 60,000 clients and a combined fee bank of £40 million.
- TaxAssist Ireland scoops 'Best Marketing Campaign' award at Irish Franchise Award Ceremony.
- CEO of The TaxAssist Group Karl Sandall moves up 3 places to 47 on the 2016 Accountancy Age 'Financial Power' List.
- TaxAssist in the Republic of Ireland celebrate 5 years of success at their Annual Conference. They have built up to a network of 26 franchisees with a fee bank of over €5,000,000 and over 5,000 clients.
- Accountancy Age publish their Financial Power List 2015 with CEO of The TaxAssist Direct Group Ltd Karl Sandall making it to number 50.
- Alison McGinley of TaxAssist Ireland wins the Irish Franchise Association award "Irish Franchising Woman of the year".
- TaxAssist Accountants celebrates 20th Anniversary in style at Annual Conference.
- TaxAssist Accountants wins the 2015 Bronze Award for bfa Franchisor of the Year.
- TaxAssist moves up one place to 24th in the Accountancy Age Top 50 survey.
- Smith & Henderson awards TaxAssist with 'Best Franchise' in our category. We are also awarded with '5 star franchisee satisfaction' for the third year in a row.
- The milestone figure of 200 franchises in the network is reached.
- The Master Franchise Rights are awarded for Queensland, New South Wales and ACT in Australia.
- For the third year running, Smith & Henderson awards TaxAssist Accountants the award for "Best Training and Support" and is also awarded a "5 star franchisee satisfaction Recognition Award".
- In the Accountancy Age Top 50 listings, TaxAssist Accountants beats the "Big 4" international groups achieving the fifth highest growth across the whole Top 50.
- TaxAssist Ireland breaks into the Top 20 Accountancy Firms in the Republic.
- The Network has a record start to 2014 when for the first time, a Franchisee exceeds £100,000 sales in one month.
- TaxAssist Accountants are up to 25th in the Annual Accountancy Age Top 50 survey.
- Franchisee Assisted Management Buyout. John Westgarth retires as Chairman and Director after TaxAssist Accountants completes a MBO. This is believed to be the UK's first ever franchisee-assisted management buyout.
- UK network client total reaches 50,000.
- TaxAssist Accountants voted winner of "The Accountancy Firm of The Year" award by the members of the Association of International Accountants (AIA) beating global groups and industry giants.
- 150th Shop front opens.
- Debbie Corbett and Vince Dalaimo become the first franchisees in the history of the network to exceed the £1,000,000 fee bank milestone.
- TaxAssist Accountants wins "Best Large Franchisor" awarded by Smith & Henderson.
- A TaxAssist Accountants resale breaks the million pound barrier when Mark Fordham sells his franchise to Mike Melling.
- Our commitment to training leads to the founding of the TaxAssist Accountants Training Academy. This is made up of our in house team of qualified accountants and specialist trainers, who design and deliver our initial and ongoing face to face and online, and Continuing Professional Development programmes. This partnership ensures that materials are up to date, directly relevant to our network and of the highest quality.
- TaxAssist Accountants wins the BFA Franchisor of the Year Award.
- TaxAssist Accountants enters the Accountancy Age survey for the first time as the 34th largest accountancy firm with growth in sales of 19.9%, one of just six top 60 firms that achieved double-digit growth.
- Sarah Robertson wins 2020 Innovation Group "Marketing Person of the Year" for the second time (she previously won the award in 2007).
- 100th TaxAssist shop opens.
- The Master Franchise Rights are awarded to an established firm of Accountants in the Republic of Ireland.
- Phil Sullivan joins the Board of Directors as Network Operations and Finance Director.
- With full network agreement, the name of the franchise is changed from TaxAssist Direct to TaxAssist Accountants. This decision was made so franchisees' potential clients could more clearly understand the core services being provided.
- Sarah Robertson joins the TaxAssist Accountants Board as Business Development Director.
- Karl Sandall joins TaxAssist Accountants as Chief Executive and Director.
- First franchise awarded.
- Founded by John Westgarth.
Franchisee Case Studies
Accreditations & ethics
The Group abides by the ethics of the British Franchise Association (bfa) and works closely with all relevant accountancy and tax professional bodies and institutions. The Group abides by the laws and ethics of countries in question, currently the Irish Franchise Association, the Franchise Council of Australia (FCA), the International Franchise Association (IFA) and the Canadian Franchise Association (CFA).