Services


Benefit from Fixed Fee plans which provide you with a comprehensive accountancy and tax service for a competitive, fixed monthly fee. Meanwhile, focus on your business in the knowledge that your accounts are in safe hands and the costs are under your control.

 

Below, click your area of interest to reveal details relating to specific service topics, including an outline of the topic and the ways in which Piper Hulse can help you achieve your objectives.

 

Accountancy

Personal Tax

Under the self assessment regime an individual is responsible for ensuring that their tax liability is calculated and any tax owing is paid on time. HMRC issue tax returns to all individuals they are aware of who need to complete a return including all those who are self employed or company directors. However it is the individual's responsibility to complete a Self Assessment tax return (regardless of whether HMRC have issued one) if there is any tax owing which was not fully collected at source; typical examples includes capital gains, property income, dividends and interest.

How we can help

As well as preparing and filing your tax returns we can work with you to reduce your overall tax bill through legitimate tax planning activities including;

  1. Capital Gains Tax
  2. ISA's
  3. Pensions
  4. Venture Capital Trusts
  5. Enterprise Investment Schemes
  6. Entrepreneurs Relief
  7. Inheritance Tax
  8. Trusts
 

Business Tax

What?

The UK has one of the most complex tax systems in the world for companies with an array of taxes and regulations for businesses to comply with, including;

  • Corporation tax - paid on the company's profits
  • VAT - Collected and paid on the businesses sales and purchases
  • National Insurance - paid by employers and employees on wages
  • PAYE - Income tax and National Insurance collected by employers from wages
  • CIS - Construction Industry Scheme - Impacts contractors and subcontractors
  • IR35 - Impacts people working for a limited number of clients for example freelancers and consultants

How we can help

Manage the paperwork

  • Registration with HMRC
  • Calculation of taxes due
  • Preparation of tax returns
  • Filing of tax returns
  • Dealing with HMRC enquiries
  • CIS – Construction industry for contractors and subcontractors

Save tax legitimately

  • Financing Structure - Debt vs Equity
  • Remuneration Structure - Salary vs Dividends
  • Capital Allowances and Capital Gains
  • Incorporation: Sole Trader vs Limited Company
  • Tax Losses – use past losses to reduce future taxes paid
  • IR35 considerations

 

 

Year end accounts

What?

It is a legal requirement for all Limited Companies to prepare Annual accounts consistent with the appropriate accounting standards and file a formal set of accounts with Companies House. The Directors of the company are legally responsible for ensuring this.

It is also good practice for Sole Traders and Freelancers to prepare year-end accounts and may be a requirement for banks and other organisations (e.g. Life Insurance).

How we can help

  • Preparation of formal Year End Accounts consistent with appropriate accounting standards
  • Preparation of Abbreviated Accounts (where appropriate) for filing with Companies House
  • Discussion of the Year End Accounts and business performance with directors
  • Filing the accounts with Companies House
 

Company Secretary

Company secretary

What?

Company legislation requires that a minimum amount of information about a company must be publicly available, including for example, annual accounts, the registered office address and details of directors, the secretary (if there is one) and members. Even though the need to appoint a company secretary in a private company has been abolished, the duties of the Company Secretary remain and the directors must comply with the regulations.

How we can help

  • Filing of annual accounts with Companies House
  • Maintaining statutory registers: shareholders, directors and charges
  • Completing and filing statutory forms: Annual return (AR01), changes in the statutory registers, accounting reference dates, allotment of shares, and registered office.
  • Acting as registered office
  • The processing and filing of minutes and resolutions from board meetings
  • Filing on-line
 

Management accounts

What?

There is no legal requirement to prepare management accounts, but it is hard to run a business effectively without them. Most companies produce them regularly - eg monthly or quarterly.

Management accounts analyse recent historical performance and usually include forward-looking elements such as sales, cashflow and profit forecasts. The analysis is usually performed against forecasts and budgets that have been produced at the start of the year.

The information in management accounts is usually broken down so that the performance of different elements of the business can be measured. For example if a business has more than one sales outlet, there might be a separate report for each. There may also be a report produced to show how well a particular product has done across different outlets.

For businesses selling more than one product, it is advisable to provide a financial breakdown for each product category. This will allow you to ensure that profitable products are not subsidising those that are selling poorly, unless you intentionally promote loss leaders to attract further custom.

 

How we can help

Our management accounts service will enable you to:

  • Compare your accounts with original budgets or forecasts
  • Manage your resources better
  • Identify trends in your business
  • Highlight variations in your income or spending which may require attention
 

Bookkeeping

What?

All businesses (Sole Traders, Partnerships and Limited Companies) have a legal requirement to maintain accurate accounting records, collect taxes and file tax returns for income tax, National Insurance, VAT and Payroll where appropriate.

How we can help

We can either provide you with a comprehensive bookkeeping service including VAT, Payroll and CIS (where appropriate) or help you set-up or improve your in-house book-keeping at an appropriate level for your business.

This may range from; a paper based 'box file' system for those who prefer not to use Excel, a simple Excel spreadsheet based system providing you with more comprehensive information, or bookkeeping software for the more complex businesses.

 

VAT

What?

All businesses have a legal requirement to register for VAT if your taxable sales exceed a set annual figure (£85,000 from April 2017).

If you are making supplies below the limit you can apply for voluntary registration. This would allow you to reclaim input VAT, which could result in a repayment of VAT if your business was principally making zero rated supplies.

If you have not yet started to make taxable supplies but intend to do so, you can apply for registration. In this way input tax on start up expenses can be recovered.

It is important that a VAT registered business maintains complete and up to date records. This includes details of all supplies, purchases and expenses. Once registered you must make returns to HMRC showing amounts of output tax to be accounted for and of deductible input tax together with other statistical information.

There are a number of VAT accounting schemes:

  • Cash accounting scheme
  • Retail scheme
  • Flat rate scheme
  • Annual accounting schemes

VAT rules and accounting schemes can be complex with different VAT treatment of sales and supplies depending on the nature of your business. Visit www.hmrc.gov.uk/vat for further information.

 

How we can help

The VAT services we offer include:

  • Tailoring your accounting systems to bring together the VAT information accurately and quickly
  • Ensuring that your business is VAT efficient and that adequate finance is available to meet your VAT liability on time
  • Providing assistance with the completion of VAT returns
  • Negotiating with HMRC if disagreements arise and in reaching settlements
  • Advising as to whether any of the available schemes may be appropriate for you.
 

Payroll

What?

Once you take on an employee, you are responsible for calculating and deducting PAYE tax and National Insurance Contributions (NIC's) from an employees pay.

NIC's are essentially a tax on earned income. The NIC regime divides income into different classes: Class 1 contributions are payable on earnings from employment, while the profits of the self-employed are liable to Class 2 and 4 contributions. National insurance is often overlooked yet it is the largest source of government revenue after income tax.

An employee is anyone you employ and includes full-time, part-time and casual workers. If someone working for you says that they are self-employed you must check that this is actually the case. It is not a matter of choice; it is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct employment status for everyone working for you.

Directors of limited companies are also employees of the company so you must deduct tax and NIC's from their pay.

HMRC impose penalties on employers who fail to: keep the necessary records, operate PAYE or NI correctly, make the correct statutory payments, or provide HMRC or the employees with the relevant forms on time. It is important that you comply with all the regulations.

 

How we can help

The operation of PAYE can be a difficult and time consuming procedure for those in business. We will be happy to show you how to operate PAYE properly, offer ongoing advice on particular issues, or to provide an outsourced payroll service.

 
 

Advisory

Business start-up

What?

We will get to know you and your business to help you structure your business and navigate your way through the array of legal requirements.

We will work together with you on a regular basis to help you get started on the right track and will support you on an ongoing basis to help you with a comprehensive accountancy and tax service for a competitive fixed monthly fee, which requires minimal effort on your part allowing you to focus on your business in the knowledge that your accounts are in safe hands.

We are accountants with experience of running a business ourselves, our business experience and expertise will help you monitor your business and give you proactive advice on how you can improve your profitability.

How we can help

Our inclusive quick start-up package helps you to get started quickly and effectively and includes:

  • Planning - initial free meeting to constructively but critically discuss your business opportunity and strategy.
  • Financial Plan - help you to prepare and critically review your financial plan
  • Structuring - consider the most suitable structure for your business - Sole Trader, Limited Company or Partnership.
  • Financing - discuss the financing requirements and help you raise finance from banks
  • Company Formation - set up your new Limited Company
  • HMRC Registration - register for VAT, PAYE, NI and Corporation Tax where applicable
  • VAT Scheme Selection - help you to consider the options and select the right scheme for you
  • Remuneration Planning - consider the tax implications of alternative remuneration options
  • Book-keeping - help you develop your own bookkeeping system or provide you with our monthly book-keeping and accounting service
  • Regular contact and support available from one of our qualified accountants to help through the various legal requirements and help you get your business started
  • Interim 'Board Meeting' to discuss your business performance over the first few months and help point out areas for improvement or attention.
 

Profit and cash improvement

We will support you with periodic or specialist services to help you control your business and make the right decisions about your current and future business.

Cashflow Management and Forecasting

Managing cashflow is the most important task for all businesses and has been the downfall of many profitable businesses. It is no good being profitable if you don't have the cash to pay your bills - cash is sanity, profit is vanity. We will help you to:

  • Prepare a simple cashflow forecasting tool
  • Review your supplier and customer invoicing policies and procedures to improve cash flow
  • Implement a procedure to monitor and manage overdue customer debts

Business Plans and Budgets

It is important to plan the finances of your business to ensure that it has the necessary funds and focuses the management's efforts in the right places. We will help you to:

  • Prepare budgets and monitor the performance during the year
  • Prepare and constructively critique longer term business plans including: market analysis, competitor reviews, market positioning to help you define your strategy
  • Prepare and constructively critique longer term financial plans to plan you companies resources and to present to banks when raising finance.

Benchmarking Studies

Compare your financial results against others in your industry to highlight areas of opportunity. We have access to an external confidential database for benchmarking purposes.

Profit Improvement Plans

We review your business and identify opportunities to increase sales, increase profit margins and cut costs to improve the profitability of your business. In addition we will work with you to prepare a specific action plan and where appropriate help you to implement the plan.

Business Valuations

We will value your business using the appropriate valuation techniques and where appropriate also recommend areas for action to improve the valuation. This may be appropriate if you need to value your personal assets or as part of a plan to prepare the business for sale.

 

Raising Finance

What?

In the current economic and banking environment lenders are more cautious than ever when considering renewal of existing debt or the granting of new debt. It is critical that you present a clear and compelling business case and financial plan to banks which demonstrates the business opportunity along with the ability to make the repayments and secure the debt.

If your business requires refinancing to support a growth strategy or to replace existing sources of finance we can help you consider the options available and help you prepare the business and financial plans needed to convince the banks.

How we can help

We have over 10 years specialist experience of buying, selling and growing companies both in industry and as an advisor. With the direct experience of having acquired, having been acquired, sold and closed companies whilst in industry, and having advised on landmark transactions such as Aston Martin, Jaguar-Land Rover, Sunseeker, as well as smaller family and owner managed businesses.

The services we offer include:

  • Business plan - prepare a business plan to outline the position and potential of your business
  • Financial plan - prepare a financial plan to outline the financial potential and the ability of the business to meet the repayments and underwrite the debt
  • Meetings with banks - we will help you to identify the appropriate sources of finance and support you during the meetings with banks
  • Preparation of accounts required by banks during the period of the loan
  • Support in project managing Independent Banking Reviews (IBR's)
 

Buying a business

What?

Buying a business is often the most effective and efficient means of growing your business either in terms of scale, or by entering into new geographic markets or service areas. It is also one of the easiest ways of losing money if you don't do it properly.

How we can help

We have over 10 years specialist experience of buying, selling and growing companies both in industry and as an advisor. With the direct experience of having acquired, having been acquired, sold and closed companies whilst in industry, and having advised on landmark transactions such as Aston Martin, Jaguar-Land Rover, Sunseeker, as well as smaller family and owner managed businesses.

The services we offer include:

  • Review of business strategy - buy or build
  • Identification of potential acquisition targets
  • Due Diligence - detailed analysis of acquisition targets to highlight the potential issues and opportunities
  • Financial Plan - support with the preparation of financial plans to correctly model the costs and benefits of the acquisition
  • Negotiation - we will support you through the negotiation process and assist you and your lawyer through the legal contracts
  • Project Management - we are able to support you with the project management of the acquisition process allowing you the time to manage your existing business to ensure that you don't take your eye off the ball.
  • Integration - we will help you integrate the acquired entity in an appropriate manner to ensure that you gain the synergies and avoid loosing customers and key staff.
 

Selling a business

What?

If you are thinking of selling a business within the next few years it is important that you prepare your business ready for sale well in advance as many of the changes needed to maximise price will take some time to implement and take effect.

If your house is poorly maintained or decorated you wouldn't expect to get the same price as one that was in top condition, the same is true when you are selling a business.

How we can help

We have over 10 years specialist experience of buying, selling and growing companies both in industry and as an advisor. With the direct experience of having acquired, having been acquired, sold and closed companies whilst in industry, and having advised on landmark transactions such as Aston Martin, Jaguar-Land Rover, Sunseeker, as well as smaller family and owner managed businesses.

The services we offer include:

  • Preparation - look at your business the same way a potential buyer would and highlight the issues and help develop an action plan to address them
  • Preparation - preparation of the business ready for a sale to maximise the price
  • Information pack - we will help you to prepare an information pack to accurately and effectively present your business in an appropriate manner to maximise value
  • Identify potential buyers - we will help you to identify potential buyers and where appropriate make confidential approaches on your behalf
  • Due diligence - we will help you manage the buyers detailed analysis of your business and minimise the disruption to your business
  • Negotiation - we will support you through the negotiation process and assist you and your lawyer through the legal contracts
  • Project management - we are able to support you with the project management of the sale allowing you the time to manage your existing business to ensure that you don't take your eye off the ball before the business is sold.
  • Separation - we will help you separate the business in an appropriate manner to ensure that you minimise the disruption to you and the business and maximise your returns.
 

Project Management

What?

Senior management support for companies considering, or in the process of, acquiring, selling, integrating, or raising new finance. With over 10 years M&A experience in Industry, the leading 'Big 4' accountancy practice M&A team, and Interim M&A Advisory.

How we can help

We have over 10 years specialist experience of buying, selling and growing companies both in industry and as an advisor. With the direct experience of having acquired, having been acquired, sold and closed companies whilst in industry, and having advised on landmark transactions such as Aston Martin, Jaguar-Land Rover, Sunseeker, as well as smaller family and owner managed businesses.

Why use a specialist M&A advisor?

  • Project Management: Experienced M&A leader to efficiently and effectively assist you to coordinate the internal team (where appropriate) and various advisors (Lawyers, Banks etc) to enable the project to be proactively controlled, run efficiently, minimise transaction time and costs, and dramatically increase the chances of success
  • Maintain business focus: M&A transactions require intensive periods of activity requiring full time senior management effort and energy. Hiring an M&A specialist to work with management enables them to control the transaction whilst having the time to run the existing business. Typically M&A transactions can take over management's schedules resulting in them 'taking their eye off the ball' to the detriment of both the transaction and the existing business
  • Flexibility: The support of an experienced senior M&A manager when you need it without the need to set-up, or increase, your own in-house M&A team
  • Cost: At a fraction of the cost than if hired from a consultancy practice; typically a third
  • Independence: A balanced and independent perspective not constrained by potential internal conflict of interest (history, politics, threat to job or other baggage) and not tied to any other members of the external advisory team, ensuring an independent and balanced approach
  • Perspective: Unique experience from all aspects of a transaction having hands on management experience of: Line management in industry; being sold; acquisitions; disposals; carve outs; refinancing, and integration
  • Credentials: Leading role on over 50 transactions including:
    1. Landmark deals: Aston Martin, Jaguar LandRover, Sunseeker, IBM, Motorolla, NEC, Avaya
    2. Mid market transactions: Dimensions Corporatewear, Palletways, Gradus, telent, Dechra, Sagem, Gossen Matrawatt
    3. Corporate, Private Equity, Family owned companies, Cross border transactions (UK, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, North America & Asia), complex carve outs, outsourcing to low cost countries, Buying a business