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This is a letter to outline how beneficial Ben Roberts and team at Roberts and Cowling have been for the growth of my business since we first started working together, back in 2013. I produce and sell fine art for a living, establishing and operating a business in this field was something I would have found very challenging without Ben Roberts on my team.
Coming from the art world I knew very little about how I should structure my business and set it up to run as profitable as it possibly could. Ben and his team knew exactly how I should approach this structure, taking into consideration my big aspiration for future. I was lucky enough to find some success with my artwork series’ and exhibitions through 2014 and 2015. I relied heavily on Ben through this quick rise in activity and believe he helped me make some of my wisest business decisions through this time. I felt I could explain my creative ideas with Ben, and he was capable of helping me understand it from a business and accounting sense.
In early 2015, I planned to move to New York, to seize opportunities in this vibrant city. Ben and his team helped me understand the tax liabilities in both countries and managed to structure the business in such a way we pay the lowest tax possible while I’m working in the United States. At this stage, Ben has become a partner in most decision the business has to make, and very important to how the business operates.
My next venture is to expand my idea of how art is produce and sold, and I have plans to build a business in Hong Kong. We had no hesitation flying Ben over to Hong Kong to meet with accountants, understand what’s required to set up a business and then how it transfers to our idea. Having Ben and the Roberts and Cowling team on board from the start, is a huge contributor to the success of my business. He has become as part of the studio team as anyone else. We’ll be partnering with Ben and his team in our next venture and long into the future.
Roberts & Cowling is such an integrated part of our business. Ben sits on the board and is the CFO in our company. R & C provides bookkeeping, fortnightly finance meetings, monthly budget and cash flow updates, annual strategic retreat and the annual reports. Ben is constantly used as a sounding board for new ideas and is also commonly a speaker at our quarterly whole of business meeting in which we fly all representatives around the country to our Brisbane office. There have been some up and downs and I am not sure without guidance from Roberts & Cowling that we would have made it through. This year we are now on track for our largest year from a revenue and profit perspective.
I first interacted with Ben when I was in a partnership that was far from optimal. Ben was a sounding board for my exit and how to manage that effectively. Following that exit I went out on my own and now run a national medical distribution business. The support that I received from Roberts & Cowling was fantastic to the point where they are a considerable part to my business. Ben is the CFO and Roberts & Cowling are responsible for all sales, purchases and stock control. This role is vital and without the confidence in them I could not continue to aggressively grow my business.
I was meeting with Ben a few years ago as part of our annual review and asked him what
he thought was holding me back. He drew a structure diagram of different roles in a typical business and it was quickly apparent that the issue was that I was doing too many roles and was involved in far more detail than was required in a lot of areas in my business. It was then that I made Ben and R&C responsible for their roles and I was to have little involvement. As a result of not being involved in so much and the improvements that R&C has assisted me make, my net profit has increased 114%.
Roberts & Cowling is a key partner in my business, but they do far more than just the tax returns and bookkeeping. The business now utilises the following services:
– Monthly board meetings
– Cash flow projections
– Quarterly strategy days
Ben is a key part to my business in that he can help me analyse things to maximise my returns, he is such a valuable resource to my business that any supplier meeting in Australia or overseas he is requested to attend.
As part of my previous business we had the typical accountant that was seen once a year. I remember complaining about the $2,500 annual fee. In the last three years, I have spent in excess of $300,000 with R&C but this would have to be one of the best investments I have made.
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If you’re in the Brisbane area we are conveniently located near ‘The Gabba’ on Logan Rd with free on-site parking. Just get in touch and arrange a time to come in for a coffee and a chat about how we can help you build a better business for life
R&C are first and foremost Brisbane Accountants. While we have clients all over Australia (and even in New York, Hong Kong, Christmas Island and New Zealand), South East Queensland and Brisbane is also home for the vast majority of our clients.
We have some fantastic clients in a wide variety of locations in Brisbane. Some of the most interesting places we have clients in Brisbane and South East Queensland are:
It would be impossible to be an accountant in Brisbane without having clients in the CBD. Interestingly, we have found a significant shift away from small/ medium business being headquartered in the CBD (which can be seen in some of the commercial property vacancy rates). Some of our clients located in the CBD have included dentists, doctors, landscape architects, financial planners, restaurants, cafes and retail.
We have clients that operate out of the Brisbane Markets and have experience with much of the industries that call it home, from fruit brokers to transport. The Brisbane Markets are a hive of activity but also come with a unique set of challenges. Typically business inside the markets are based on low margin, high volume transactions. This can provide interesting challenges around cashflow shortages, market risk and business valuations. We love visiting the markets to see our clients and witnessing the amazing way the markets operate.
Fortitude Valley may actually be one of the hottest locations in Brisbane for businesses. We have a great number of clients in a wide range of industries who love our accounting services. Some of the industries we work with in “The Valley” include:
The benefit of Fortitude Valley is its proximity to the CBD while maintaining fantastic access. With our office being so close by, it makes sense that we have a fantastic feel for business here.
Located an hour and a half north of Brisbane, Kilcoy is a small regional town with a fantastic small business base. We often visit Kilcoy and our clients. The industry in Kilcoy is amazingly varied for a relatively small place and is represented by the types of clients we have here. We work for dairy farms, laundromats, cafes and transport companies all out of Kilcoy. It’s an excellent place to visit clients and get an appreciation for where some of the relaxed business culture comes from with regional locations so close and impressive within such a short distance from Brisbane.
West End has come of age in a huge way in the last decade. Business has really moved in here and is thriving. Café’s, architects, gyms, builders all work prominently out of West End. The charm of West End is that it hasn’t yet lost its alternative feel and has quite a lot of synergies to Fortitude Valley. Its easy to see why West End will continue to be a hub for enterprise in the long term.
Being based in “The Gabba” for our entire life, R&C has watched the Gabba evolve from poor suburban cousin to a metropolis that will thrive in years to come. Business is really starting to pick up through wonderful new developments, the reactivation of the end of Logan Road and Stones Corner and the realisation that Woolloongabba represents value in regard to its access and proximity to the CBD. Our clients in the Gabba include industries such as medical equipment distribution, real estate, legal and financial planning.