Firstly, can you provide some background on My T as a business?
We had issues with clients giving us data to do their accounts, tax returns, and VAT returns on time because we were always getting things last minute. It’s stressful because you don’t do much during the week and suddenly you have to meet a tight deadline. So we said: ‘No, there must be a better way’.
We have made an app that gets the client to take pictures of their receipts on a daily basis, so we can have the data on a daily basis so that we can plateau the levels of work and also provide some flexibility.
It’s a record-keeping app, but we soon started integrating more and more functionalities with it. From just a basic keeping record of receipts and bank statements, you can now create invoices, do mileage, and it’s now also a cloud-connected system.
We then targeted the idea of a bookkeeping software, but we thought that putting in the data manually was a bit 1990s, so we developed our own AI system. The client can now take a picture that can be selected and submitted to the AI, which will extract the information needed, such as the organisation’s name, the date of the invoice, the net value, the VAT value, and the gross value. You can then import this into the bookkeeping system, with things working in perfect harmony.
Then we thought that we need to make it available to everyone, so we have decided to have a very low pricing level, starting at £6 per month for the bookkeeping services and £15 to use the AI.
Can you give me some details about the group’s upcoming crowdfunding campaign?
We’ve been trying to get on Seedrs for many, many months but with lockdown things were put back a little. We did get onto Seedrs in January of this year and we realised we didn’t want to waste any more time, we wanted to act quickly on it. The idea of the crowdfunding campaign is to gain momentum, to let people know that the product exists.
The second point is that we want to raise some money because we’ve got a very ambitious plan. We want to grow as quickly as possible and as big as possible, because one thing that will happen in the next two years is the introduction of Making Tax Digital. You will need to have electronic versions of your receipts and a database or bookkeeping software to record your expenses, so we are working towards that.
We thought crowdfunding would be a good way to promote that and let people know about this situation, as well as raising money while raising awareness..
What exactly will you use the funds raised for?
One thing will be social media, we are going to do a lot of marketing on Facebook, LinkedIn, and platforms like that. We are also planning to go to various seminars and conferences, as well as carrying out email promotions to accountants, customers, seminars, and webinars explaining how they can get involved.
We will also go into the Croydon Chamber of Commerce and London Chamber of Commerce, telling them how we can improve them.
One of the biggest things would be to get a company on board, allowing them to provide our software to its customers for free because the more profiling we have from the crowdfunding, and internet and social media influences, the more we can raise brand recognition.
How will My T’s stakeholders, especially accountants, benefit from this funding round?
The accountant can use the software for free, as the client is the user they actually use it for free, and the platform is very beneficial to them. As an accountant, I understand the issues that they face. I can say that this will bring accountants into the 21st Century, because this is going to be the way forward whether you like it or not.
They will benefit from us letting them know about it, by getting them involved. We don’t want to be like other software companies, we want to talk to individuals, and have the best customer service possible. We have developed our version of video calling, so as to have a customer service application where customers can press support and see someone face to face, if that is what you want, while screen sharing and solving those issues.
The idea is to make it as easy as possible, and as efficient as possible, as well as providing the best customer service, because a lot of our competition don’t have this kind of customer service. We try to keep things simple, and that’s the thing – to keep things easy and simple.
What do you see for the future of My T following the crowdfunding campaign?
We are thinking that in the next couple of years we should be a reasonable player in the UK. The target is to achieve over 10% of the UK market, and then once we reach that potential we want to improve the technology to make it as easy as possible for people.
Small and micro businesses don’t need expensive software to produce records for their business, it should be as easy as possible with good customer service. You need to make sure that at the end of the day you are reporting to HMRC, with correct and accurate data.
We want to grow as much as possible, but I think that once we got to that level the idea would be to start to give back to the local community. We are very active in the local community and the charitable element is to help small businesses, students get training, and the community at large.