In 1930, Cyril Haines Watts qualified as an accountant and soon managed to acquire his first clients. By the 1940s, his operation had expanded to his first office which later grew into a larger premises, recruiting two members of staff.
Following its first major acquisition, the firm’s purview extended to tax and mechanised bookkeeping services. Since that time, Haines Watts has provided accounting and financial advisory services to various clients and companies over the last 90 years.
Currently, Haines Watts is listed as one of the UK’s top 15 entrepreneurial accountants and business advisors and has over 50 offices nationwide, providing around 100 specialist services. Its team of over 1,000 employees across the country advise an estimated 35,000 businesses on issues relating to tax, auditing and other financial matters.
Over the years, the firm has grown the amount of services it provides from dealing with business processes to advising clients on tax. Its tax advisory service includes personal, corporate and international tax planning, including wealth planning and corporate tax investigations.
Haines Watts’ business advisory services include legal and forensic support, talent management, expansion advice and support with acquisitions.
In September 2020, the firm posted a 11% increase in revenues for the latest financial year, primarily attributing it to its “buy and build” business model. Haines Watts recorded a £106m turnover in FY20 after recent acquisitions in the North East and Scotland.
However, profitability growth plateaued slightly at 5% which the firm blamed on its recent investments in technology and office space which were not used to the best of their potential due to the pandemic. The firm revealed it was able to reposition its technology investment to allow employees to work from home during lockdown.
Speaking on these results, Michael Davidson, the group’s managing partner, said: “We are pleased to close off last year exactly where we thought we would be, with our acquisition strategy delivering the double-digit growth we had planned.
“Hitting the £100m mark as we enter our 90th year in business is a huge achievement and testament to everyone that works across the UK for the firm.”
Recently, the firm has expanded its operations in the North East and Yorkshire by expanding its teams. There have been 23 new appointments in the last year, as Haines Watts responds to the growing and changing demands of its business owner client base.
Speaking on the group’s performance in the past 12 months, Haines Watts’ regional manager Donna Bulmer said: “As the world starts to reopen, we’re seeing more optimism for the months ahead, and our investment in people means we’re prepared to support our clients as their needs evolve and they continue to adapt.”