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IT system procurement is not just negotiating the lowest licence fee

Negotiating and procuring a new I.T system is not a simple process and can be a very daunting experience.

Negotiation and procurement is a very important stage in selecting and implementing a new I.T system, and it is crucial that sufficient effort and time is assigned to this process.  It is key to realise that this process is not just about negotiating the lowest licence fees and day rate, there are many factors that need to be considered, negotiated and agreed. 

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How Will COVID Affect The Value Of Your Business – The Importance Of EBITDAC

You may well have heard of EBITDA, or Earnings Before Interest, Tax, Depreciation, and Amortisation. It is used widely as an approximation for the amount of cash a business generates annually, and that its owners can deploy as they wish depending on a variety of factors such as the chosen financing structure, growth plans, reward strategy etc. In the context of a transaction, a similar idea in the US is Seller’s Discretionary Earnings or SDE, which is a helpful way of thinking about cash generation.

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Company Car Tax – It’s Electrifying!

I still get asked all of the time about whether a car is better being owned by the company or by the individual. There are lots of factors in play here, but in general terms there is a simple over-riding principle – standard cars (particularly diesel) or almost certainly better owned privately, electric cars are almost certainly better owned by the company, and hybrid cars are more borderline depending on their emissions, value, and electric range. Let’s look at a few options:

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If you are a key player in your industry, you are probably eligible to make a claim for research and development tax relief.

A claim for research and development tax relief may be available for any attempt to make any improvement to the industry standard in any field of science or technology. In this context “technology” is a very broad term.

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Software selection is not just about functionality

Software selection is an important and often daunting choice for any business. When selecting a new software system, historically many businesses have followed the route of listing the detailed functionality requirements into a Request for Proposal (RFP), and distributing this to several suppliers. The responses would be reviewed and marked, and a software demonstration focusing on the functionality would follow. The outcome being a preferred software supplier to then begin financial negotiations with.

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What is Real Time Accounting?

Put simply, it is the ability to process and access your up to date financial information any-time, anywhere, allowing you to make well informed business decisions faster and respond to the ever changing world in which we find ourselves.

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How the Kickstart Scheme works

The Kickstart Scheme provides funding to create new job placements for 16 to 24 year olds on Universal Credit who are at risk of long term unemployment

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Having a conversation about the future…

Perhaps the trickiest conversation to have in a family business is when one generation relinquishes control in favour of the next. However it is also one of the most important discussions to have.

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Changes For Household Finances in April 2021

There are a number of changes that may affect your household finances taking effect in April 2021 including tax rates, increases to household outgoings and changes to COVID related loan repayments agreements. This article covers some of the pending changes.

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Effective Exit Planning

Whether you are considering retirement, looking for the next challenge, or for any number of other reasons, the decision to sell your business is one of the most important you’ll make. Maximising the return on your hard work and securing your legacy takes careful planning, and whatever stage of its lifecycle your business ownership is currently at, a focus on your exit plans will add value.

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Is now the right time to consider a Virtual CIO / IT Director?

The CIO or IT Director is usually the most senior IT member of a business responsible for the management, implementation, and usability of information and computer technologies.  In recent times this role has evolved not only to be responsible for the current state IT systems but also to define and lead the IT strategy of a business. 

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Research & Development tax credits

For accounting periods beginning on or after 1 April 2021, the payable R&D Tax Credit for SMEs will be restricted

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Salary sacrifice / optional remuneration package benefits in kind tax changes from 6 April 2021

The Optional Remuneration Arrangements (OpRA) rules were introduced on 6 April 2017 and changed the tax position for employees receiving most benefits via a salary sacrifice arrangement, or instances where there is an option between the employee receiving either a cash or benefit as part of their package.

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Restart Grant Scheme

In the Chancellor’s recent Budget statement, he announced the pending launch of the Restart Grant Scheme. The is effectively a £5bn grant kitty aimed at retail, hospitality and leisure sector businesses to tackle the fallout of the COVID pandemic and support them until the planned reopening.

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Budget 2021

The Chancellor put forward his Budget today (3rd March) in what was one of the most anticipated statements of its type in recent years.

There were rumours of tax hikes being introduced in the short term but it seems these will be phased in, the first of these being an increase to Corporation Tax in 2023

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Grants to help small and medium-sized businesses new to importing or exporting

The SME Brexit Support Fund will soon open for applications. This fund will give businesses up to £2,000 to support training or professional advice on the following areas:

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CIS Construction Industry VAT Reverse Charge

The CIS VAT domestic reverse charge measure will apply to supplies of construction work from 1 March 2021. The measure was due to commence in October 2019 and has been delayed twice due to Brexit and the Coronavirus.

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Brexit VAT Notes

As of 1st January 2021, the transitional arrangements for the supply of goods and services between the UK and the EU has ceased. Agreement has been reached on a post-transition trade agreement, but this does not prevent the UK from leaving the EU VAT regime. As a consequence, there are a number of ways in which the treatment of VAT on transactions with the EU have changed.

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Is The CGT Clock Ticking?

With the 2021/22 tax year budget having been delayed to March 2021, business owners, investors and landlords have a narrow opportunity to plan in anticipation of potentially material tax hikes.

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Furlough Extends To March & 3rd Self Employed Grant

The Chancellor announced further extensions to the CJRS and a 3rd SEISS today (5 November 2020).

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Chancellor Update Support Schemes

The government’s Job Support Scheme (JSS) will be expanded to protect jobs and support businesses required to close their doors as a result of coronavirus restrictions, the Chancellor announced today, 9 October.

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Govt Winter Economy Plan

The Chancellor Rishi Sunak today outlined additional government support to provide certainty to businesses and workers impacted by coronavirus across the UK.

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Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (Second Grant Window)

Applications for the second and final Self-Employment Income Support Scheme grant are now open. If you’re eligible and your business has been adversely affected on or after 14 July 2020, you must make your claim for the second grant on or before 19 October 2020.

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Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme October Changes

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme also known as the furlough scheme will be changing from 1 October 2020. We have compiled a review of the core elements.

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Ballards LLP Podcast – Claiming Expenses For GP’s & Consultants

Listen to our recent podcast which we hope you find useful and interesting. This episode explores whether you can claim and how to claim for areas including motor expenses, subscriptions, home internet, mobile phones and much more.

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Tax information on staff working from home

A common query we are receiving recently is surrounding staff working from home due to the current situation. We have therefore set out the general position for both the employer and employee.

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James Syree Ballards LLP

James Syree FCA

Partner & CEO

James is responsible for the overall running of the firm and works with a number of corporate clients and individuals across a number of sectors. He has a particular interest in technology and how the firm can automate as much of the compliance function in order to free up time to spend providing business and planning advice to clients. James oversees a number of large corporate audits but is equally comfortable supporting start ups. He has experience working with venture capitalist backed projects and private equity houses and is passionate about providing sensible, practical advice to business owners and leaders.

Mark Skellum Ballards LLP

Mark Skellum FCA

Partner & CFO

Prior to working with the firm, Mark spent time working with a number of national and international accountancy firms managing a portfolio of large audit clients. He soon realised that he wanted to work closer with business owners and provide a more personal service delivering timely strategic advice. Mark is an expert in business structuring for operational and tax efficiencies. Mark is also a Head of our specialist Healthcare offering in which he works with a number of private consultants and GP surgeries as well as larger corporate healthcare entities such as Super Partnerships and federated entities. Mark is widely recognised as one of the region’s leading authorities on accountancy within the medical sector.

Matthew Watson Ballards LLP

Matthew Watson FCA CTA

Partner

Matthew is a second generation dedicated healthcare accountant. As a Head of our Healthcare offering, there are few if any that have more experience than Matthew in this area from an accounting and strategic advice point of view. He works with a large number of GP surgeries, hundreds of medical consultants and Directors and a number of corporate healthcare entities such as federations and Super Partnerships. Matthew works closely with Practice Managers and is very hands on with his approach. He particularly enjoys getting under then skin of clients and supporting strategic planning and streamlining clients internal processes. Matthew is both a Chartered Accountant and Chartered Tax Advisor.

Ben Powell Ballards LLP

Ben Powell ACA CTA

Partner & CTO

Ben is a partner and Chief Technical Officer for the firm. He is recognised across the region as one of the sector’s most technical accountants gaining prizes from both the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales and the Chartered Institute of Taxation (and is also qualified in both disciplines). Ben works with a varied range of clients including Owner Managed Businesses, large corporates and private clients. He is also one of our leads within the Healthcare team working with GPs, surgeries and corporate healthcare businesses. Ben has advanced experience of systems implementation and is one of the firm’s leads on cloud accounting.

James Maynell Ballards LLP

James Maynell FCA

Partner

James joined the firm from global accountancy firm Ernst & Young where he worked on operational and transactional projects with large national and international entities as well as private equity houses. He now works with clients on a range of operational objectives including, sales and purchases, KPI monitoring and uplift, efficiencies, cost reduction and structuring. James is comfortable providing these services as a package or stand alone projects to SMEs and large corporates alike.

Steve Jones Ballards LLP

Steven Jones MCIM

Business Development Partner & CMO

Steven is a partner with the firm and oversees all sales and marketing activities. He is a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and also deals with new client engagement and onboarding. He has a particular interest in digital marketing and often supports clients with their own marketing plans and strategies. Steven also oversees new product development within the firm, diversification, commercial partnerships and client communications.

Liz Peters Ballards LLP

Liz Peters FCA CTA

Tax Partner

Liz is a Tax Partner with the firm and also the technical lead on tax planning. She covers all aspects of corporate and personal tax planning and has an in-depth knowledge of all tax legislation. Liz works with a number of private clients on varying tax matters including Inheritance tax planning and strategic planning. She particularly enjoys complex areas such as Trusts & estate planning and advising on and acting in a range of technical disputes and enquiries from HMRC.

Ben Allman Ballards LLP

Ben Allman FCA CTA

Partner & COO

Ben works closely with Owner Manager Businesses across the region. He is known for having a very hands on approach and providing tailored services. He is an expert in cloud accounting using software such as Xero and Quickbooks to provide clients with real time management information to support sound decision making. Ben is both a Chartered Accountant and Chartered Tax Advisor which provides an added dimension to strategic discussions. Ben also heads up the firm’s Agribusiness offering which supports clients varying from rural estates and farming families to large corporate agricultural manufacturers and distributors.

Phil Waller Ballards LLP

Phil Waller FCA CTA

Tax Partner

Phil specialises in taxation matters and his experience covers all aspects of the tax spectrum with the possible exception of VAT! He has worked in the area of taxation since 1986 and has developed specialisms in advising owner managers with strategic taxation issues, including group reorganisations and succession/retirement matters. He also has great experience in dealing with the government’s innovative tax reliefs for research and development and patent box, and also shareholder investment decisions involving the many venture capital reliefs, particularly the enterprise investment schemes.

Phil takes pride in helping clients with their business/commercial decisions and how best to take advantage of taxation reliefs which may be available in carrying through those decisions.

Martin Adams Ballards LLP

Martin Adams FCA CTA

Tax Partner

Both a chartered accountant and chartered tax advisor, Martin operates as a mixed tax practitioner who also works closely with our corporate finance team to deliver transactional tax advice for both corporate and property transactions. Such advice includes EIS/SEIS tax relief and EMI management incentives considerations.

As well as tax advice Martin provides valuation services for taxation and commercial purposes, he also takes appointments for contentious valuations in an expert witness/advisor capacity.

Martin is able to advise and help plan for all aspects of a transaction and he regularly provides capital gains tax and inheritance tax advice as part of wider advisory projects. He also enjoys working on R&D tax relief claims.