We have recorded another strong growth in revenue for the financial year to 31 March 2020. Here, Senior Partner David Nelson, comments on the results and discusses the past strategic decisions that underpinned the firm’s growth and in doing so, helped protect it from the COVID-19 storm.

“In the year to March 20, the firm witnessed pleasing growth across most of its service lines.  Whilst the outbreak of COVID-19 and the governments measures introduced to combat its spread led to several advisory and corporate finance projects being put on ice, the year marked another large step forward in the delivery of our 2023 vision.

Especially pleasing was the strong growth within our audit division which, following the substantial investment and strategic focus given to it, took full advantage of the changes caused by the top 10 firm’s revised approach to service delivery and pricing. That growth should continue into 2021 through the new client wins we have already secured and our increased relevance and attraction to larger businesses looking at the service quality and value gained from their existing offering, many of which are the UK subsidiaries of Internationally owned groups.

Whilst the disruption in the audit market has contributed, our enhanced reputation for offering a quality, time efficient and client focused service has driven our success. Across the service spectrum, businesses want to work with firm’s that understand and positively contribute to the delivery of their future strategic plans.  Our partner led service coupled with the breadth of our other advisory specialisms, means we’ve been able to show how we can make that positive difference to businesses and contribute actively to the fulfilment of their strategic plans.

The growth in the audit practice has had other positives for the business.  I joined Smith Cooper back in 2009, when we were more renowned for our advisory specialisms than the quality of our compliance services.  Whilst in buoyant economic times that leads to a strong pipeline of deal related work, it doesn’t help when there’s a downturn when recurring fees provide the stability needed to weather the storm.

Within our 2023 vision we challenged ourselves as a Partner group to grow both the number and average size and sophistication of our clients, whilst maintaining the strong flow of advisory and transactional related work.

Our success to date in doing this, together with the operational efficiencies and flexibility of our IT and internal systems, put the firm in a stable position going into the current COVID-19 pandemic and meant that we were able to focus our attention on continuing to be the dependable and trusted advisors our clients needed, as they navigated one of the most challenging periods for any business in recent times.

I am proud of the team that we have built and the continued success we have achieved.  Our Partner and Senior Management team are young, ambitious and well prepared for the scale that will hopefully come in future years, and I look forward to watching us thrive as a team.”