Growth on cards as Glasgow's Russell & Russell ramps up client portfolio by a fifth

Glasgow-based accountancy and business advisory specialist Russell & Russell has increased its limited company client portfolio by a fifth and kept its growth plans on track despite the economic fallout from the pandemic.

The firm has also maintained its staffing levels and said it was “actively” seeking more hires as it positions itself to take advantage of opportunities arising from the expected recovery.

While it has in many cases adopted a supportive role for clients struggling with business interruption, income loss and furlough, the firm has also managed to “materially increase” its ongoing turnover, which it still plans to treble within its current five-year growth plan period.

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Bosses said they were gearing up for geographical expansion beyond the firm’s core focus of central Scotland. It already works with clients across the UK and offers tax advice to “numerous” clients in Europe.

Some members of the team at Russell & Russell, the Glasgow-based chartered accountant, tax and business adviser.

Managing director Stuart Clark, who took the helm just before the initial Covid shutdown, said: “Of course, it has been a challenging year for everyone, but the firm has come through it relatively unscathed.

“We made a policy decision at the start of the crisis to take a long-term view and to concentrate on supporting clients rather than on fee income. But, despite that, turnover has remained steady.

“The firm has also taken on 26 new clients over the course of the year, taking the current total of active limited companies to 168, up from 142 at the start of 2020.

“In recent weeks alone, we have handled five or six incorporations and the new clients we are working with are across a variety of sectors: manufacturing, engineering and professional services, construction, consultancy, medical and renewables.”

The firm has 15 staff but is planning to increase this to 18 over the next few months. It is now also eyeing potential acquisitions as an add-on to its organic growth.

Clark added: “There is definitely scope for us in acquisition territory if we can identify businesses which would be a good fit with our own. Growth is still very much heading the agenda at Russell & Russell and we look forward to another very positive year.”

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