Last week we caught up with a new CW member, Watermill Accounting. Founder, Deepti Agarwal tells us a bit more about her company and their plans for the future.
Why did you choose a career in accounting?
I have always been interested in numbers and have enjoyed solving complex problems. Accountancy as a profession can be quite demanding. Our clients depend on us and we have to be constantly on our toes to ensure we are up to date on compliance and tax laws. I study tax and changes in tax laws and that makes me feel like a student, which is great!
You founded the company back in 2009 – was there an epiphany to set up Watermill Accounting or did it feel like natural progression. How was the process of setting up the company?
It was a natural progression. I left KPMG as I moved country and then I joined a firm that specialised in small businesses. The firm’s processes were paper based and cumbersome. I thought I could do a better job by making better use of technology and cloud computing. I also wanted to make accounting fun and dynamic. In January 2009, I partnered with a cloud-based software provider and started Watermill Accounting from home.
Can you offer any advice for entrepreneurs looking to set up a company?
Get a good qualified accountant! They can be like a business partner and help you every step of the way.
What sort of tech companies do you have on your books? Are you able to name any and give examples of the type of issues they come to you with?
We work with a range of technology companies related to solar energy, smart cars, robotics, mobile app and computing. Cambridge Applied Research and DZP Technologies are some of the clients that are members of Cambridge Wireless. My husband owns a R&D company, Cambridge Aeroacoustics Limited. Most companies are unaware of R&D tax credits they could claim. As they have little money to start with, they do not spend enough on salaries which is crucial in claiming R&D tax credits.
Do you feel working in Cambridge gives you better access to technology companies?
Yes, definitely. We are located at Future Business Centre, next door to the Science Park. We have clients who are spinouts of Cambridge University. In general, Cambridge has its own brand. It hosts Incubators that attracts technology companies.
What might a typical day be like for you in the office? Do you manage to achieve the elusive work/life balance?
My usual day is full of meetings. Luckily I have a very enthusiastic team to help me manage our clients. We are growing fast and numbers are increasing every day. In January 2016 itself we added 10 new clients. I like to spend quite a bit of time training my team which results in the excellent quality of work we provide. We all enjoy sports. I have taken up rowing inspired by Sara and Sammy represents the County in playing pool. He is also a long distance cyclist.
What’s in store for you in the future?
We are expanding fast, hiring and training more young people. We have an enthusiastic team and associates including Financial Advisor, Grants bid writing expert and a Business Mentor. We also help clients prepare their business plans and forecasts to help them fund their business. So we offer much more than just the standard accounting services. Watermill Accounting should be the go to accountants for entrepreneurs and start ups.
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