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Are You Getting Value For Money?

960 640 Marta Bellamoli, Marketing Co-ordinator

Value for Money Image

“You get what you pay for”. “Buy it right or buy it twice”. We have all heard these phrases and have experienced inexpensive products or services not working as we had hoped.
For some clients, price remains the key focus when making fundamental decisions. While this thinking may be correct when applied to goods, when it comes to corporate services there is actually a more important driver to finding the right solution: value.

“While price may have a short-term benefit, it will be value that delivers the true benefit over the long-term.”

Running a business incurs costs, what that business charges its clients will not only need to cover those costs but will need to represent value for the client. This means clients will be faced with a cost/benefit consideration.

While price may have a short-term benefit, it will be value that delivers the true benefit over the long-term. This is particularly true when looking for specific services such as establishing trusts, company incorporation, structuring for tax purposes, to name but a few. Every corporate services provider works differently and those services could vary.

Focusing solely on headline price makes it extremely difficult to establish the overall value and can lead clients accepting a solution that could not be completely right for them based on pricing only. But focusing on value does not mean that price should be ignored, but proper enquiry will help see beyond the cost alone and understand the longer-term benefits provided by that service provider.

The real value (long-term benefit) comprises of three main elements: trust, transparency and simplicity. So, when it comes to Abacus how do these elements shape up?

“The value of transparency can’t be underestimated. Transparency is all about information; it embodies honesty and open communication.”

Relationships have to be built on trust. It can be tracked over time and it is mainly based on reliability and availability. The reason trust is important is because everyone feels more confident knowing that there is someone in the company who will help in case of need. Abacus has always taken the approach of developing personal professional relationships with each of its clients, enabling us to really know client’s businesses, ensuring the team provides a bespoke service and prompt support whenever required.

The value of transparency can’t be underestimated. Transparency is all about information; it embodies honesty and open communication. At Abacus we provide our clients with fee information and estimates. There are some fixed fee elements plus time charges that are appropriate to the varying responsibility levels. This represents a much fairer arrangement than a percentage of assets held.

That brings us to simplicity. Simplicity is what it says: keep it simple. For example, if structuring or receiving tax advice is complex this requires a higher degree of knowledge. Abacus applies its knowledge, understanding and expertise to ensure that the services provided meet the objectives of each client and their respective comprehension.

Looking beyond the final cost and gaining a true understanding of long-term value is what has helped thousands of businesses find the right provider and a priceless long-lasting collaboration.
If a service is unique, the ‘value curve’ that it forms is also unique.


How To Protect Your Company Profit

1024 673 Nick Hyde


Every company that imports and agrees a price on an order for future delivery is going to be exposed to currency exchange rate changes. Usually the case will be that you’ll have to pay the factory a deposit so they can start manufacturing the product and when manufacturing is complete, the balance will need to be paid. This time from agreeing the contract, to actually receiving the goods may be months.

Of course in that time the rates of exchange will be changing every day. This may be in your favour or not. If the rates move against you that product has now cost you more and in turn reduced your profit margin. With the market as flippant as it is at the moment and no one really knowing what ‘Article 50’ and ‘Brexit’ mean, how can you protect yourself?

One option is booking a forward contract. This simply is securing a fixing amount of currency to buy or sell, on an agreed date, at a fixed rate of exchange. You can book a forward contract up to a year in the future. What this in effect does is answer the question: what will this currency cost on this date in the future? This can be done for either buying or selling currency and works the same way.

As an example: you have agreed to do a creative job for a client based in Europe and agree the price in their local currency. Payment terms might easily be up to 60 days. So while you wait for the client to make that payment to you, your profile is at risk as the exchange rates are moving all the time. Securing a forward contract to sell the Euros for a future date will protect you and the company profit.

Forward contracts can of any size and forward to any date within 12 months. So even if you undertake one contract a year or a hundred, you can manage each one separately and ensure you are trading as safely and smart as possible.

Theresa May has highlighted a timescale that stretches far into the future as to when we will leave the European Union. It will be interesting to see what other speakers pronounce during the days, weeks and months ahead and how this impacts the confidence in the pound.

How protected are you and your clients? Understanding the businesses requirements going forward and agreeing a strategic plan can make the difference between profit and loss. Especially as the impact of ‘Brexit’ is still very much unknown.