Johns plays to strengths

ANDERSEN Australia had barely moved in with Ernst & Young this week when well-known former Andersen tax partner, Keith Johns, opened his doors in West Perth.

Buoyed by unanimous encouragement from colleagues, friends and mentors, and an enthusiastic response from the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia, Mr Johns has made his move after just two months of deliberation, but more than 16 years of local, national and international market observation.

K D Johns & Co, comprising Mr Johns, senior manager Martina Crowley, accountant Nichola D’Monte and trainee accountant Sheree Hayward, is offering a one-stop taxation planning, risk management and advisory service, including wealth creation, family business consulting, estate and succession planning and superannuation advice.

Mr Johns said his decision was a response to market demand for personal service and sophisticated custom-made solutions at fair and appropriate rates, but also one he has made in recognition of his professional and personal strengths.

Proposed new standards and regulations to ensure independence between auditing and non-audit services also added to the opportunity.

“It will definitely work,” Mr Johns said. “I’m responding to what clients have been telling me, and have colleagues in the east doing exactly the same thing. We’ll share alliances and ideas.”

Assisted by many such close links - with clients, brokers, financial service specialists and legal personnel, Mr Johns is looking forward to offering total project management, broking appropriate services to clients who will always have the final choice.

“Project management of taxation risk is a huge weight on public companies,” he said. “We can show how easily it can be controlled.”

This bank of alliances, which are both professional and personal, have meant Mr Johns has not been hard-up for local offers of monetary backing.

One such association already formed by the new company is an in-principle agreement with Australian Heritage Group Limited.

Australian Heritage company secretary Greg MacMillan said the proposed new investment underscored the boutique investment banking group’s focus on specialist financial services.

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