HOW THE NUMBER-CRUNCHER BECAME THE GAME-CHANGER
Written on the 8 September 2015 by Paris Faint
WHEN Accodex Partners CEO Chris Hooper (pictured) opened his first accounting firm, he didn't expect that four years on he would be running an international start-up set on changing the face of the industry altogether.
Early on in his career Hooper noticed that while he was passionate about crunching numbers for his clients, he struggled to deal with the business-based challenges that come with running a practice.
"All I ever wanted to do was focus on delivering good accounting work for my clients, but in the context of starting a business I had to be good at everything else" says Hooper.
"I didn't know anything about marketing, technology, IT or HR, and I noticed that other accountants my age were having similar frustrations."
By searching for a method to cut out 'the business man' to make way for 'the accountant,' Accodex Partners was born.
Accodex has developed a cloud-based platform which helps partnering freelance accountants find their feet by streamlining administrative and back-end functions, meaning they are only left with one real job, finding clients and servicing them.
The software also lets businesses plug in to cost-effective accounting services including advisory, compliance, tax returns, investment and planning.
Hooper says his partnership with Innovyz CFO Michael Wilczynski last year played a significant part in Accodex's shift from simple accounting specialists to industry game-changers set on making life easier for the budding practitioner.
"I started the company about four years ago which was a general accounting firm, but it wasn't until the merger with Michael that we went into a complete change in business model and structure," says Hooper.
"It was a learning curve going into a business with a generic proposition and, in the process, discovering what the market needed and where we were going to fit within it."
Accodex have recently welcomed a new Californian partner in addition to other prospective ties currently in the works with Sydney, Melbourne and US-based businesses.
The company, which is focused on becoming the staple name in its niche, also secured $180,000 in a recent seed funding round which will be invested in continuing to build the existing company infrastructure, in lieu of expansion into other markets.
Hooper puts his own success down to an insatiable thirst for market knowledge, explaining he has pored over strategies from as far back as the 1400s for every shred of insight.
"I'm obsessed with the industry, I watch it like a hawk," says Hooper.
"Next to every other accountant on the face of the planet I don't think anyone's more interested in the future of the industry than I am, and we are now in a unique blue ocean product market that came off the back of that obsession."
Looking then to Accodex's own future, the company aims to expand globally with an ambitious 10-year target of reaching 1000 accounting partners.
"We won't be satisfied to move into other service offerings until we have perfected our product and exhausted this market," says Hooper.
The company achieved its first seven-figure revenue in FY15.
Author: Paris Faint