July 1, 2018
From working in some of the largest accounting firms in the world, to running Australia’s premier business consultancy advisory, Maxum; Wayne Fraser has developed skills that not only provide businesses with tax solutions, but help them achieve their business goals. We learn about the creative ways he helps small businesses get it right the first time.
Wayne Fraser started his accounting career in South Africa working for global firm Ernst & Young. From there he relocated to New Zealand and worked in the management consulting division at PricewaterhouseCoopers until he was head hunted by KPMG. After several years working with some of the largest accounting firms in the world, Wayne decided to go out on his own, consulting to small businesses.
“The clients were obviously smaller than the clients at the bigger firms but it was the same sort of work. My passion was always in management consulting; looking after businesses,” he says.
Today Wayne’s business, Maxum, is Australia’s premier business consultancy firm, with clients all across the country.
He is a tax specialist and has achieved great tax results for his clients (most of which are referral-based) over the years. But while he’s an expert in tax, Wayne says his passion lies in consulting.
“Although I do find I really get a lot of referrals because of my tax expertise, I do try very hard to discourage clients from having this sole focus on tax. I really encourage them to put tax second, focus on your business and making your business successful,” he says.
When established businesses come to Wayne he says they often admit they should have come to him 20 years prior. Which is why the philosophy at Maxum is, ‘Get it right the first time’.
“We make sure we fully understand everything before we dive in and start giving recommendations, and then we’ll get the structure right, we’ll get it right the first time. And then we’ll start going through a business planning process, understand what their goals are, what they want to achieve and then once we understand what they want to achieve, we’ll talk about a series of action plans,” Wayne explains.
Maxum doesn’t take a cookie cutter approach when assisting their clients. Each plan is tailored to suit the needs of the particular business and covers things like business advice, insolvency and reconstruction, corporate finance, taxation and asset protection.
“It depends on your circumstances and I really think that is our point of differentiation. Because we do have so much experience in the industry we can try and understand our client’s needs, we don’t just hand out standard generic guides,” says Wayne.
After the initial planning process, Wayne guides his clients through every step of the process and will be there if things don’t go according to plan.
“While plans are really important, we are conscious, from my experience, that plans will change … and as plans change, we work with them to change the strategies in order to achieve their new goals and to deal with any problems that come up along the way.”
Wayne takes pride in the fact that his team doesn’t just stop at tax and superannuation, they offer creative solutions for their clients to achieve success.
“It’s no disrespect to the traditional accountant, but we don’t see a lot of value in adding up the numbers and telling you how much money you made last year. That’s great, but that was last year. We look forward, we look at your future – it’s about advice, it’s about being creative, it’s about your future, it’s about achieving your goals.
Maxum’s tips for a successful business:
Create a plan – “By far we find those businesses that succeed are the ones that have a plan. Certainly those plans change over time, but be prepared to have a plan and be prepared to change the plan as we work through it.”
Source a ‘success team’ – “Again, looking at our well over 20 years of experience, our successful businesses have a success team. We’re part of that success team for you. We also have a network of professionals that we work closely with. I have a legal team that we work very closely with. We have some liquidators that we work very closely with. And that’s all part of the process. Because we can’t all be experts everywhere and relying on a success team is really key.”
Have a marketing strategy – “You can have the best business out there, but if you’re not marketing it, there’s really no point.”
Sunshine Coast, Sydney
Phone: 1300 629 029