Name and role: Martin Bown

Organisation: My Management Accountant

Sector: Accountants and Business Advisors

Describe what your organisation does? MMA delivers accountancy services to a growing number of, primarily, owner-managed businesses.

Unlike a ‘traditional’ firm of accountants, our team was set up and is managed by, and employs, individuals who have all spent time working in industry in businesses just like our clients. We bring a professional approach, technical skills, and empathy to the table when working with our clients.

How many staff do you employ? 14

What does your role entail? My role has changed as the team has grown, so whereas it used to involve all aspects of technical accounting for our clients, now it very much focuses on our own business.

Day to day, I work closely with the team regarding service delivery, but more and more focusing on our overall strategic plan of continued growth.

Whilst revenue has consistently increased year on year, we’ve seen that increase accelerate since the start of the pandemic, and we plan on it continuing to accelerate over the next few years, both through delivering more services to our existing clients, or by bringing in new clients altogether.

We also spend a lot time both on developing and strengthening our culture, and on attracting potential new team members who suit our way of working, and to help meet the needs of our expanding client base.

What attracted you to start/operate your business in Huddersfield? My wife and I moved to Kirkburton over 16 years ago because we wanted a more rural lifestyle for ourselves, and a village in which to start and raise a family. I continued to commute to Leeds until the end of 2008 when I finally left employment to start to work for myself, by which time our daughter was almost one. My wife and I both started working for ourselves, sharing parental duties, and working from our home office, so my choice to start the business in Huddersfield was as much lifestyle based as it was because the town is home to an abundance of businesses.

Name some of your biggest business achievements: The one thing that makes me the proudest when I take time to look at what the business has achieved is that we’ve grown from a team of one (me!) beginning life just after the crash in 2008, to now being a team of 14, with others that have previously been employed before deciding to move on elsewhere, all embedded within our culture, wanting to help our clients as much as I did on day one.

It also seems a little bizarre to describe our response to a pandemic as a real achievement, but it was!

What advice would you give to someone looking to set up or relocate their business in Huddersfield? Do it. Depending what your business does means you have access to a strong base of local businesses, proximity to Leeds, Sheffield, and Manchester, and good links to be able to travel further afield, and of course working remotely from home…..or a mixture of all!

What are your hopes for Huddersfield 10 years from now (2030)? That some really positive change has taken place in the town centre to make it a place that people naturally want to gravitate to and spend time in.

On a personal level, what do you love most about the town? I love its proximity to so much unspoilt and stunning countryside, and whether I’m out there enjoying it or looking at it as I drive to and from home I feel very fortunate that my family and I live here, and it’s something I tell my children they shouldn’t take for granted.

Where is your favourite place to eat/drink in Huddersfield? If I’m heading out for a pint then it’s usually to Magic Rock or The Grove. The pizzas at Bar Maroc are superb, the atmosphere in Kwas is lovely, and whilst I’ve not been there since before lockdown, the curries from Saim’s on Bradford Road are terrific.

Are there any recommendations or local knowledge you’d like to share with a visitor? Arrive by train so that you immediately see some of the majestic buildings in the town centre, and then after having refreshments from a local independent business, head up into the hills above the town.  Above all make sure you meet the locals because, like anywhere else in Yorkshire, they’ll give you a friendly welcome and will always be ready to have a chat!

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