Crunchers and the Fair Tax Mark

This is really too gorgeous not to be repeated. And please do spread the workd.

The Fair Tax Mark, that very important addition of the Tax Justice Campaign and the career of Richard Murphy, has just signed up its first accountancy practice.

We’re thrilled to announce that we have awarded the Mark to Crunchers South London, the very first accountancy practice to gain it. It joins FTSE listed companies such as SSE Plc and Go-Ahead Group in a growing list of companies taking a stand against aggressive tax avoidance.

Crunchers South London is leading in its sector by taking this bold step and we firmly believe its clients will be proud to work with such an upstanding practice. Winning the Mark means Crunchers South London has committed to not abusing tax havens or tax avoidance schemes and to apply the gold standard on tax transparency. We hope its leadership will encourage many more accountancy practices to follow.

Stirring and stunning news I think we all agree.

Crunchers South London’s Director, Damion Viney

What made you apply for the Fair Tax Mark?

As an accountant, I’m highly aware of the importance of taxation. I’d been following the various ethical issues around it for a while, including reading Nicholas Shaxson’s acclaimed book, Treasure Islands, and I had become very concerned. I thought there was a great need for a tax-related equivalent of the Fairtrade Mark: a clear cut way for companies to say they’re doing the right thing and a positive reason for them to do so – the Fair Tax Mark fulfils that need.

What benefits do you see for your business from gaining the Fair Tax Mark?

Differentiation is vital in any sector and that’s very true within accountancy. Being the first certified accountancy practice is a great way to stand out. The tide has turned on what’s acceptable in tax responsibility for businesses. More and more companies are realising that you make more money by focusing on profit creation than tax manipulation. Crunchers South London thinks that by gaining the Mark, it’s making a strong statement in line with what clients want to hear.

What would you say to other small businesses considering gaining the Mark?

Small businesses like us would do well to get behind this scheme and gain the Mark. They’re at a massive disadvantage in the market because they can’t access the same tax avoidance schemes as larger companies. Most small businesses are committed to supporting the local and national economy and the Fair Tax Mark is a way for them to signal this to customers while encouraging a more level playing field.

Quite so. A matter of great importance:

You’re being terribly unfair. Crunchers is clearly a company of enormous importance. It’s sole director (Damion Viney) is listed as ‘unemployed’ and an ‘accounting technician’ on Companies House and the accounts filed at Companies House (abbreviated) show whopping net assets of £729. The accounts are unaudited but I’m sure the FTM people will have done a thorough review of this prestigious company.

A blinding success I hope we will all agree?

27 thoughts on “Crunchers and the Fair Tax Mark”

  1. “Winning the Mark means Crunchers South London has committed to not abusing tax havens”

    So no more of

    Caymans, you’re all cvnts
    The Cook Islands are full of cocksuckers
    Monagasques masturbate all day.


  2. Who would sign up with a firm of accountants which bragged that it would do fuck all to minimise their tax bill? It’s like inviting the Temperance League to design your pubs.

  3. Interesting company Crunchers South London Limited. Threatened with striking off by Companies House in January 2011. Mr Viney bought the company some time after.

    But we shouldn’t rush to judgement. Crunchers (it would seem) is a franchise operation and here’s what they had to say about Mr Viney joining them in 2011….

    “Damion had no experience of running an accounting practice and only had a few months experience working for a firm of Chartered Accountants.”

  4. “Interested

    Who would sign up with a firm of accountants which bragged that it would do fuck all to minimise their tax bill?”

    In all honesty I’m struggling to call this a ‘firm of accountants’. Seems awfully like a one man band (or maybe his wife as well? Of course, not publishing full accounts does make it difficult to judge such things. It is hard to wonder why a ardent supporter of openness and tax transparency only publishes abbreviated, unaudited accounts….but since he paid some money to the FTM people I’m sure they were rigorous in their review.

  5. Well, doesn’t sound much like they’ve been helping their clients avoid tax. Or, in fact, helping their clients much at all…

  6. My mind wants to read FTM not as “Fair tax mark” but “Female to Male”.

    So less Tax more transgender.


  7. “Corporation Tax – the Chancellor announced a reduction in Corporation Tax to 17% by 2020. This is obviously welcome to anyone paying Corporation Tax and interestingly moves the goalposts once again regarding tax when considering trading through a Ltd Co or unincorporated business.” from Crunchers South London website. The Murphatollah will be aghast at this egregious exploitation of the law.

  8. Yes, yes, I know this is quite unfair, and Damion is clearly a wonderful chap and all that – but, hmmm Richard, did you do your due dligence properly..:)

    “I had a meeting with Damion of Crunchers to discuss the possibility of changing my tax status from Self-employed to that of a Limited Company. I found that Damion explained the differences and benefits of both clearly…

  9. Oh dear Richard, I think you may have slipped up on this one..?!

    Blog on Year-End Tax Planning

    Delaying Income

    Where an individual is reaching one of the tax thresholds for personal tax, it will be worth considering options for reducing income this year. For Sole Traders or Partnerships this could involve delaying work until April. For Company Directors this could be achieved by delaying salary or dividends.

    Blog on Limited Unlimited


    That said there remains a significant tax advantage of the Ltd status. Companies continue to pay tax at a lower rate than individuals. If money can be retained in a Ltd Company and does not have to be distributed to its shareholders, less tax is paid.

    This gives Company Shareholders the ability to stay in control of their tax bill to some extent. Restricting the flow from company to individual in profitable years and augmenting it in leaner years so as to avoid higher rate personal tax rates.


    Yes. of course, it’s all bog standard stuff for an accountant, even a technician (MAAT), to be talking about, but I’m struggling with how this (and lots more on there) reconciles with Richard’s slightly more “colourful” agenda..:)

    Oh I know how it reconciles – he paid the fee!?

  10. Delaying the payment of salary or dividends to avoid higher rates of tax?

    Incorporate to lower the amount of tax you pay?

    “Accounting company given Fair Tax Mark gives advice on avoiding tax.”

    I didn’t write that headline, it wrote itself.

    Or, as PF says, they’re a fine upstanding company, because they paid the FTM people to say so.

  11. Bloke in Costa Rica

    Who in their right mind would get their books done by a firm that sounds like it’s a vegan snack bar?

  12. BICR

    Crunchers presumably is meant to signify number crunchers?

    The basic conclusion must be that the FTM is an utter unmitigated failure and cannot have any prospect of lasting much longer can it? It’s also a pretty good indication of how fvcking useless Murphy is as a businessman if the number of awards can be so laughably short of projections.

  13. Good job professional bodies don’t have standards about providing best advice to clients regarding of your personal considerations.
    From the interview it sounds like sour grapes, thet can’t do this tax avoidance stuff asthey are too small so will just pretend it’s an ethical stance not lack of capability.

  14. Great name.

    Makes me think of Norman Hunter, Billy Bremner and Ron Harris demolishing someone’s testicles.

    Or a really average accountancy practice.

  15. Just based off of the information here it seems like Crunchers is a small struggling accounting firm. Obviously if they were good accountants they wouldn’t be struggling. In order to increase business they were faced with two options, offer a better product or pander to idiots. They merely decided to go with the second, easier option, and are thanking Murphy privately for the free advertising.

  16. You’d think someone with his profile could have got loads of companies signing up simply by being nice to people on the Left and pushing his product.

    But being able to start a fight alone in a vacuum, he couldn’t manage even that.

  17. I’m rather in favour of the FTM. Companies pepper their promotional material with all sorts of awards, accreditations and accolades. Even school gates are plastered with phrases like ‘OFSTED outstanding in arts and sports’.
    We can read between the lines and chuckle at what this really means.
    So long as it’s not compulsory.

  18. From LinkedIn, we learn that Damion Viney has one recommendation….

    And from Facebook, has studied Government and European Community Studiies (sic)….

    Cutting edge of the profession, obviously.

  19. Let’s see

    Professional advisor (pa) to client (c)
    Here’s the options you have, however I would advise against Option A as it reduces your tax the most and HMRC is looking at this area closely

    C-ok but let’s go with the avoidance scheme as who likes paying tax

    PA- ummmm as a holder of the FTM I can’t actually do that

    C-the. I’ll take my business elsewhere

    Alternatively PA can do as C requests and I wonder what will happen to their FTM

  20. As a business owner I pay for an accountant.
    To me that says the accountant works for me on the things given to them. Including giving me advice that’s best for my business based on what they know about it and my plans for the future.

    Do they work for me?

    No intention of using this tax marked company, its a good indication of who not to use anyway.

  21. Arf:

    “Although I am a qualified accountant (MAAT), I learned most about business from founding and running a charity for many years.

    “The charity generated over £1m in revenue and whilst it was a not for profit it operated very like any other small business and taught me many less

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