Johnston Carmichael appoints new head of entrepreneurial taxes

Johnston Carmichael appoints new head of entrepreneurial taxes

Stephen Oates

Johnston Carmichael has bolstered its specialist support for entrepreneurial businesses and investors with a new head of entrepreneurial tax based in the Central Belt.

Joining from French Duncan, Stephen Oates has more than 17 years’ experience in tax, with significant expertise in working with owner-managed businesses.

In his new role, he will head up the entrepreneurial taxes team, and work with advisers across the business to support the delivery of venture capital and share schemes.

Based in the Central Belt, Mr Oates will operate as a national resource and support a wide variety of clients across a range of sectors including technology, life sciences and food and drink.

Mr Oates said: “I am looking forward to the opportunity to lead and develop Johnston Carmichael’s growing Entrepreneurial Taxes Team. My personal ambitions align closely to the firm’s growth plans and it’s great to be part of a business that focuses strongly on its people and culture.

“I will be working closely with teams across the business, to review clients’ objectives and work out what is the most tax efficient way of achieving them.”

He added that he anticipates increased demand for share scheme advice as the uncertain economic outlook continues.

He continued: “As the cost-of-living crisis continues, and cash is more difficult to come by, companies will be looking at ways to retain and reward their best staff without awarding big pay rises. Share schemes such as the EMI and Company Share Option Plans (CSOP) will be significant in helping businesses to secure talent and prevent them from being poached. I see them being particularly helpful for family businesses fending off competition from bigger players.”

Susie Walker, partner and head of tax, said: “Stephen brings terrific energy, experience and enthusiasm to the firm, and his vast experience of advising clients on specialist schemes is a welcome addition to the team.

“Over the coming weeks and months, Stephen will be out and about, getting to know our people and clients, and making sure they are accessing all of the reliefs available to them, particularly in the areas of share schemes and venture capital schemes.”

The firm, which has 12 offices in Scotland and a growing London office, has adopted fully hybrid working enabling its people to service a diverse range of clients no matter where they are based across the UK.

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