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40 Under 40 winner of the day: Miriam Holme

40 Under 40

South Australian accountant, lawyer and financial adviser Miriam Holme wants to make taxation services “fun and fab”.

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Holme founded Flinders Accounting Bookkeeping (FAB) Tax Accountants in 2011 with the aim of providing affordable and holistic financial advice.

FAB Tax Accountants offers tax return and business services to a range of clients – including university students, tradespeople, professionals, retirees and small business owners – and is driven by Holme’s passion to make accounting relevant and understandable.

Holme has undergraduate and post-graduate qualifications in economics, law and accounting, and is accredited across all sectors.

While studying a Bachelor of Commerce at the University of Adelaide and working full-time in her family’s business, Holme helped her extended family and friends with their bookkeeping and tax returns.

This was the beginnings of FAB Tax Accountants.

Founded at a kitchen table over eight years ago, FAB Tax Accountants now has 6000 clients across Australia.

Holme also founded two other companies, FAB Bookkeeping Services and FAB Legal, and is the managing director of Alpha Wealth Advisors.

She also produces a podcast with her two sisters, Talitha and Ferial, called Sisters that Slay, that highlights the success stories of entrepreneurs in Adelaide.

FAB Tax Accountants won the Tax and Compliance Firm of the Year and the Community Engagement Program of the Year prizes at the SMSF and Accounting Awards in 2017.

In June, Holme was named in InDaily’s 40 Under 40, which recognises the best and brightest young business people in South Australia.

What is the single most important lesson you have learnt in your business career so far?

I have learnt to back myself and stay true to who I am and what I stand for. I want to make sure everyone in the community has access to affordable and proactive accounting advice that they can understand.

Also, even if I have an idea that goes against the grain, I need to listen to what the people want, trust myself and run with it. I operate in a very traditional accounting and financial space and I strategically changed my business name to “FAB Tax Accountants” because I wanted to stand out from the crowd and the typical accountant stereotype. I wanted to convey that tax can actually be fun and fab!

What do you believe are the strengths of doing business in South Australia? 

South Australia is an engaged community – if you provide an amazing service then people are more than happy to refer their family and friends. I have built my business to serve thousands of clients, who have heard of us based mainly on word of mouth and our genuine need to care about helping people. I have found that South Australians are relatable, down to earth and want to help and encourage each other to succeed.

I am so grateful for the loyalty that my clients have shown me on my business journey, which started at the kitchen table eight years ago.

What do you believe are the weak points of conducting business in South Australia? 

When I compare my business clients, who operate in the eastern states, to South Australia, there are sometimes noticeable differences in the volume of work or opportunities available. However, this doesn’t seem to deter business operators in South Australia and there are plenty of strengths that outweigh the weak points. It has never deterred me and I revel in the opportunity to become a big fish in a smaller pond.

Do you see your future in South Australia? 

Yes, being a mum of three I am very close to my family and they are all based in South Australia. I can easily travel to other states or countries if needed for business, and technology has broken a lot of barriers, like being able to operate on a national and global basis.

I now have clients across Australia and plan to base myself and our head office in South Australia. I also host a podcast called Sisters that Slay which promotes Adelaide businesses, entrepreneurs and people of influence. I am passionate about showcasing the talent that Adelaide has to the world.

How can the state encourage more of its young leaders to stay? 

I was discussing this with a friend who moved to Melbourne, and they commented that seeing my success with business highlights what’s possible. I believe that Adelaide is the best place to live and grow a business, and it is great to see people bringing back their experience and knowledge to South Australia. As a community, we can continue to showcase the amazing qualities and opportunities that South Australia has while subtly enticing young leaders to stay or return.

To see the full list of 40 winners go here.

InDaily is profiling each of the winners – go here to read more.

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