Climate change consultancy cashes in with R&D claim from Chamber Member Access2Finance

Zoe Bagnall
Content and PR Executive | Business West
13th September 2021

A Bristol based consultancy company which focuses on energy consumption and renewable technology has claimed a substantial sum of money in research and development (R&D) tax credits after working with Access2Funding. The money has been used to partially fund a new team member and the rest is being put towards the marketing budget.

Darren Evans Ltd aims to help the construction industry to better understand the impact of climate change, advising on both domestic and commercial property. 

Darren Evans, the founder of the company said:

“This kind of business wouldn’t have existed 10 years ago but with government targets being set with regards to climate change, we are constantly adapting our services. 

“All the legislation changes can be difficult to keep up with and that’s what we’re here for - to bridge the gap between those and the construction industry professionals.”

Access2Funding, members of the British Chambers of Commerce in Bristol, were sought out by Darren Evans Ltd after they had used another service provider which had a claims process that was unclear. Darren Ltd also reported that the necessary diligence was not undertaken leading to the claim amount being lower than it could have been. Darren said:

“The previous supplier not only didn’t get as much money back as Access2Funding, but they made me do a lot of the writing up myself. Access2Funding made it a lot easier – I just had regular catch ups with the team, and they did the work for me.

“I’ve recommended Access2Funding to four other businesses because I thought the process was so easy and I wouldn’t recommend the previous supplier to anyone!”

After rebranding in 2019, Access2Funding now employs 74 staff, an increase of 58 in two years, and hopes to have 100 by the end of the financial year. The company is formed of a team of tax specialists, experienced business growth experts and skilled client account managers, working with businesses to uncover hidden funds. 

Research from the British Chambers of Commerce shows over half of firms are looking to access finance over the next twelve months, but a quarter of respondents describe their current level of debt as either ’unmanageable’ or ‘high and manageable’. To find out more about how to manage your business’ cash flow read our blog or visit Business West’s Finance Hub to find out more about the finance solutions available for your business.

Tracey Kovcas, the Access2Funding’s Business Development Executive who has 25 years in finance said:

“Our team of specialists reviewed Darren Ltd’s claim from the previous year, and it was noticeable that it didn’t include all factors involved in R&D such as wages/subcontractors costs.

“This meant that the team at A2F were able to speak to the client to uncover even more R&D in the business and write up and submit a new report to HMRC.”

Access2Funding initially joined the Chamber to network with a professional organisation who could offer support in areas they wouldn’t otherwise have access to. Tracey says:

“There’s no hard sell or targets!  Information is easily available for every stage of your business including free advice and courses.

“Phil Bridgeman, the Head of Membership, gave me a great overview of what was on offer prior to me joining. Luke Marshall, the Customer Engagement Executive was great in providing advice on blog opportunities.”

Tracey says that the main tip she would offer businesses is to ensure you have a strong brand story:

“The best advice when starting out is stop over pitching your product, find good business relationships and tell a story that can be remembered that creates a picture of product/service.” 

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