Looking back on the starting position of the tax advisory sector, the timing could not have been better. The new income tax law came into force in 2000, which was unique in the world in terms of corporate income tax: companies’ reinvested profits were not taxed. “This fundamental change in the tax system created more demand for advice,” says Järve, who is in charge of the tax advisory business, which has been the company’s largest advisory line in terms of turnover for many years. Tax advisers need never worry about running out of work, no matter what the times are like. There is a reason why people say that the only certain things in this world are death and taxes.
Järve admits that compared to the nineties and the beginning of the new century – which were the heyday of offshore companies being used for tax optimisation, with some clients even asking for batteries to be removed from mobile phones when discussing their company’s tax affairs in the boardroom – tax discipline has improved. “Everything is more civilised these days, but there are more rules, norms and bureaucracy, which on the one hand is a headache, but on the other hand it gives us work,” Järve says.
Increasing internationalisation also provides work for advisors, as Estonian companies that have established themselves in different parts of the world need information on the laws, taxes and other important business matters in the destination country, not to mention the usual support services such as accounting and auditing. Of course, the icing on the cake for the client is the fact that by purchasing all services from one place, they can be sure that when sharing tax or legal advice, advisors can also take into account the economic and accounting nuances of the business.
After all, there are colleagues in accounting or financial advisory at hand with whom the client’s affairs can be discussed. And vice versa: accountants and auditors can talk with their colleagues and advisers about the most complex tax issues or the nuances of accounting for sales and purchases.
One of the areas of business where close cooperation between professionals comes in handy is the world of crypto companies. Anastasia Borovaja, Head of Accounting and Partner, says that accountants would not be able to service crypto companies without a strong tax team. “Working with tax advisers, we are able to understand their business model, although sometimes it’s difficult for the entrepreneurs themselves to explain what exactly they are doing,” Borovaja admits. She says the interest of crypto entrepreneurs in accounting, tax, financial and legal advice is so great that it is not possible to serve all of them.