New leader for PKF Francis Clark’s growing Bristol office

Financial Services | South West
Paul Bray
Paul Bray

PKF Francis Clark has appointed a new head of its Bristol office to spearhead the firm’s continued expansion in the city and surrounding area.

Paul Bray, who has taken over as lead partner following the retirement of Mike Lea, will be working closely with corporate tax partner Stuart Rogers and audit partner Paul Putnam to deliver a comprehensive range of accountancy and advisory services for ambitious businesses in the region.

It comes as PKF Francis Clark strengthens its Bristol team with the appointment of audit manager Owain Lloyd, financial planning consultant Kaz Dev and tax assistant Tom Weatherhogg.

Paul Bray said: “I’m proud of the team we have built here and excited about the opportunity to lead the next phase of our growth in a city I know and love, having worked in Bristol for more than 30 years.

“We have come a long way since we opened the office 18 months ago, as the team has been steadily winning new clients and gaining a larger foothold in the city and wider region. Some experienced hires with great reputations in the Bristol business community have been key to this success. The team have been working extremely hard to help our clients succeed and I’m grateful for their efforts, especially given the challenges brought by Covid-19.

“In addition to audit, accounts and tax compliance work, it’s pleasing that we have been asked to help with a variety of other projects thanks to the benefits of having a full-service office based in central Bristol. The tax consultancy team have been very busy with work such as share schemes and restructuring, while our corporate finance director Sam Phillips and his team have been involved in some significant deals which have led to ongoing compliance activities.

“There are exciting times ahead and I’m delighted to welcome Owain, Kaz and Tom. They join us at a busy time and will play an important role in serving our growing client base.”

Paul Bray, who specialises in looking after the tax affairs of owner-managers, started his career with HM Revenue & Customs before spending 22 years with a national accountancy firm, where he qualified as a chartered tax advisor and worked with businesses ranging from start-ups to large corporates. He joined PKF Francis Clark in June 2019 as a partner at the newly opened office in Victoria Street.

Paul Putnam, who joined PKF Francis Clark earlier this year to lead the audit team in Bristol, added: “We can see a gap in the market and genuine potential for us to continue growing in Bristol, working with law firms and banks to support their clients, as well as attracting new businesses from the wider region. In the city and surrounding area, we are seeing growing demand for both audit and business services expertise, while building relationships with intermediaries further afield.”

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