Category Archives: Miles Grady

Miles Grady Update

Miles is pleased to update the following changes:

Miles Grady Work Update have moved into fantastic new offices in Wilmslow. I am pleased with the interior refit which I helped lead. I studied, Google etc to understand how the outside feel can help staff motivation:

cloud accountant london

Miles Grady wood lift surround

CLoud Accountants Manchester

Miles Grady designed desk dividers

Miles Grady Personal Update

We are now a family of 6, with the addition of child number 4, a beautiful little girl.

We still have 2 dogs and roughly 20 chickens! I try and not get involved with the chickens but especially like the Blue (Manchester City) eggs!

Miles Grady manchester City Eggs

Miles Grady’s Manchester City Blue Eggs

PayMatters rebrand as Umbrella

Paymatters rebrand to Umbrella and to launch

I am delighted to announce the purchase of which perfectly reflects the services that are currently offered through PayMatters.

Miles Grady said “The umbrella brand will reflect the vibrant and entrepreneurial spirit of the contractors that we assist. It is without doubt the best domain name that was available and the reason we actively pursued it. We want to create a brand and business that people want to deal with and work for. Our new offices will also reflect this with plans including astro turf on the floor and bright and airy workplaces with relaxation and games areas. Our aim is that Umbrella will be the number one name that people refer to when they talk about contractor services. The change will reflect a new era in the business which will be lead by Stewart Davis, CEO and Jonathan Biddle, COO”.

Miles Grady is a founder of Paymatters Limited and negotiated the purchase on

As part of the rebrand PayMatters Limited has been renamed Umbrella-Company limited and PayMatters Accountancy Services LLP will become Umbrella Accountants LLP.


Our new website will be launched in the next 2 weeks:

Miles Grady

This is just a little about me, Miles Grady.

I was born in 1967 but still feel 20 something (OK 30 something!).

I have a wife, 3 children and one on the way. 2 dogs (Golden Retrievers), 20 chickens and quite a few fish.

I love watching sport on the TV and going to watch Manchester City. I like playing golf (and was once a single figure handicap), sailing, speed boats and driving. I enjoy walking the dogs, skiing (après ski) and mountain biking. In my mind I can ice skate but when I recently tried after 30 years or so found that I can’t. I still have ambitions of doing a marathon.

I can do the Rubik’s Cube in sub 40 seconds and even wrote a book on the subject.

I have previously worked at KPMG Peat Marwick, TSB, Mazars Neville Russell and CIS. I was key in setting-up and running Harrington Brooks, One Advice, Allclear Finance, PayMatters LLP, Paymatters Limited and PayMatters Accountancy Services LLP.

If you would like to discuss Paymatters reviews or even have a complaint about any of the above companies I am happy to listen. I strongly believe complaints and reviews are the best way for businesses to develop and grow.

I am happy to reward any suggestions that improve my business.

Best Regards,

Miles Grady BA Econ (Hons) ACA

Miles Grady – how to make swimming lengths easier

I’m currently on a big health kick for September. I have even played football for the first time in 10 years and tennis for the first time in 5.

One of my favourite exercise though us swimming.

One thing I always have tried to do us set myself a target ie must do 40 lengths today. What I’ve found though us it’s very easy to give up before reaching 40.

40 always seems such a long way off that I often find myself stopping say at 30. Instead of counting to 40 I have tried numerous things like breaking it down to 4 units if 10 or even 20 then 10 then 5 then 3 and 2 so it gets easier at the end.

What I’ve now done though is change my target. It is much easier to set yourself a time goal rather than counting lengths ie if an average length is 30 seconds then set yourself a target if 20 minutes. By doing this what you find is you turn off focusing on how far left you have but instead your mind goes blank and you just end up looking at your watch every 5 minutes or so.

It really works for me and I hope it does you.

Miles Grady

Miles Grady discusses James Caan’s Entrepreneur Tips

Having recently published my own top tips for business start-ups it was interesting to compare these to James Caan’s of Dragons Den fame). Especially as James Caan is a leading light in the recruitment industry and a successful serial entrepreneur. His full article is available:

I am pleased that a number of the key popints we raise are very similar so I must be doing something right.

We both agree that research is critical. As James puts it “Know your customers, competitors and numbers inside out”. Prior to launching a business we have always put a number of months into getting the latest fin stats for the major players. Doing test calls, even becoming a client or an employee, reviewing their paperwork and websites and then most importantly writing our own. Only then would we consider starting and by then you are an industry expert. Google alerts are also great for updates on your chosen industry. Often their recent news articles are a great source of info too.

Don’t reinvent the wheel. We always look at what companies are doing well. The Fasttrack 100 is a great source for this. Also in respect of generating new business what do your better established competitors do? Where do they advertise?

Concentrate on your first order. As a friend said to me once we got our first order in our first business – “Yu’ve got a business now”. Nothing feels better than the first sale. It helps you ensure all your proceeses are in order and gives you the confidence to get more.

Feedback. The most important feedback you get is listening to any complaints. As the MD of the business I always ensure I receive copies of all complaints. Nothing gives you a better feel for the service you’re providing.

Miles Grady is a founding director of PayMatters Limited.

Miles Grady – Rubik’s Cube Champion

Not many people will know this but Miles Grady was a Rubik’s Cube champion back in the 1980’s at the height of the Rubik’s Cube Craze.

The memories of the UK Championship came floofding back this week when on the news were 2 guys who both averaged under 10 seconds for completeing the cube.

Although Miles Grady’s record was 8 seconds this was a one-off when everything slotted into place nicely. To do that time everytime is amazing. At my peek I would everage 35 seconds which I thought was unbeatable.

Miles Grady’s approach to doing the cube was quite methodical:

1. Complete one side.

2. With the completed side at the top do moves to put the bottom corners in their correct positions.

3. Then flip the bottom corners so that they are in the correct position i.e. if the side facing you is orange all 4 corners will now be orange.

(there were 2 basic moves for steps 2 and 3).

4. The next step was to fill the middle row so the whole of the row is complete i.e. the orange side (and the other 3 sides) will now be complete except for the bottom middle section.

5. Move the bottom middle segments to the correct positions.

Job Done.

Miles Grady is now a Chartered Accountant and managing Director of PayMatters Limited and is not as boring as this post may sound!


Miles Grady reviews the New Football Season

As an avid Manchester City fan I cannot wait for the new season. I have been hooked ever since as a 4 year old (in 1971) I was taken to my first match. We were good in those days but then followed a very long baron patch.

Last season was a huge disappointment as Mancini changed our system and it clearly wasn;t as good as the year before. Having watched the pre season frendlies I sense this year we will return to free flowing high scoring City.

Watching United struggle in the transfer market so far and the unsettled Wayne Rooney looking like he wants to move – things are good.

This could however all change if they sign Ronaldo!

Personally I want Spurs to keep Bale because if he left then Real may sell Ronaldo.

Also I want United to keep Rooney as I worry his exit would fund Ronaldo’s purchase.

Not too worried about Chelsea or Arsenal at the moment.

Time will tell. Come on City.

Miles Grady

Miles Grady talks VAT Refunds

My name’s Miles Grady and here are my experiences regarding VAT reclaims and inparticular HMRC’s views on “unjust enrichment”.

In 2002 Debt Management Associates (DMA) won a case versus HMRC that meant that the supply of debt management services should be exempt from VAT. This brought debt management in line with supply of credit and finance.

It was not until 2011 that Paymex/BlairEndersby won a tribunal versus HMRC that VAT on insolvency services (IVA’s) was ruled to be an exempt service too.

What this meant is that no VAT should have ever been charged to clients of debt management businesses such as Harrington Brooks (which Miles Grady was a director at the time) and Baines and Ernst.

What this meant was that as well as not having to charge VAT going forward there was the possibibility that companies had lost out by having to pay VAT previously.

To get a refund from HMRC in relation to earlier VAT payments you have to prove to them (not a simple process!) that “unjust enrichment” would not apply i.e. you will only get a refund that your business can keep if by having had to charge VAT you had lost out. It took Baines and Ernst until 2006 to win their tribunal.

At Harrington Brooks we were able to prove that initially when we started trading and were not registered for VAT we charged a gross fee of X. When we had to become VAT registered due to hitting the turnover limit we kept our gross fee at X and did not increase to X plus VAT. Therefore by becoming VAT registered we had lost out because our net fee dropped.

To ascertain a claim for refund we were required to submit to HMRC revised VAT returns to reflect that our gross fee now was VAT exempt (it wasn’t as simple as claiming for total VAT we had paid on sales as there is also a reduction on VAT you can reclaim on inputs).

In simple terms there was no unjust enrichment because when you are supplying the general public they do not care whether your fee includes VAT or not and are just bothered about what it costs them. If you are selling a product for £100 then the laws of economics dictate that price will remain the same whether you are VAT registered or not i.e. just as many consumers will buy if that £100 includes VAT or not. The very fact we had been told we had to register for VAT when we didn’t meant Harrington Brooks and other debt management businesses had lost money.

It should also be remembered that it is not all good news when a company’s services suddenly become VAT exempt. For example the VAT charged by your suppliers can no longer be reclaimed and hence the true cost of advertising, brochures etc becomes much more expensive.

Harrington Brooks used the professional services of Mazars and Miles Grady would always recommend employing specialist professional advisors when presenting a case to HMRC.

Miles Grady was a director of Harrington Brooks between 1997 and 2010. Miles Grady is currently a director of payMatters Limited and a partner of PayMatters Accountancy Services LLP.

Miles Grady – My Views on Internet trolls

My name’s Miles Grady and I have always had an impeccible image on the internet and to the public who I have dealt with. I would like to think I am an honest, hard working family man and have a professional image as someone who is compliant and safe to deal with.

I am a Chartered Accountant with over 20 years post qualification experience and have worked for bluechip firms such as KPMG, Mazars, CIS and TSB.

I am good at setting up and building companies. I have co-founded business including Harrington Brooks, One Advice, PayMatters and PayMatters Accountancy Services.

Harrington Brooks now has 45,000 clients and employs 550 people.

PayMatters employs over 2,000 flexible workers and turns over £50m per year.

PayMatters Accountancy Services provides accoutancy services for over 1,000 Limited Companies.

Despite all this it is still possible in this day and age for one malicious person to ruin your online image.

The one business that could remove the negative affect of fake posts is google. However, they are reluctant to amend their results. They hide behind the fact that people are entitled to their views and they’re nothing to do with them. The fact is though that nobody would see malicious posts if google didn’t include them in it’s results. They should therefore do more. It is not good enough to say we haven’t posted them.

Twitter are in the news for not doing enough. Hopefully google will be next.

Tripadvisor were in the news as fake reviews can massively affect businesses. There needs to be control over getting reviews removed.

Peoples lives and businesses can be unfairly affected by internet trolls.

Miles Grady

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