Alexander Knight & Co supports festive campaign to support those experiencing homelessness

After more than a decade of designing bespoke cards, printing and posting – this year, we have decided to make a donation to charity instead.

Crisis at Christmas is an annual Christmas appeal that helps provide warm meals, shelter, support and companionship to those experiencing homelessness. We have made a donation to support Crisis in continuing its good work.

Crisis at Christmas supported by Alexander Knight & Co accountants in Hale Altrincham

We wish all our clients, staff and professional associates a ‘Murray Christmas’ and a Happy New Year.




Alexander Knight & Co wins ‘International Client Experience of the Year 2023’ 

Award for accountants in Hale, Altrincham

We were delighted to win an award based on our successful accountancy work for international-based clients who have operations in the UK. 

At the 2023 MGI UK & Ireland conference for partners & managers, which was held recently in Edinburgh, Murray and Kate collected the award on behalf of Alexander Knight & Co for ‘International Client Experience of the Year 2023’.

We became a member of the MGI Worldwide in 2020. Member firms, which comprise 8,500 professionals  operate in more than 100 countries.

Joining the network has bolstered our international trade links and has enabled us to collaborate with accountancy firms in other jurisdictions.

Multiple companies headquartered in Canada, USA, Germany, Holland, Greece, Denmark, Switzerland, Malaysia and Singapore have appointed our team to support them with a number of specialist services that we provide including Audit, Tax and Advisor.

Murray Patt, founder of Alexander Knight & Co, said:

“We are pleased to have developed our international links and delighted to have won this award. It’s great recognition for our staff who are providing a fantastic service for our clients headquartered in the UK and aboard.”









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Greg Monk joins Alexander Knight & Co

Greg Hands joins Altrincham Accountants Alexander Knight & Co at their Hale office in 2023

We are delighted to extend a warm welcome to Greg Monk who joins our Audit & Accounts team based in Hale. Greg studied Maths & Finance at the University of Liverpool and has now joined our growing team.

Greg is currently studying the ACA to become an ICAEW Chartered Accountant and we are delighted to support him in his career progression as an accountant.
PS – we are still growing our team. Take a look at the latest roles here. 

Welcome to the team Greg!

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A success story in exporting to the USA

We were delighted to catch up with the team at GaraDry, an innovative product design company, which won a prestigious King’s Award for Enterprise earlier this year.

GaraDry designs, manufactures, and sells the world’s largest range of threshold seals for residential garage doors and commercial doors.

We caught up with founder Ashley Smith who was happy to share some of his key experiences in cracking open the giant American marketplace…

We launched our USA subsidiary in the USA in 2017 (GaraDry LLC), to handle strong interest from Americans in our products and we also launched a fulfilment centre in Tennessee to ship transatlantic orders quickly.

“People shouldn’t be frightened of exporting to the USA. My view, as an online retailer is that it should be as easy to sell your goods in Baltimore as it is in Blackpool if you have the right infrastructure, processes and people on your team.

“The impact of fluctuating exchange rates can make a huge difference to the viability of your export model. As well as margins being heavily dependent on these fluctuations, you’ve also got inflation to contend with on both sides of the pond.

“Shipping costs have stabilised recently but there was a time last year when the cost of a container to the States tripled in the space of just a few short months. The volume of containers to the USA reduced, putting up prices for everyone. You need to be very prepared for these kinds of issues which are largely out of your control.

“Overall, business is very good for us in the USA, The American public has taken to our products very well and we have a brilliant relationship with our customers in the USA.

“We see the USA as a key market for our range of products and we are constantly evolving our sales and marketing processes to generate more sales right across the USA.

“We’re really pleased we’ve got Alexander Knight & Co as our accountants and having the right professional advisers on board makes a huge difference to our success.”

Murray Patt, founder of Alexander Knight & Co, added:

There is huge demand for the GaraDry range of garage seals in the USA and we are delighted to be their accountants and support them in their growth journey in the USA.

“As part of our membership of MGI, the global accounting network, we have first class contacts across the USA and can make introductions to the right people who can assist on the ground if you want to export to the States.”


We support ‘Cinderella’ at Sale Waterside in Winter 2023

Alexander Knight & Co is proud to support Junior Stage 80’s production at Sale Waterside in November. This year’s magical offering is the incredible Rodgers & Hammerstein musical production of  Cinderella. It’s a brilliant opportunity to immerse yourself in this timeless story of love and hope.

Tickets are on sale here. 

As part of our tradition of supporting the arts we are delighted to be associated with such an iconic and cherished production.

Alison Spier, head of marketing at Alexander Knight & Co, said:

“We are always pleased to support productions by Junior Stage 80. We wish all of those involved – front of stage and backstage – the best of luck and we are sure that this show will be a huge success.”

Cinderella Sale Waterside November 2023




New ad campaign in Altrincham Today

We are delighted to offer you a look at our latest advertising campaign in Altrincham Today!



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R&D Tax credits…a reminder!

R&D Tax Credits update for entrepreneurs in 2023

Murray Patt, founder of accountants Alexander Knight & Co says changes made by HMRC to the popular ‘R&D Tax Credits’ scheme are a reminder to check if your own business qualifies.

R&D Tax Credits are designed to encourage UK companies to invest in ‘research and development’. Correctly administered they can reduce your tax bill or you can claim payable cash credits as a proportion of your R&D expenditure.

Since the scheme was launched, our team has claimed back thousands of pounds for clients. The successful claims we’ve made on their behalf range from £5,000 to hundreds of thousands of pounds.

In my experience, too many businesses across the UK are missing out on this valuable tax break worth hundreds of millions of pounds.

Shifting criteria

The R&D scheme is part of the Government’s drive to boost innovation. It means that businesses investing in the research and development of new products and processes get a tax deduction on qualifying expenditure, including staff wages, materials, overheads, software and utility bills, as well as the ability to claim cash back from HMRC.

The scheme is under continuous review and significant changes were recently introduced – and there are more changes to come.

The rules and qualifying criteria for the scheme can be complex for inexperienced claimants in terms of identifying what kind of business expenditure actually qualifies. This is particularly true in cases where clients employ or subcontract work overseas.

For example, the Government soon intends to implement a new change whereby only R&D activity being performed in the UK (subject to specific exemptions) will qualify. This will come into effect from 1 April 2024.

A new digital application process became mandatory this summer where project and expenditure details need to be supplied in a specific format as well as a variety of other administrative changes.

The government have helpfully extended the scope of what costs can be claimed as qualifying R&D expenditure and this includes artificial intelligence (AI) an area in which more of our clients are investing and exploring the possibilities.

Do it properly… and professionally!

The key to making a successful claim is to correctly identify what expenditure qualifies, when it was spent and record it accurately for HMRC in the newly updated prescribed manner.

The process can be complex which is why we have a specialist R&D tax credits team managing the claims to a successful conclusion on behalf of our clients. You can read more on the official guidance issued by the Government here.

If you want to understand more about how your business can claim ‘R&D tax credits’ email Murray Patt (murray@alexanderknightaccountants.co.uk) or call me on 0161 980 8788.  

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Growth at Alexander Knight & Co


We are delighted to have bolstered our team of accountants in Hale with the arrival of Cameron and Abi.

Cameron Ellams joins the Accounts & Audit team from Beever & Struthers. Abi Thomson enters the accountancy profession from a teaching background.

Alexander Knight & Co was founded in 2012 and is a member of MGI Worldwide, the global accounting association.

GaraDry wins prestigious award

GaraDry wins prestigious Kings Award for Enterprise

An innovative product design company is celebrating today after scooping a prestigious international business award from King Charles.

His Majesty The King approved the Prime Minister’s recommendation that Lancashire-based GaraDry should receive the King’s Award for Enterprise in the International Trade category this year.

The newly renamed King’s Award for Enterprise celebrates outstanding achievements by UK businesses and is internationally recognised. The 2023 awardees were officially announced today, marking Queen Elizabeth II’s birthday.

Ashley Smith43, who founded the company in 2009, has now received an invitation from His Majesty the King to visit Buckingham Palace later this year to celebrate his company’s achievement.

Based in Ormskirk, Lancashire, GaraDry designs, manufactures, and sells the world’s largest range of threshold seals for residential garage doors and commercial doors. You can order these brilliant products directly from their brilliant website which stocks the a huge range of garage door seals.

The innovative GaraDry garage door seals and flood barrier kits are designed to form a watertight seal between a garage door and the floor. The threshold seal also prevents leaves, dust and debris from being blown under to ensure a clean and dry garage all year round. The garage door threshold seals also act as a defence against rodents, insects and reptiles.

The 43-year-old, who has a degree in Industrial Design from the University of Central Lancashire,  launched his first online business in 2005 selling garage door spare parts which still trades today.

This experience saw him dealing with customers frustrated with the limited options available for them to prevent water entering their garage. This led to him spotting a gap in the market to create his unique product range that prevents rainwater and debris seeping under garage doors and into commercial warehouses.

Innovative design for garage door threshold 

Innovations included adding safety features, such as yellow extruded lines on all its products, multiple sizing options and using robust environmentally friendly materials. The firm also supplies its own brand adhesive developed specifically for the product range. GaraDry also introduced the first flood barriers for garages that can be driven over. All the products are protected by design registrations.

Growing company 

The company is actively recruiting, employs 11 people, and has grown its sales dramatically in the last three years. Overseas sales now account for 33% of its UK business. It now exports its range of products to more than 40 countries including most European countries and as far away as Australia.  

GaraDry opened a subsidiary in the USA in 2017 (GaraDry LLC), to handle strong interest from Americans in the products and launched a fulfilment centre in Tennessee to ship transatlantic orders quickly. A warehouse was also set up in Germany in 2022 to fulfil all EU orders and smooth the challenges of Brexit.

Ashley Smith, managing director of GaraDry, said:

“I’m delighted and humbled for our company to receive this accolade. It means the world to our team and receiving this acknowledgement from the King only encourages us even further to grow our business and continue designing innovative products manufactured in Great Britain.

“As well as people wanting to protect the contents of their garage, businesses see the benefit in keeping the products they store in industrial units clean and dry all year round and this B2B market has opened up opportunities for us all over the world. Safety is another driver for them because water on a warehouse floor is a slip hazard.  Our products also protect expensive machinery which is at risk of rusting or cardboard which will get ruined by rain.

 “The fact I started the business with a £1,000 inheritance from my uncle proves that a large amount of funding is not always needed to start a business and to be successful. Drive and determination are often equally, if not more important. I hope this encourages other entrepreneurs to aim high even if they might only have limited resources to start with.

 “I started the business from my mother’s home in Ainsdale and used the shed and garage as my stockroom and my bedroom as my office. I’m thankful to my Mum for supporting me during that early phase.

“We’re all truly humbled by this award and hope it can inspire other people to pursue their business dreams.

“We are excited about the future. We will continue to work hard and expand geographically and create new jobs here in Ormskirk. We also have a new innovative product range which is under development which we hope to bring to market this year.”

Staff loyalty and family values are key to the growth of the business. Christopher Davies, the company’s first member of staff is now the General Manager and has been with the company for 13 years. Ashley’s wife, Helen joined the company in 2011 and is currently the Company Secretary.

Murray Patt, founder of Alexander Knight & Co, added:

“We are all absolutely delighted to see our client acknowledged by The King as a leading business in the field of exporting innovative British-made products all over the world. There is huge demand for the GaraDry range of garage seals and we are delighted to be their accountants and support them in their growth journey as they continue to innovate, open new markets and create new products.” 

See uk.garadry.com


MGI Talent

Some of our colleagues attended the MGI Talent Meeting in Brussels, Belgium.

The Talent Meeting is a unique opportunity to build your network, learn about MGI, listen to and debate professional issues and have fun.

The meeting was held on 31 March 2023 at Crown Plaza Brussels Airport Hotel, Belgium.