They say, to have a smart wife is a luxury, but to have a smart accountant is a necessity. Bearing testimony to this proverb, Alok Patnia founded Taxmantra.com, an online platform that aims to understand and address the pain points of individuals, businesses, companies and new start-ups by providing timely and quality tax solutions in the most hassle free manner.
In conversation with Abhilasha Dafria for YourStory.in, Alok, a qualified Chartered Accountant and a commerce bachelor from St. Xavier’s College, tells us more about how Taxmantra.com lives by the motto of “Experience Excellence” and “Stay Hassle Free”!
Please introduce Taxmantra.com to our readers.
Taxmantra.com provides a one stop solution platform to individuals, Startups and businesses to resolve their pain points with its unique and hassle-free services such as tax return filing, Company/ LLP creation, accounting, company law compliances and such other day to day business maintenance services.
So how did you come up with this idea of starting a venture in the taxation space?
I noted something very interesting during my stint with the big 4 accounting firms in Bangalore, that even though clients were locally based, we hardly met them face-to-face. Client delivery used to happen via exchange of mails, with post discussions either through video conferencing or con-calls.
Startups, new businesses, SMEs or for that matter even individuals have to still take time out from their work to visit a local consultant, as it is a common knowledge that not all can afford to hire big accounting firms.
Thus, it thrilled me to start a service wherein, we can address the pain points of individuals, startups, by using internet as an enabler to reach clients irrespective of their locations with excellent service at the most affordable price
Could you tell us in detail about the services you offer?
Taxmantra.com provides complete taxation, accounting & financial solutions to individuals and businesses. The sole objective of Taxmantra.com is to bring full gamut of accounting, taxation and financial service on a single platform under three broad service heads;
(i) Individual Taxation Services, which includes services like Online return filing services, Tax planning and save taxes service, Tax refunds services, ITR Rectification Assistance in allotment/ Correction/ Surrender of PAN number/ Issuance of Digital signature certificates and all other services related to individual taxation, covering both Salaried and Non-Salaried Individuals.
(ii) Business Incorporation or Startup Services includes services such as creation of private limited company, creation of Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs), Start-Up Counseling and all other services related to business incorporation like local registrations.
(iii) Business maintenance Services includes services such as accounting, auditing assistance, Taxation, Company Law (ROC), Service tax and all other services related to business maintenance covering both Corporate and Non Corporate Entity.
How many clients have you had so far?
Without stating the actual number for obvious reasons, we can say that we are able to engage thousands of salaried & non - salaried individuals in filing their tax returns and also helping them in solving their tax issues. We are also assisting a good number of new businesses, startups, SMEs and some major businesses in handling issues relating to taxation, accounting, auditing, company law, service and such other issues.
What is your clientele like? Could you share some demographics and tell us about your tie-ups if any?We have clientele based from metro cities, from B tier cities in India and also NRI clients from outside India. Our clientele includes Individuals (salaried and non-salaried), Startups, Businesses, Corporate and other businesses. We have associate tie-ups in Bangalore and Hyderabad and wish to extend our presence to other cities as well.
What is the market-size you are trying to capture?
With internet technology taking the centre stage, the government has made company law compliances including incorporation of company, LLP, service tax returns, sales tax, vat, TDS Compliances, to name some, fully automated now and is taking added effort to make these more seamless and hassle free. Also, to give you some data for Financial Year 2010-11, more than 15 million tax payers have preferred to file their returns through online medium.
There is increased eagerness amongst Entrepreneurs, Start-Ups and other corporate and Non-Corporate businesses to prefer online medium for availing services due to paucity of time and hassle of visiting local consultants. Thus, we think that there is a huge market for us to cater to, though initially there may be some bottlenecks.
How many people visit your site every day? Tell us about the traction on your site.
We have a targeted visitor of around 6K to 8K on a daily average from all virtually all parts of India and also non-resident Indians from abroad.
Are there other players in the market doing similar things? What is your USP?
Without naming any one in particular, we know that there are number of online service providers in this segment, with few of them providing only online tax filing for salaried individuals and then there are few engaged in rendering business incorporation services or accounting services and such others.
But, what is so unique about Taxmantra.com is that, it brings all, salaried individuals, non-salaried individuals, Startups, businesses, SMEs on a single platform, wherein they can avail different services without getting into hassle of visiting different consultants for different set of services.
How does the revenue model work?
Our revenue model is very like any other service industry; that is, to provide excellent service fully customized to the needs of our client’s at most affordable price. For us client satisfaction is top most priority, and we believe that client retention is as important as new client acquisition.
Since when are you operational? Where are you based?
We are operational from first quarter of 2011. We have a fully functional integrated client delivery office in Kolkata and associate tie-ups in Bangalore, Hyderabad and Dhanbad.