We’re delighted to launch a new blog series – ‘Member Spotlight’ where we get to know Founders Hub members through a monthly Q&A. This month we’re welcoming Graham Davies from Addition Finance. Graham tells us about the work he does on behalf of SMEs, their innovative app and the best piece of advice he’s been given.
Tell us about yourself and your company. Describe your lightbulb moment at which point you knew your venture might actually become a success.
Before launching Addition, I worked in financial services for 15 years across a range of industries and roles. Over time, it became obvious to me that many accounting and financial practices were outdated and cumbersome. Not only that, there was a definite lack of quality help available for smaller businesses. I founded Addition in 2017 because I wanted to give SMEs the quality of service that they deserve and need to thrive. My client base quickly grew through references alone. Seeing how popular our kind of services were made me confident that we were on the right track.
What are you most passionate about in business? How do you continue to challenge yourself?
We pride ourselves on two things at Addition: keeping things simple, and giving people what they really need. It’s about innovating and thinking outside the box of standard small business finance. One of the ways we’re doing that is through our Addition app. Our clients will be able to access real-time insights unique to their business, so the numbers make sense. They can see their bestsellers of the week or month, keep an eye on their tax bill, upload receipts and more. Taking on this project has been a huge challenge for us – but also very rewarding.
What or who inspired you to establish your company?
My inspiration came from noticing a disparity in financial service quality for SMEs – as opposed to big businesses. They seemed to consistently get the raw end of the deal, with overpriced fees and poor customer service. Many aspects of their bookkeeping were archaic (think shoeboxes full of receipts), laborious and DIY. Most importantly, small and medium businesses were not being given access to in-depth financial insights, whereas larger corporations were. I started Addition to change that, and today we support over 180 clients.
What was the best advice anyone ever gave you, and did you follow it?
Everything in the world we live in was created by someone. Try not to view the world as permanent as it can become a constraint. Remove the constraints and create the life you want. I found this advice very powerful and apply it to business always. Just because something is done a certain way, doesn’t mean it has to be so in future.
Who do you most admire and why?
Bill Gates. At the beginning of his journey, the world was very different. The result of his work has fundamentally changed the world. The admirable thing about him is the fact that at the time, setting up a company like Microsoft required so much drive and resilience. Not giving up in those situations is very difficult. He also continues to do things to have a positive impact on the world, and is driven by impact. I would certainly enjoy dinner with him!
Thanks so much to Graham at Addition Finance for this insightful look into how they’re doing things differently and about their innovative work. If you’d like to feature in a future Member Spotlight, let us know in the Founders Hub Slack!