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Smart Tax Breaks Down Barriers to Business Ownership

While many businesses are buckling down due to the rocky economic climate, Smart Tax, a newly launched tax preparation franchise, is offering two new programs to assist driven entrepreneurs become business owners and grow: in-house financing and free conversions for the Smart Tax brand to qualifying business owners. Smart Tax has led the industry in innovative approaches to growth and has tripled from 10 locations at the start of the 2010 tax season to 29 franchise locations operating in 2011. With 45 territories already sold throughout New York, New Jersey and down the eastern seaboard, Smart Tax is counting on these initiatives to keep its growth rate high and steady.

“I have found that there is no shortage of entrepreneurial-minded individuals despite the recession,” said Smart Tax CEO and founder Nick Rizzi. “We’re working to help those individuals break into the industry or bolster their existing companies with the strength of a franchised system.”

The in-house financing program allows any existing franchisee to finance the franchise fee and up to $20,000 of build out costs through Smart Tax via an interest-free loan. In an economy in which many entrepreneurs are struggling to get small business loans or forced to make down payments as high as 30 percent of a loans total value, this move will greatly facilitate entrepreneurs seeking to expand their business.

“In-house financing is something we’ve been planning for a long time,” said Rizzi. “If someone has proven that they’re serious about the business and has what it takes to be successful, we want to remove any barriers that may prevent them from taking their business to the next level.”

Many of Smart Tax’s existing franchisees were able to take advantage of this initiative and open a second location for 2011 tax season, when they would otherwise have been unable to secure the financing for this continued growth. New franchisees can also receive up to $10,000 in financing towards their franchise fee.

Smart Tax’s other initiative allows independent tax preparation business owners who file at least 250 returns a year to completely waive the franchise fee and convert directly to a Smart Tax franchise. Conversions are a growing trend in the franchising industry and allow entrepreneurs who may be struggling to grow their business to take advantage of an established brand name, national marketing programs and the support of a proven infrastructure. Additional territories are also available with no franchise fee based on the number of returns a service files yearly.

“There are many business owners who have spent years developing their business and building personal relationships with their clients but end up hitting a plateau due to any number of factors,” said Joseph Fontana, Smart Tax’s Vice President of Franchising, who has assisted two of Smart Tax’s new franchisees convert their existing business into Smart Tax. “We’re offering those entrepreneurs the opportunity to take their business to the next level under the Smart Tax brand name.”

The barrier-breaking initiatives are two of the latest innovations from a brand already on the cutting edge of the tax preparation industry. Smart Tax also offers a variety of highly-flexible build outs, allowing entrepreneurs the possibility of opening a location in downtown spaces, strip malls and even kiosks in wholesale retailers.

“We’re always looking for new ways to help entrepreneurs who are passionate about our industry in addition to offering the highest quality service to our clients,” said Rizzi. “With these initiatives, we’re looking forward to another strong year of tremendous growth.”