Craig Mathieson, hailed as Scotland’s greatest living explorer by the Royal Scottish Geographical Society on account of his many polar expeditions, is facing a new adventure after leaving Johnston Carmichael to set up a new VAT department at mid-tier firm French Duncan.
After seven years with Johnston Carmichael - one of the fastest growing firms north of the border - Mathieson is moving to the a smaller firm where he will be in charge of his own indirect tax department, dealing with VAT, Customs duties, Excise duties, climate change levy, landfill tax, aggregates levy and the like.
“Joining French Duncan represents a fantastic opportunity,” says Mathieson, who admits to doing his own due diligence on the firm over several months. “If you get offered a partnership in a good accountancy firm with an excellent background and, important for me, a good reputation with HMRC, it presents an ideal opportunity in which to progress. That’s why, when, following some months of discussion, the offer was made, it was accepted by return.”
“A big attraction for me was the blank canvas; the fact that French Duncan did not have an existing VAT department, which enabled us to set everything up properly from scratch. I like to do things by the book, and this opportunity to come in and start an indirect tax practice from scratch very much appealed to me.”
But what will happen to Mathieson’s polar explorations?
“I am going back to the Arctic in May and having talks with the Greenlandic Government on their youth education issues and problems, and about setting up a programme that involves young Inuits and young Scots,” he says.
“It will be a good marketing exercise for us,” he adds with a polar explorer’s shrewdness.