Helping BMC Build a Sustainable and Profitable Future Through R&D Tax Credits

Published 11 December 2020

Before contacting Recoup, Bell Munro Consulting (BMC) was one of the many engineering businesses leaving millions on the table in unclaimed R&D tax reliefs. Part of this was because Chris Munro, Managing Director of BMC, had been burned by a bad experience in the past with an R&D tax firm.

Learn how we restored Chris’ confidence in the R&D tax relief scheme by helping his engineering company put in a seamless and successful claim.

Who is Bell Munro Consulting?

A civil and structural engineering consultancy, BMC was established in Manchester in 2004 by Chris Munro.

The consultancy has grown from strength-to-strength over the last sixteen years, expanding across the UK to become an industry leader. Success has been propelled by its fantastic team of highly-experienced and qualified structural engineers.

BMC prides itself on the excellent quality of its work, designing structures that work commercially, socially and environmentally. It strives to build structures that are efficient and elegant while also focusing on sustainability.


First-time claimers

Like a lot of the business owners that contact us, Chris had never attempted to move forward with a claim before as many are unsure of R&D tax relief claims for those within the engineering sector. There were a few reasons for this, as Chris explains:

“We had contacted another R&D tax specialist who visited our office in Newcastle. But we felt that they were dragging their heels, which made us think: it’s too difficult and not worth our time.”

“Another big concern was dealing with HMRC. I was worried that, after we claimed the money back, HMRC could investigate us and potentially find something that compromised the eligibility of our claim. I didn’t want to have to deal with that kind of stress.”

It wasn’t until a friend connected Chris to Recoup did he consider trying again.


A long list of qualifying points

It was Luke Averill, MD of Recoup, who took on Chris’ case at BMC. “Right off the bat, I felt like I could trust him,” explains Chris. “He answered all my questions about R&D tax with confidence and clarity, easing my concerns around dealing with HMRC.”

Luke also helped to draw out the qualifying activities BMC frequently undertakes, highlighting the powerful impact R&D tax credits could have on Chris’ business.

For example, BMC invests a lot of time and money into overcoming technical challenges and uncertainties, such as researching different materials to drive building efficiency.

The company is also focused on improving sustainability. Therefore, a lot of research goes into reducing the business’ carbon footprint, from remote working solutions to more sustainable building practices.

All of these activities likely qualify the business for R&D tax relief for those within engineering, as Luke explained. Read our blog to discover more about qualifying points for construction and property businesses.

Moreover, Luke revealed how the costs associated with these R&D activities, such as staff costs and utility bills, would be accounted for in the claim. If Chris had done the claim independently, he may have missed out on reimbursement for these costs.


“Seamless support”

“Recoup made the process incredibly easy,” explains Chris. “They put us in touch with one of their chartered tax advisors and told us exactly what we’d need for the call – information that was all to hand. We had no issues gathering what was necessary, and the tax advisor was efficient and thorough.”

“After the call, Recoup gave us a timescale, and everything happened within that time frame. There was no need to chase them up because they always hit the deadlines and kept us fully informed.”

“Overall, the process was fast and hassle-free. Luke did exactly what he said he would do. He made it unbelievably easy.”


Funds in a month

Chris contacted Recoup in November. Three weeks later, the claim was put through successfully. “It was much faster than I expected,” says Chris. “I thought it would take months. It’s no time at all, really.”

Part of the claim has already landed in the form of a cheque, only five weeks since the start of the process!

The average R&D claim takes around six to eight weeks. However, since the government is trying to get as much money back into businesses as possible due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we’ve seen payments being made between two and four weeks – as in BMC’s case.


Looking towards the future

“There’s no question – we’re definitely going to work with Recoup again,” says Chris. “In fact. We’re already set to claim again early next year.”

Like many of the businesses we’ve helped, BMC plans to reinvest the R&D tax credits back into the business, not just as a way to improve cash flow but to add to its services, increasing value.

Inspired by BMC’s story? If you think it’s time to get the ball rolling with your R&D tax relief claim, specifically if you’re in engineering, get in touch with us today. You can also use our free R&D eligibility checker to find out if your business qualifies for R&D tax claims.

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