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Startup shows accountants the love (and cunningly generates leads)

Kiwi startup Common Ledger, which is out to standardise data for accountants and bookkeepers, has come up with a cunning way to let people know how much they value their accountant and add to its contact base.

The one year old venture stemmed from co-founder Drew Broadley’s previous efforts with Paperkut, which brought different types of point of sale data into a single format. Common Ledger seeks to bring the same concept to accounting with a web platform to bring different types of receipts and data to a common ledger in accounting systems.

Love Thy Accountant invites people to nominate an accountant they appreciate and give themselves and said accountant a chance to win prizes like a Pebble Smartwatch, a GoPro HD Hero3 or an Amazon Gift Card.

Nominators supply their details and that of their accountant, then choose to honour the accountant with a virtual handshake, high five, hug, fist bump, double guns or approving nod.

“The story behind Love Thy Accountant is really, accountants just aren’t valued in the the way they want to be,” says Broadley. “When you see them, they’re generally like dentists, telling you off about something you’ve done wrong.

“The reality is, learning to love your accountant makes your business better. They don’t just crunch numbers and talk in dollars and negatives.”

When asked if it was primarily a cunning lead generation tool, Broadley said it was “made to show the love, (cough)”, but added around 1000 accountants had had loved shared with them.

The co-founders of the Wellington-based company are Vince Warnock, who handles marketing, and strategy lead Brendan Wu. They’re joined by operations staffer Carlos Chambers, and technical personnel Patrick Hindmarsh and Mark Spadafora.

The venture is one of 10 participating in this year’s Lightning Lab accelerator and is currently raising capital. 

Amanda Sachtleben is an Auckland writer and social media type, who's also Idealog's former tech editor and business journalist.

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