Dark Horse CPAs, an accounting and tax firm serving small businesses and individuals across the US, has created a “first of its kind” business model that “puts the CPA in the driver seat and the traditional CPA firm on notice”.
The Dark Horse Principal Accelerator Program was created for CPAs wanting to build a scalable book of business at a firm that empowers them with the resources to grow, while embracing technology.
Accelerators are put through a training program that acclimates them to the firm’s bot-enabled tech stack, followed by proprietary sales training and one-on-one coaching. Upon completion of training, they will begin to “build their book” by fielding inquiries from potential Dark Horse clients. To facilitate their growth, accelerators have full-time and fractional professional personnel support at their disposal.
This new CPA firm business model includes an active corporate team that “ensures their work is of high quality and strategically focused”. After successful completion of the program, they become an equity principal of the firm.
Chase Birky, Dark Horse co-founder and CEO, said: “Many CPAs at traditional firms are living lives of quiet desperation. Caught up in a system that celebrates and rewards those who’ve exchanged a life of balance for one that makes them a stranger to family and friends, they leave public accounting in droves to salvage what’s left of their best years.
“Others strike out on their own as sole practitioners only to discover a journey more difficult and consuming than they bargained for. And, of course, a few make Partner status. Our Principal Accelerator Program was born out of the belief that there’s a better way to practice public accounting if you’re willing to deconstruct the outdated partnership model that demands the blood, sweat and tears of accountants to enrich those at the top.”
Dark Horse’s first accelerator, John Warner, said that he found that the Principal Accelerator Program “changed his career trajectory”.
He said: “I was at a point in my career when I knew I needed to shake things up, so I briefly went down the road of creating my own CPA firm. I quickly discovered that endeavor would incur both a financial and personal cost.
“By happenstance, I came across co-founders Chase Birky and Max Fritz, who were building a platform for CPA practitioners. I decided that it was a better way to build my future than going it alone.”
He added: “The blend of being part of something bigger while retaining the autonomy needed to create a lifestyle that works for my family and myself has been life-changing. And the technology, training, marketing, staffing, exclusive revenue streams and collaboration with other CPAs have allowed me to build a half-million-dollar book of business in under two years.”