Loyalty Brands, ATAX, and Latino Tax Professionals (LTP) are joining forces in a mega-franchise move poised to revolutionize the nation's taxpayer experience and franchising– just in time for the 2020 tax season.
The unprecedented merger of Loyalty Brands and ATAX creates a leveraged opportunity to share resources, collaborate, and ultimately streamline the companies under one franchise roof. The Loyalty Brands franchise umbrella includes ATAX, Loyalty Networking, Loyalty Trade Exchange, First Choice Business Broker, and a soon-to-be-announced small business accounting brand, as well as an executive recruiting firm
Serial entrepreneur John Hewitt, who founded Virginia Beach, Virginia-based Loyalty Brands in 2018, says the new franchise umbrella creates synergistic partnerships for all franchisees. This is a trend in franchising, multiple brands under a parent company but Loyalty brands is taking the trend to the next level of efficiency.
“Our growing list of brands provides the opportunity for franchisees to participate in as many of the concepts as they chose. With significant incentives to do so” according to Hewitt, CEO of Loyalty Brands.
Hewitt is starting his third venture into the franchising world, having founded two of the Top 100 franchise chains in the U.S. and one of the Top 100 in Canada. He has mentored over 5000 franchisees throughout his 50 year-career.
“We have struck on a concept layered in complementary businesses that is an exciting departure from the traditional franchise model,” says Hewitt. “Within our system, we can provide support from brand to brand in business operations, co-marketing, and other managed services. In addition, our offering allows franchisees to develop a portfolio of our brands to increase revenue and expand services to many demographic groups and businesses.”
LTP founder and CEO Carlos C. Lopez says aligning with national franchisor ATAX brings value to both independent operators and those looking to enter the space.
“Many independent tax offices struggle to scale as they lack key internal processes, marketing support, and coaching,” Lopez. “We see ATAX as the leader in delivering turnkey solutions for our members.”
Lopez founded LTP in 2009 to serve Spanish speaking tax preparers who were having issues with the IRS and the California Franchise Tax Board. When the IRS' Registered Tax Return Preparer (RTRP) program launched in 2010, LTP countered by enhancing its mission to include a tax training program uniquely designed to focus on Spanish speaking tax professionals and the management of their tax businesses. LTP's educational focus includes immigration, taxes, visas, bookkeeping, and business growth continuing education.
The addition of Latino Tax Professionals as the training and education team has created a preferred partnership between Loyalty Brands, and more specifically, the ATAX brand. ATAX is endorsed by LTP as the preferred Latino tax and business services franchise opportunity for the tax preparation community. Latino Tax Professionals Is now the preferred education and tax training provider for ATAX.
The cross-marketing opportunity allows the two entities to provide the best and most thorough tax training and on-going education available in the tax industry. Preparers can obtain the designation of Annual Filing Season Program. This designation, while not yet required by the IRS, is a valuable distinction to hold and gives customers peace of mind when having their taxes prepared by an ATAX preparer.
“We have worked with Latino Tax Pro for many years,” notes Rafael Alvarez, CEO of ATAX. “This partnership signifies a new level of trust and respect that is unparalleled in our industry.”
ATAX will offer tax classes, powered by LTP, in their locations throughout the U.S., along with free online courses. Alvarez will also teach a class for Enrolled Agents (EA) to allow people to expand their tax knowledge and gain certain privileges with the IRS currently not available to preparers who are not EAs.
Arthur Garcia, president of ATAX, is excited about this partnership.
“Tax education and continuing education is critical to the success of a tax preparation company as clients are looking for value-added services,” Garcia notes. “The Latino Tax Pro education platform allows for many levels of training and tax updates that can't be duplicated. We have a variety of learning options for anyone who wants to learn more about income tax and bookkeeping or start a career as a tax preparer or franchise owner.”
ATAX, founded by Alvarez in 1986 with $200, two computers and a fax machine, is one of the largest tax preparation providers on the East Coast. The Loyalty Brands, portfolio of companies is an ideal platform to offer turnkey solutions to entrepreneurs looking for guidance, experience, and most of all, leadership.
“The company sees the opportunity to create a place where our customers can get access to a number of services by trusted advisors, and in the language, they feel comfortable speaking,” says Alvarez.