PKF Sydney and GHO partner for start-up advisory offering

09 February 2022 2 min. read
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Following the success of supporting entertainment start-up Grub Lab, PKF’s Sydney & Newcastle office has teamed up with creative agency GHO to launch a new start-up-focused venture.

The Sydney & Newcastle member of international accounting and advisory network PKF has launched a joint venture with brand and marketing agency GHO aimed at supporting Australian start-ups.

Combining business, finance and creative expertise, the new full service offering seeks to address what the venture partners perceive as flaws in the traditional approach to market.

PKF Sydney and GHO partner for start-up advisory offering

“We have been supporting start-ups for some time, but this venture with GHO enables us to offer a more holistic offering and reduce the risk for the start-ups we back as they go to market and scale,” said PKF Sydney & Newcastle Managing Director Steve Meyn, who was appointed as PKF Australia chairman in March of last year alongside the elevation of Peter Cannan to CEO.

According to PKF and GHO, the path to market has remained challenging for start-ups despite a large increase over recent years in available professional services. The traditional approach of working with multiple partners, they say, often means that new businesses receive conflicting advice. Additionally, such an approach can involve significant cash outlays or a dilution of equity.

Meyn noted the early success of their new model in having helped augmented reality kids entertainment platform Grub Lab to secure $1.2 million in new funding last year, with the start-up since launching collaborations with the NRL and AFL. “We’ve worked together for three years now, and I couldn’t be more delighted with the outcome,” commented Grub Lab CEO Mick Carr CEO.

“The problem that start-ups like us face is not a lack of advice from business, finance and creative industries. It’s being able to access this breadth of experience without signing over a lot of equity or much-needed cash to a long list of partners. PKF and GHO bring these skills together and provide strategic processes that are designed to ensure we can leverage this mix alongside our own talents.”

Based in Sydney, PKF’s venture partner GHO is a creative digital agency established in 2000 by Peter Hosking, with the Commonwealth Bank, Allianz, Hitashi and NSW government featuring among an impressive roll-call of clients. The company provides a wide range of services across design, strategy and marketing, including through agile collaborative five-day design sprints.

“Innovation and creativity are core to what we do, and are a critical requirement of start-ups, but we’ve long believed there is an opportunity to change the model for supporting these businesses.” said GHO Strategy Partner James Legge. “By developing our design thinking offering and service-for-equity commercial models, together with PKF we’re in a position to help deliver a clearer path to profit and growth.”