We’re delighted to be celebrating our 90th year in business having been formed way back in 1928 by Mr James Sibbald. As well as looking back on our proud history, this post also looks forward to the various technological developments which will revolutionize our practice in the years to come.
James Sibbald, Forsyth and Farnsworth
Mr Sibbald was shortly after joined by Mr Forsyth and Mr Farnsworth, and became known as “James Sibbald, Forsyth and Farnsworth” (originality not really being one of the greatest qualities of accountants back in those days). Following a number of changes in the partnership which saw Mr Farnsworth and Mr Forsyth’s son’s also become partners, we eventually became known as Sibbalds and moved from our offices in St Mary’s Gate where we had been based for most of our history to Oakhurst House on Ashbourne Road where are today.
Other well-known businesses also formed in 1928 and sharing their anniversary with us are Lubrizol, Nissan Group, and Motorola. Whilst we haven’t quite achieved the global domination of these big brands, we are really proud to have been able to support many businesses in our home town to achieve national and international success.
A lot has changed since those early days, and in particular, the introduction of computers has been probably the most revolutionary. Before we had computers, the accounts produced had to be typed up using a typewriter! And all of the “working papers” were maintained in “audit bundles” tied with pink ribbon., and added up by hand until the introduction of the calculator in the late ‘70s.
The photo above shows a ledger from one our longest established clients, which dates back to 1874, even before our founder James Sibbald was born. They were one of his first clients – and we are proud to say that we still act for them today. That may be because of the very generous fee arrangement Mr Sibbald and his colleagues had with them – their fees remained unchanged (6 Guineas – that’s 6 pounds and 6 shillings) from 1928 to 1972!
Paperless and Cloud Accounting
Our focus today is on becoming truly “paperless”, having been one of the first firms in the East Midlands to embrace the concept and we have been slowly reducing the amount of paper we use for over a decade. By the end of 2018, we will have eliminated over 95% of the paper, printing and postage previously used which will go a long way to helping the environment and make us more efficient.
With the rapid development of cloud accounting solutions, the use of technology within the business is going through a revolution – and we are proud to be at the forefront of this change as we have been for nearly a century.
Moving forward together
Whilst technology may have changed a lot over the past 90 years, one thing that has remained constant is our commitment to provide the best service and advice we can to the people and businesses of Derby, Derbyshire and the surrounding area.
We’ve welcomed many faces over the years – as clients, as strategic partners, and as team members – and without the support of all of these, we would not have achieved the success we have over the past 90 years and we thank you all for everything you have done and continue to do to make us the firm we are today.