Fairway Furniture

The timeless tale of Fairway Furniture and Condy Mathias – A three-decade journey of trust and triumph across the Southwest

Fairway Furniture was founded in 1856 by John Harding, and is a family-run business, now in its sixth generation. Fairway Furniture offers quality furniture, beds and carpets, and Harding’s legacy now sees the family business operating four stores and a distribution centre across the southwest of England.

Fairway Furniture’s expansion of stores came during the 1980s, and it was at this time that they employed Condy Mathias as auditors. A partnership that is now over three decades old has blossomed, and to this day Condy Mathias is providing an excellent service to Fairway Furniture, something current CFO Michael Baron can attest to:

“Fairly recently we’ve changed our EPOS and accounting systems, and they’ve really helped with that,” says Michael, who joined Fairway Furniture in 2017. “The software provider for our main computing system hadn’t developed the system in the way that was expected in terms of integrating with the accounting system. Condy Mathias supported me in identifying the quite substantial issues we were facing, and we worked together to resolve them.”

“One of the great things about Condy Mathias”, Michael continued, “is that it is very much a partnership. I’ve worked with some auditors in the past where it can feel like they are trying to trip you up and it is more like a test, but that’s not the feeling you get with Condy Mathias, they really do support you.”

Problem-solving isn’t the only reason Condy Mathias gets praise from the Fairway Furniture CFO, who praised the accessibility of the accountancy firm.

“I feel like I can pick up the phone at any time and call them (and I do!)” says Michael. “They are always on the end of the line and happy to help”.

A thirty-year business relationship clearly has major strengths, and for Michael, a key part of this is down to the personal and friendly service that Condy Mathias provides.

“Speaking as a finance professional who has experienced other accountants in the local vicinity, they really do care and want to support you,” says Michael. “They are as invested as you are in wanting the company to succeed. I think that is the main difference.”

Condy Mathias also aids Fairway Furniture with reconciling investments, something Michael is appreciative of:

“When I first joined, Condy Mathias did almost 100 per cent of the investment work for the company,” says Michael. “In the last six years, it has transitioned to me doing about 90 per cent of the investment work which is down to them training me. It has meant we haven’t had to spend as much money, which was something Condy Mathias was happy to do. It is not always about the money with them; they don’t bill you for every hour like some accounting firms do. It just reiterates how approachable they are.”

With such a solid history built between Fairway Furniture and Condy Mathias, Michael envisions another thirty years of success.

“One of the current Partners at Condy Mathias was a Junior Partner here and worked on our accounts and one of the Partners before him also worked here as a Junior Partner, so there’s a long relationship between the two companies.”