Business advisory firm Dow Schofield Watts has recruited a senior manager from KPMG’s Manchester office to head a new VAT services division.

It is the latest stage of DSW’s growth strategy as the outfit looks to add to its range of services, which include corporate finance, management and financial due diligence, business broking and forensic expertise.

It also has a private equity arm, which has so far raised £4.5m from individuals and has invested about 60 per cent of the proceeds.

Keith Miller, who has more than 20 years’ experience in the field, will lead DSW’s VAT services arm across the north west and north east.

He spent eight years at KPMG, where he helped build and lead its northern mergers and acquisitions VAT practice. Before that he worked at Deloitte and HM Revenue and Customs.

The married father-of-two, who in his spare time is a drummer in The Modern World, a Mod tribute band, advises on VAT and other indirect taxes such as customs duty and insurance premium tax.

James Dow, who founded DSW with Jon Schofield and Mark Watts in 2002, said: “The addition of VAT services will enable us to not only provide valuable support to our clients in this complex area of tax but also to help them identify new opportunities that exist to improve their VAT position.

“Keith is also experienced in providing specialist VAT services to private equity clients and helping high net worth individuals manage the impact of VAT and customs duty on luxury asset ownership.”

DSW, which is based at Daresbury, near Warrington, said earlier this year it was looking to  recruit people from Big Four accountancy firms to add tax, corporate recovery, interim management and actuarial capabilities.

It has adopted a franchise model to add services as it looks to grow annual fee income from over £5m.

The practice, which has an office in Leeds, is also eyeing office openings in Birmingham and Bristol as part of its expansion strategy.

Mr Miller said: “I am very excited at the prospect of joining the DSW team. I had always thought there was an opportunity for the provision of niche VAT services in the corporate finance sector, so had no hesitation in agreeing to join James and his colleagues to help develop their business even further.”