Why quantitative tax advice
Tax advice is all about numbers, but is mostly provided in words, through lengthy, technical memos. For non-tax professionals, these memos are often difficult to grasp; even for tax professionals, these memos often require concentrated reading. Where there is uncertainty in a tax analysis, advisers often resort to broad and unclear wording. We believe that tax advice can and should as much as possible be quantified. Quantitative tax advice is practical, cuts away irrationality and avoids too much attention for technical details.
Our approach is as follows:
- We want our clients to understand how much tax they will pay in their current position.
- If there is uncertainty on the tax position, we make concise and structured overviews that set out the scenarios that may occur.
- Where helpful, we assign numerical probabilities to those scenarios and avoid qualitative probability statements, such as “it cannot be excluded that…”, “there are good arguments to take a position…”, “there is a considerable chance that…”.
- Per alternative, we present the tax impact and consider the different degrees of uncertainty. This allows for proper weighting of rewards and risks and making well-informed decisions.
Instead of lengthy, technical memos, we provide our advice through overviews; considering the financials of the specific business or transaction. We express tax uncertainty in potential financial impact. This allows you to focus on the important impact points and make sensible decisions, based on quantified comparisons and – where needed – supported by visuals and graphs.
Huygens is a boutique tax advisory firm based in Amsterdam. We provide advice on Dutch corporate tax issues, transfer pricing and valuations to private equity firms, real estate investors, multinationals, start-ups and high-net worth individuals, including family offices.
Our history and mission
Huygens was founded by international tax and transfer pricing advisors with over 70 years of (combined) Tier 1 advisory experience. They started their own firm with a number of clear objectives in mind:
- clear tax advice in numbers, instead of just words in lengthy, technical memos;
- quality instead of quantity when building relationships;
- work in a focused way; and
- be academically engaged.
Huygens’ mission is to facilitate our clients and their advisers in making better decisions about tax and transfer pricing. Pricing the decision alternatives and their risk therefore is the core of our advice.
We strive for operational excellence. We will be transparent about our value proposition, and refrain from assignments where we believe others will contribute more value than we do. We believe in open and transparent relations with our clients and their advisors, also where our consult may be inconvenient. We will be clear on what we deliver and on the fees that we charge.
The origins of our name
Huygens honours the 17th century Dutch scientist, Christiaan Huygens. He made a wide range of spectacular inventions, including the so-called “expected value”. The expected value turned out to be the most important invention for the economic valuation of options and decision alternatives. His work allows to make informed decisions about risk and reward, which we also aim to apply in our tax advisory practice.