As accountancy firms become ever more inventive in offering new services to clients, Horwath Clark Whitehill’s Hartlepool office has broken ahead of the pack by taking on an audit senior with a skill rare in accountancy – international standard karate. Imran Maqbool, 33, who has joined from Middlesbrough firm A M Chuhan, is a black belt third dan and has represented the UK and Pakistan in tournaments from Malaysia to Algeria. He was in action a fortnight ago at the English championships in Birmingham, where he went out 5-0 in a bout with a former fellow member of the England team.
Imran says although karate is about fighting, it is far safer than many other sports. ‘Normally, you come home with your own nose, hands and feet,’ he says. ‘I certainly would not want to play rugby.’ He took up the sport at 16 and represented England at under-21 level before going on to fight for Pakistan as an adult. He now trains three times a week, a schedule he says he should be able to keep to even with his new responsibilities.
Married with a 13-month-old daughter, Imran qualified with ACCA in 1995 and holds a BA honours in accountancy and finance. He is a visiting lecturer at Middlesbrough college, where he teaches on the AAT course. Peter Olsen, partner at Horwath Clark Whitehill, said: ‘Imran is a valuable addition to our team. His expertise will complement our existing set-up and ensure our clients receive the quality of service they expect from us.
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