CPA Profile
Yolanda Kelly
CPA Profile
Yolanda Kelly
Portrait headshot photograph of Yolanda Kelly smiling

Title: Director of Client Services
Company: Cafico International
Qualifications: CPA

Why did you decide to start out in a career in accountancy?
I didn’t want to be an astronaut or world-famous super star actor when I grew up, I really wanted to be stockbroker. I thought it was the most exciting job a person could have. I had a natural orientation towards business, accounting and finance related subjects and I never considered a career in any other sphere. After completing a BSc in Finance in UCC, I went travelling for a few years and then settled in Ennis, Co. Clare, a really great town, despite the limited opportunities for apprentice stockbrokers at the time. I decided the next best thing available to me was to pursue a professional accounting qualification which would give me an opportunity to work at a career doing something that I enjoyed.
Why did you choose CPA Ireland as your qualification route?
CPA was the professional body that I was most familiar with, and it has very strong recognition internationally.

It was also a time before lectures were available online and I could walk to the CPA lectures that were held in the local area. That was helpful as I didn’t have a car!

Please provide a brief history of your career.
I trained initially with Slattery and Partners in Ennis, upon completing my final CPA exams, I moved to a corporate administration services provider based in Shannon. I joined initially as a junior accountant and progressed to senior client manager during the 8 years I spent there.

I found that I loved the variety that comes with working in corporate administration services, it is fast paced and demanding in a constant learning environment, every client has unique needs and challenges, and this diversity means that no two days are ever the same.

In 2012, I co-founded Cafico International with my colleague Rodney O’Rourke, where I am currently the Director of Client Services. Cafico International is a corporate services provider, head-quartered in Ireland, which provides management, administration, financial reporting and compliance services to a diverse range of corporate clients across multiple jurisdictions.

What one word describes what your CPA qualification has given you?
What has been your biggest career achievement?
Being part of the growth journey of Cafico International, working with many great colleagues over the years to build a successful organisation with a reputation for very high-quality client service delivery.

Cafico International continues to grow and today employs 60 people with offices in Dublin, Ennis, London and Luxembourg.

I am very proud of the growth of the company to date, and I have been privileged to work with so many talented and dedicated people on this journey.

I was also delighted that we established our second Irish location in Ennis. I love Co. Clare, it’s a fantastic place to live and work. Today 50% of our Irish based team is attached to the Ennis office, with plans for continued growth.

What or who inspires you most in business?
People who work hard and lead by example. Good problem solvers. People who ask questions and want to keep learning.
What advice would you give to those recently qualified or currently studying for their CPA qualification?
A CPA qualification will open doors to career opportunities but don’t stop there, challenge yourself, be ambitious, never stop looking to learn. So much of people’s time is invested in their working lives, keep trying until you find something that you enjoy doing, that is most important.
How do you unwind?
Spending time with family and friends, family holidays, walking, reading and good movies.
What traits do you admire in others?
Honesty, Generosity, Determination, Inquisitiveness.