Advisory & Regulatory

Advisory

Portman International’s advisory service provides comprehensive corporate, financial and strategic advice to companies with complex business problems. Our depth of knowledge and long experience in the industry can provide clients and service providers with the solutions they need. Our advisory service covers the following areas.

Continuations and Mergers – International business present in a number of countries is constantly challenged by changing markets and regulation. Clients need to constantly be reviewing their corporate and cost structures and the impact that their tax bill is having on their bottom line and competitiveness. All these matters could seriously inhibit companies from growing or even surviving. Continuing or re-domiciling companies to another jurisdiction can often provide the change in environment that is necessary in order to resolve the inefficiencies. Mergers are another tool that can be used in order to achieve economies of scale.

Taxation & VAT – Tax compliance is complex and demanding area for both clients and professionals. Although cross border transactions provide opportunity for tax optimisation, they are also fraught with pitfalls. Tax strategies need certainty. We assist our clients to adopt reliable, compliant and beneficial tax strategies.

Corporate – We advise shareholders and company officers on their rights obligations and duties. Disputes can easily be avoided by clear and unambiguous drafting and fair and resilient provisions in shareholder agreements or company statutes. Also dispute resolution is greatly facilitated if pre-empted by having a mechanism in place that would have been set up having insight into the intentions and expectations of the joint venture partners.

Regulatory

Certain activity such as funds and fund managers, payment institutions or trust companies are regulated and need the approval of the Financial Services Authority. Our specialised team can assist clients with the application process and the meetings necessary with the regulator, all the way to a successful outcome with the granting of the license. The application process normally involves a three year financial business plan that includes a profit & loss account, balance sheet, cash flow and notes on assumptions and other relevant matters.

The operational side of the business plan would need to cover personnel, marketing, compliance, AML procedures, technical data, personal questionnaires on promoters, share holders, directors, top management and other stake holders. Other requirements are a copy of the memorandum & articles and case specific agreements and documents such as, amongst others, the prospectus in the case of a fund and or the fiduciary contract and terms of business in the case of a trust company.

The application form itself is a lengthy document and clients normally need to be taken through it and language can be a barrier. An initial submission of an application and supporting documents is followed by a response from the FSA requesting clarifications or explanations or even additional documentation. This is a sensitive part of the process and requires particular attention as it may require an adjustment to the client’s business model or organisation and skilful mediation is called for in order to ensure a positive outcome.

Risk Management

Managing risk has become one of the key factors in business success or failure. Risks are many and varied. There are bank and currency risks, country & economic risks, bank & political stability risks, corruption and bribery risks, privacy and financial risks, financial and tax compliance risks, sanctions and money laundering and terrorism financing risks, market volatility and investment risks. All this apart from the normal commercial risks related to business operations and competition. This is an extraordinary list of threats to commercial activity. An underestimation of potential risk could have a devastating effect on your business.

Contact us and allow us to assist you to protect your business and assets.