Featured Articles:

7 Offshore Strategies for Asset Protection & Business Solutions

  1. Trust Companies
  2. Bank Ownership
  3. Captive Insurance Companies
  4. Special Purpose Vehicles
  5. Asset Protection Trusts
  6. Foundations
  7. Offshore IPO’s

Trust Companies

A Trust Company is a business entity organized specifically for entering into Fiduciary, Trustee or Agent relationships with individuals or organizations to administer assets. It may act as a portfolio manager, executor, guardian, trustee, custodian of assets, fiscal agents and paying agents for corporations and governments who have issued bonds and provide services such as estate planning, stock registration, share transfer, etc. Trust Companies frequently have numerous other financial powers which are only limited by the jurisdiction in which they are established. Trust Companies are not required to exercise all of the powers that they are granted.

In general, a Trust Company is usually owned by one of three types of structures: an independent partnership, a bank, or a law firm. It is frequently seen as an effective alternative to bank ownership. The primary benefits are asset protection (either corporate or personal) and resolution to specific or unique business problems.

Jurisdictions of Preference:

  • Switzerland
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Ireland

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Bank Ownership

Bank ownership is not appropriate for every organization because it can be very expensive and time consuming. Thus, it cannot offer an immediate solution to business needs. The rewards, however, may be well worth it.

After the tragedy of 9/11, international banking laws and regulations have changed. The bank-chartering process can be an endurance test easily lasting 18-months even in the most accommodating of jurisdictions. Often the complexity of the application provides not only the ability for extensive due diligence but discourages unqualified applicants from even starting the process. In effect, this marathon “weeds out” those parties that are not fully committed to bank ownership.

We would be happy to discuss establishing a new bank with you in detail and assist with the application process if appropriate. You will need to plan carefully though and fees could likely reach $100,000 or more. The option of looking for an established institution can also be an attractive alternative and we certainly have opportunities that present themselves from time-to-time. In general, however, obtaining ownership of an existing bank will also require much time and expense. It should also be noted that an existing bank also offers other challenges such as potential bad loans or troubled obligations which are difficult to trace since accounting standards vary from country to country.

A bank is defined as an organization, usually a corporation, chartered by a government which does most or all of the following: receives demand deposits and time deposits, honors instruments drawn on them, and pays interest on them; discounts notes, makes loans, and invests in securities; collects checks, drafts, and notes; certifies depositor’s checks; and issues drafts and cashier’s checks. The bank charter is an agreement that governs the manner in which the bank is regulated and operates. It authorizes the existence of the bank by the agency which is primarily responsible for protecting the public from unsafe banking practices.

Jurisdictions of Preference:

  • Vary according to the qualifications and goals of the potential owners

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Captive Insurance Companies

A Captive Insurance Company is an insurance company that primarily insures the risks of businesses which are related to it through common ownership usual a parent company. The entity can be domiciled and licensed in a wide number of jurisdictions both domestically or offshore. It is estimated that about 80% of the Standard and Poor 500 companies own one or more captive insurance companies.Using a captive is commonly accepted risk management technique.

Reasons for forming a captive insurance company include:

1. Instances when insurance cannot be purchased from commercial insurance companies for a business risk. In many instances companies within an industry form a joint captive insurance company for that reason.

2. In very specific cases, premiums paid to a captive insurance company may be deductible as a business expense for tax purposes according to the Internal Revenue Service. It is important to note that the IRS has established very strict guidelines to qualify for tax benefits and the use of a professional is critical. The rule of thumb is that the insurance company will need to be adequately capitalized and offer sufficient third party (non-related) insurance to qualify.

3. Insurance can be obtained through the international reinsurance market at a more favorable premium, with higher limits of coverage.

4. Investment returns can be obtained directly on its invested capital.

Jurisdictions of Preference:

  • Bermuda
  • St. Vincent & the Grenadines

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Special Purpose Vehicles

A Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) is a financial entity created for the purpose of fulfilling a very specific or temporary objective. It is separated from the sponsoring or parent company and may be controlled by several companies working together. SPVs are typically used by companies to isolate the firm from financial risk. A company will transfer assets to the entity for management or to finance a large project thereby achieving a narrow set of goals without putting the entire firm at risk. In certain jurisdictions specific ownership percentages may be required.

Jurisdictions of Preference:

  • Ireland
  • Jersey

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Asset Protection Trusts

An Asset Protection Trust is a legal structure that splits the beneficial enjoyment of trust assets from their legal ownership. A Trust is simply a contract between the people who wish to protect assets (the Grantor) and the person who will manage the assets (the Trustee) for the benefit of all Beneficiaries which may include the Grantor other individuals.

Due to the nature of our work, Corb7 International has excellent working relationships with international attorneys that can assist you with any of your needs regarding this type of vehicle.

Jurisdictions of Preference:

  • Cook Islands

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Foundations can trace their origin to approximately 100 years ago in Western Europe. A Foundation is a separate legal entity, without members or shareholders, and is generally established to reflect the wishes of the founder, who may be an individual or a corporate entity. These wishes are contained within the Foundation’s Deed of Incorporation and Articles of Association. Foundations can be established for a fixed or indefinite period of time and can be used for charitable, commercial or for family purposes. They are often used for estate planning purposes and as an alternative to Asset Protection Trusts.

Jurisdictions of Preference:

  • Liechtenstein
  • Panama

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Offshore IPOs

Taking a non-US based entity public offshore might be an excellent means to solve specific and unique business problems or raise equity for a current subsidiary. A very detailed process, it needs to be handled by only an experienced firm.

Locations of Preference:

  • Frankfurt Exchange
  • Berlin Exchange
  • Bermuda

Click here for more information or a complimentary consultation.

Important Sources for Additional Information:

Click here to review Offering Memorandum
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