Paul Kneen, Chief Executive Officer of Abacus Financial Services Group, recently returned from the ‘Knowledge, Professional & Financial Services Week’ which formed part of the seven week International Festival for Business 2014 (IFB) in Liverpool. During his visit he joined a panel of expert speakers for the Isle of Man Department of Economic Development’s ‘Managing Your Family Office with Confidence’ event. Here, he provides his comments on the event and the festival as a whole.
30 July 2014 (Isle of Man)…Paul Kneen, Chairman of the Isle of Man Funds Association and Chief Executive Officer of Abacus Financial Services Group, recently returned from the ‘Knowledge, Professional & Financial Services Week’ which
formed part of the seven week International Festival for Business 2014 (IFB) in Liverpool. During his visit Mr Kneen joined a panel of expert speakers for the Isle of Man Department of Economic Development’s ‘Managing Your Family Office with Confidence’ event.
Commenting on the event, Mr Kneen said “With the IFB being staged so conveniently in Liverpool, I was very keen to take advantage of the substantial resource and expense afforded to the organisation of an event on our doorstep. With approximately 200,000 people predicted to attend the event over the seven week period, the prospect of meeting so many business professionals and their companies
from across the globe in such a close location, was too good an opportunity to miss.
In my role as Chairman of the Isle of Man Funds Association, I am always keen to find new ways and places to promote the Isle of Man as a fund jurisdiction, and to inform people about the structuring opportunities we have available. The opportunity to speak at one of the Department of Economic Development’s breakfast events as a
representative for the Island’s funds sector provided the perfect platform to meet this objective.
The Family Office event took the form of a breakfast seminar and aimed to showcase the Isle of Man’s credentials as a place to manage a family office to private investors and professional advisors and intermediaries. The event included a panel of speakers from a number of the island’s professional associations who share an overall objective to further promote the Isle of Man as a jurisdiction of choice for wealthy individuals, families and companies. The event enabled us to promote the Island’s business friendly environment by demonstrating how each of the services provided across the various sectors interact both with each other but also positively within the legal and regulatory environment supported by the Isle of Man Government.
My presentation discussed family offices from a funds perspective, informing delegates of the range of schemes available here, with particular focus on private funds and how they can be used by family offices to benefit their asset and wealth structuring needs. The Isle of Man has long been a jurisdiction of choice for wealthy individuals, families, companies and other organisations. As a recognised international financial centre of excellence, the Island is renowned for its robust regulatory system, political stability and highest standards of financial integrity; all very attractive attributes and key factors in attracting wealthy families looking to structure their assets.
Overall, the seminar was a great success, very well attended with over 120 guests, and followed by a busy networking session with many of the delegates queuing up to discuss various aspects of the presentations with the speakers. I was able to meet and talk to a number of individuals with a number of opportunities being identified for further development. We were also able to forge a number of new links with our counterparts in the North West with who we now look to develop mutually beneficial working relationships with the aim of expanding services provided from within the Isle of Man.
Was the festival successful? The best measure of success of the event is probably in an announcement from George Osbourne during the festival, in which he confirmed that the UK government has already committed to funding the IFB again in Liverpool for 2016.
If you’re looking for family office services for yourself or you represent someone with this need and wish to discuss the opportunities the Isle of Man can offer, please contact Paul Kneen at firstname.lastname@example.org.