INTERVIEW PUBLISHED ON FINANCE MONTHLY – EXPERT INSIGHT
Please introduce yourself, your role and your firm.
I am Samantha Snow, Client Services Director at Abacus Corporate Services Limited – Malta.
Could you tell us a bit more about Abacus and the services that the company offers? What are Abacus’ priorities towards its clients?
Abacus is a leading fiduciary and fund services group based in Malta and in the Isle of Man. We have an established track record of more than 40 years of excellence in providing fiduciary and professional administration services to an international client base. We pride ourselves on our stable history and our commitment to delivering value combined with top quality in bespoke solutions that are tailored to meet each client’s needs.
Our services include the establishment and administration of tax efficient corporate structures or fund, yachts and aircraft registration and management, statutory and administration services, provision of officers, corporate services and compliance support, tax consultancy and tax planning, VAT registration and administration, bookkeeping and accounting services, and cash management facilities.
Fiduciary services are broad ranging; typically what matters do Abacus assist clients with?
In a fast evolving world it is important for us to be proactive. We are committed to finding new ways in which we can assist clients through the development and provision of new solutions and keeping pace with change and ever more sophisticated tax planning. Whether an investment portfolio, trading company, real property, a luxury yacht or business jet, we can establish an effective trust, foundation, company or fund structure tailored to the needs of our clients and offer associated administration services and back office support at a level they require.
Can Abacus ensure high levels of regulatory compliance and appropriate degree of protection to clients?
Abacus Financial Services (Malta) Limited is recognised by the Malta Financial Services Authority as a fund administrator and Abacus Corporate Services Limited is authorised by the Malta Financial Services Authority to provide trustee and other fiduciary services. The Authority regulates and supervises credit and financial institutions, investment, trust and insurance business, whilst encouraging high standards of compliance. Abacus Trust Company Limited and Abacus Financial Services Limited are licensed by the Isle of Man Financial Services Authority, which is the regulatory body for the financial sector in the Island. The objectives of the Authority are to secure an appropriate degree of protection for the customers of financial services providers, the reduction of financial crime and the maintenance of confidence in the Island’s financial sector through effective regulation.
You offer VAT expertise across both Abacus’ offices – what are the most common matters that you assist with? What does your role as a Client Services Director involve?
I am responsible for leading the Malta team in the development of client relationships and enhancing technical skills with particular focus on the VAT/tax side. Typically, I help clients providing a range of support services to ensure that their structures and/or assets are effective and run efficiently. Furthermore, I assist them in mitigating their liability to tax during their lifetime and in implementing solutions for wealth preservation and funding long term care.
What attracted you to specialise in VAT and Indirect Tax matters?
I initially began my career as a VAT Assurance Officer with HM Revenue & Customs in the UK carrying out VAT inspections, then I moved on to work within the accounting and corporate sector. I spent over 15 years specialising in VAT and Indirect Tax matters and working with both domestic and international clients across a diverse range of sectors including the Remote Gaming, Financial Services, Yachting and Property and Construction industries.
What is your outlook on the future of Abacus?
Both Abacus and its service offerings have established a solid base and experience over the last 40 years whilst maintaining the founding principles of applying integrity, independence and insight across our clients’ requirements, values which have gained us recognition as a leader in our field. As one of the longest established and reputable service providers on the Isle of Man, we later expanded into Europe through the establishment of a Malta office as stable yet progressive jurisdiction. Furthermore, Malta enjoy a positive rating and one of the strongest macroeconomic expansions in the Eurozone.
So, if life truly does begin at 40, and the past 40 years are anything to go by, perhaps the fun really does start at 50… which means Abacus has a lot to look forward to over the next 10 years… and thereafter!