Asia offshore specialist heads for Europe

Asia’s largest corporate services specialist is targeting a significant share of the UK and European market for company formations with the recent opening of an office in Mayfair, London.

Offshore Incorporations Limited (OIL), long established in Hong Kong and the Far East, acts for financial intermediaries, offering company formation services.

CEO Martin Crawford said the London office would be a first step in expanding the firm across Europe, after operating for 25 years in Asia. “We wish to continue supporting our clients as they grow globally and require a wider variety of services for their offshore activities. You just need to look at the fact that over 50% of new properties in London are purchased by Asian investors to see the growth in demand for the kind of services we offer internationally oriented clients.”

Via OIL, users of offshore structures can access 15 separate jurisdictions, including locations such as Anguilla, Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Delaware, Hong Kong, Mauritius, Samoa, Seychelles and Singapore.

OIL’s view is that the UK and European markets hold considerable potential in the need to support affluent Asian individuals and Asian-based companies seeking international structures to facilitate strong and consistent capital flows from Asia to Europe.

The company’s research indicates that while historically, jurisdictions such as the British Virgin Islands and Hong Kong have dominated incorporation numbers in pure volume terms, this may be changing.

The data suggests a trend away from jurisdictional choices influenced by language, culture and time zones to a new model where the demand for new companies is emanating from within the jurisdiction itself. OIL believes this is partly due to better regulation, but also increased confidence in supervisory and compliance environments in the premier jurisdictions.

The firm will showcase its Hong Kong experience, including detailed guidance on company set ups, and the bureaucratic idiosyncrasies often overlooked when a shelf company is purchased.

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