Q&A with Irina Peterson, Senior BD Manager at Maitland Group, who explains lifestyle asset administration
Irina Peterson joined Maitland in the Monaco office in 2014, having been based in the Principality for over 18 years. She is responsible for Maitland’s further growth in the private client, family office and corporate services sectors, where the group has a strong reputation for complex cross-border and multi jurisdictional advisory and administration services, with a particular focus on Monaco.
Prior to joining Maitland, the International University of Monaco alumna, who graduated in the top three of her class, worked for Monaco Asset Management and Merrill Lynch to grow their private client and wealth management businesses. Most recently, she was a senior executive manager of Eurocape New Energy.
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ML: The Maitland Group is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. Can you share a few company milestones?
Maitland was founded in Luxembourg in 1976 as a niche legal advisory firm to corporates. Soon enough, as client demand grew, the areas of expertise evolved into family office, corporate and investment services, as well as fund administration. We now have 16 offices worldwide, with 1,200 staff and administer over $280 billion of assets.
We opened an office in Monaco in 2008 to be closer to our clients who owned residences or had business activities in the Principality. In recognition of the importance of Monaco to our firm, Michael Solomon, Maitland’s Chairman, relocated from London to Monaco. Our team has now grown to 11 full-time professionals and Maitland Monaco SAM is well positioned to respond to a full spectrum of family office and private client services.
ML: Maitland Monaco deals in lifestyle asset administration. What exactly is this service, and what advantages does it offer clients?
Through our lifestyle asset administration we take away the burden of administration so that our clients can get the maximum enjoyment of their lifestyle assets, whether residences and holiday homes, yachts, aircrafts or art collections. Maitland offers the full range of private client corporate and fiduciary services, from advising clients on the most applicable structure in the most appropriate jurisdiction for estate or tax planning to will drafting and estate administration.
For example, our services relating to yachts encompass a full range of corporate services including directors, officers, statutory filing and accounting services as well as multi-jurisdictional corporate ownership structures and structuring and administrative support for the sale and purchase of these luxury assets. From yacht registration to yacht accounting frameworks, and from administrative support for restructuring and refinancing to integration of offshore structures in accordance with corporate and personal tax advice, we take care of the business side of owning a yacht.
ML: Buying a yacht is more complicated than the simple transaction of payment. What are some financial and administrative points that would-be yacht owners need to consider before signing on the dotted line?
A yacht purchase is a complicated investment. It is the ultimate luxury, a wealthy person’s private five-star hotel that can move around the world. It is an investment into someone’s personal time and also often used as a business tool, the ultimate sanctuary for privacy and an opportunity to spend quality time with family and friends.
The ever-changing requirements and regulations of the industry continue to affect yacht and aviation ownership, which means carefully structured planning remains of utmost importance. A future yacht owner needs to negotiate with much attention to detail the purchase and sale agreement, the list of delivery documents, investigate the legal status of the seller, as well as the registration of the yacht and any recorded encumbrances. A marine survey should be carried out as well as a sea trial. The buyer of a yacht should certainly seek advice in matters such as: passing of risk and title, suitable ownership structure and choice of flag (taking in account the buyer’s circumstances and intended use of the yacht), advice in connection with European VAT and other taxes, issues relating to safety, classification and placement of insurance cover.
ML: What can a potential client expect from Maitland Monaco in terms of service?
Maitland’s services in Monaco are high-touch and exceedingly personalised. Through our Monaco office, clients can also expect an entry into the services of the wider Maitland group, benefiting from an end-to-end solution to meet the full range of our client’s business and family office requirements.
In addition to marine and aviation assets, our lifestyle offering includes property and art.
Maitland has several decades of experience in administering real estate structures in all classes of real estate. Our team comprises lawyers, accountants, company secretaries and trust professionals with property experience. This combined skills set ensures entities are managed with the requisite level of corporate governance and client satisfaction.
Our lawyers and trustees have been deeply involved in working with art over the past 40 years. We have been involved in the establishment of significant art museums including the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum in Madrid, which is part of the “Golden Triangle of Art.” We currently administer several valuable international art collections.
ML: What is the current market trend between UHNWI’s and the super-yacht sector?
Industry experts have confirmed continued growth in the super-yacht sector (boats over 24 metres), a fact supported by a 40% increase in sales during 2015 compared to 2014. (Source: Boat International Media)
With respect to real estate, as a sign of its exclusiveness, Monaco residential real estate remains the most expensive in the world for the ninth consecutive year. According to the Knight Frank Wealth Report 2016, $1 million will buy you 17m2
We see a global trend of ultra-wealthy individuals purchasing luxury homes around the world to further diversify their holdings.
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Maitland Monaco team at MYS 2015[/caption]
ML: What does being a Partner of the Monaco Yacht Show signify for Maitland Monaco?
Many of our clients own yachts and so it is exceedingly relevant for Maitland to be a Partner of the Monaco Yacht Show. We appreciate the prestige and networking opportunities that come with it, as well as the chance to educate the market about the importance of proper planning when it comes to lifestyle assets administration.
ML: Give us a scoop on the Monaco Yacht Show?
There are as many if not more yachts anchored in the bay of Monaco (approximately 140 yachts) than in the harbour (approximately 120 yachts on display). Collectively the value of the yachts exceeds $4bn and the yachts on display are some of the most lavish in existence.
ML: What’s the best – and worst – part of the Monaco yacht show?
To me, one of the best things is the effervescence of Monaco during the 4 days of the yacht show, clients and professionals from anywhere in the world being present here. Also, I can’t imagine life without boats, sailing and being by the sea!
The worst thing? Hard to find something negative ... maybe the lack of sleep? Meetings and events go around the clock during the yacht show, so it’s an intense time for me and the team. We need to be ready to accommodate our guests, respond to meetings requests and in general to manage the busy calendar of events during this week.