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HOW TRUSTS CAN PROTECT YOUR WEALTH IN TOUGH TIMES

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TRUSTS

James Turner, Director at Company Formation Specialists, Turner Little

 

The future belongs to those who plan for it, and when it comes to wealth management, succession planning or safeguarding your assets against unforeseen circumstances, it’s never too early to start planning.

 

“Whether you want to set up a trust for charitable purposes, as a profit-sharing scheme for employees, or to protect your loved ones, we can help. Your reasons for setting up a trust will be highly personal and individual, which is why we take the time to discuss your priorities and concerns with you. We then work to design and implement a suitable structure that addresses your concerns,” says James Turner, Director at Company Formation Specialists, Turner Little.

 

“In times of uncertainty, trusts are typically set up for asset preservation, as trusts may help protect family wealth from events outside your control. It can provide for dependents by controlling the flow of income to beneficiaries, which is particularly useful with respect to minor children, children who don’t know how to manage money and where parents may be concerned about future divorce,” adds James.

 

“Whilst the beneficiaries’ needs are likely to change over time, the settlor can discuss and confirm these needs periodically with the trustee. In certain jurisdictions, the settlor will be able to retail a certain level of control, including the right to appoint and remove trustees, and manage the trust’s assets. Whilst this may not be appropriate, depending on your objective, the possibility means your trusts can be designed flexibly to ensure it can meet future needs,” he says.

 

Turner Little specialises in creating bespoke solutions for both individuals and businesses of all sizes. The knowledge and expertise of our specialists, ensures we are able to assist with any enquiries, no matter how complex. To find out more about how we can help you plan, get in touch with us today.

Business

THE NEXT GENERATION OF BUSINESS PAYMENTS

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Petr Kozyakov-Co-Founder and Chief Business Development Officer, Mercuryo

 

In 2020, 35.6 billion payments were made in the UK alone, according to recent numbers released by UK Finance.  Unsurprisingly this was a decline of 11% from the previous year as the world was tackling the coronavirus pandemic, with significant impact on the way we live, work and travel.

Despite this blip in overall spending volumes, payments are still big business and the industry is rapidly evolving, with pressure from consumer demand driving innovation as shoppers look for faster, cheaper and more efficient payment methods. Much of this demand comes from what consumers are seeing from technology in other areas. For instance, WhatsApp messages can be tracked and senders can see if the respondent is online and if they are responding.  We can reach this level of transparency with instant messaging, but business payments remain shrouded in mystery, until they reach the end recipient.

Whilst consumer payments evolve, business banking has seen little of this disruption. Cross border transactions for example, are still a very costly, lengthy, and inconvenient procedure for businesses of all sizes. Companies have to deal with high processing costs, lack of transparency, and a long chain of intermediaries involved in the funds transferring process from tricky onboarding and meeting all of the necessary legal requirements.

And it’s not a lack of demand that is seemingly stalling innovation and development in the sector – in recent years the need for cross-border payments has increased due to manufacturers expanding their supply chains across borders, global investment flows and international remittances as well as businesses using internationally based freelancers. The increasing demand for cross-border payments requires an efficient and safe way to transfer funds, on a global scale.

In the cross-border payments space, blockchain and cryptocurrency may become the solution, enabling near-instant payments and eliminating the complex processes and expensive fee structures in place.

 

Current processes: expensive and sluggish

Currencies are closed-loop systems meaning when transferring funds to another country, payment systems are not directly connected. This process requires a web of partners interacting to process a simple payment. Acquiring banks, emitting banks, corresponding banks, card issuing companies, all play a part, each having to interact, confirm, update and process a payment. This results in a complex and sluggish system, which is unfit for speedy and reliable payments. The delay can take up to five days and can have a detrimental effect on the supply chain distribution process for businesses and the cashflow of their suppliers.

It’s not just the staid systems in place that are causing friction but the current cost of transfers is prohibitive. Because of the web of intermediaries involved in processing, each will charge a fee for their part played, with fees ranging widely.

 

The next generation of payments: Blockchain Solutions

Sending and receiving B2B transactions should be as fast and easy as transferring money via your regular banking app, and Blockchain-based solutions are a driving force, attempting to disrupt the space. When we think about cryptocurrency, it’s easy to focus on the much-publicised trading and market elements. But this technology, when applied as a payments use case, can offer an unmatched solution – very cheap and effective payment transactions. You can move as much as several million in BTC and pay a £0.073 fee. In fact, it doesn’t really matter if you’re sending £100 or £100,000; the cost of transferring money across borders will stay exceptionally low. At a time when business finances have been hard hit, transaction fees are a significant financial burden, eating into profit margins. The ability to reduce running costs could prove to be a lifeline to businesses as they get back on their feet post Covid-19.

Using Blockchain’s distributed, consensus-based real-time verification of transactions making it very difficult to defraud. It also enables increased settlement speed compared to traditional card-based processing enabling payments to arrive in minutes.

Mercuryo is a payment infrastructure company that aims to redefine how people and businesses transact with each other and transform every business into a global one.  It is one of the leading platforms to bridge fiat money and cryptocurrency, allowing businesses across the world to operate with both fiat and crypto, send mass pay-outs, buy and sell digital assets, and execute cross-border transactions cheaper and instantly.

Implementing cryptocurrency into cross-border money transfers will provide stability, reduced cost, and improved speed to business payments across borders. It’s clear there are still regulatory and educational hurdles to be overcome before the mass implementation of blockchain derived technologies, but the potential of bridging the world of fiat and crypto assets within the payments space is very clear.

 

Petr Kozyakov-Co-Founder and Chief Business Development Officer, Mercuryo

Petr is Co-Founder and CBDO for Mercuryo, a cryptocurrency infrastructure start-up enabling businesses to accelerate their growth and boost revenue through an ecosystem of cryptocurrency payment solutions.

A seasoned professional, Petr is responsible for the overall strategic direction of the business, the signing of new partners and banks and launching new products. His passion and knowledge of the payments space stems from over 12 years working with brands in financial services such as PayOnline and PayU. In 2014 Petr became a Co-Founder and CBDO of Win Pay – one of the first companies to offer cross-border payments and card processing services to crypto-related projects which became one of the leaders in cross-border payments in the CIS market.

Petr is an experienced commentator across a range of topics in the payments and blockchain space. His areas of expertise include the changing payments landscape, electronic payments and card processing, cryptocurrency and payment regulation.

 

About Mercuryo

Mercuryo is a cryptocurrency infrastructure start-up, enabling businesses to accelerate their growth and boost revenue through an ecosystem of plug and play payment solutions. These solutions include fiat and crypto on and off ramps allowing businesses access to flexible payment types, a widget and a crypto-acquiring solution.

Businesses can build their own payment module to suit their requirements and make use of the opportunities that blockchain and crypto offer to future-proof their business.

Established in 2018, Mercuryo now has over a million users and 200+ B2B partners in its portfolio and have been integrated by numerous crypto exchanges and wallets, including Bitfinex, Bithumb, ByBit, Binance, Trezor, Trust Wallet, 1inch and more.

www.mercuryo.io

 

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Business

THE FUTURE OF CLOUD: HOW TO KEEP YOUR DATA SAFE

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By Pete Braithwaite, COO of KIT Online

Cloud services are inherently scalable, responsive and flexible. They offer huge flexibility – after all, workers are no longer limited to just a select number of pre-determined locations – and as competition for recruitment hots up too, this allows the net to be cast further afield to secure the right staff.

Movement towards the cloud will only continue to grow. In these unprecedented times, where many businesses have been hit hard by the events of the last 18 months or so, cloud offers an attractive way to scale as and when a business needs, with no capital expenditure outlay and a subscription model that many companies find appealing. You can increase – or decrease – your capacity to cope with the traditional sales calendar but also – and especially important in these times of economic uncertainty – are often able to do the same for the number of seats you are being billed for when it comes to licensing.

Pete-Braithwaite

As many businesses will be looking to grasp the potential for a post-pandemic economic rebound, how important is the cloud? And how can businesses look to both implement and adopt a cloud-based approach safely and securely, especially when it comes to managing data?

 

What’s the future of cloud?

So, what’s the future of cloud’s role in enterprise? And what implications will this have on cybersecurity and cybercrime? Well, one thing is for certain – cloud is here to stay. It offers a flexible, cost-effective way of procuring the services required for running a business with a dispersed workforce.

Cloud security considerations should be an integral part of any business now. The National Cyber Security Centre has 14 Cloud Security Principles which cover the protection of data in transit, asset protection, individual data isolation and access security, amongst other topics. The principles are not dissimilar to on-premise cyber security principles but the widening of the access points to cloud services and effective outsourcing of data storage means that lax security can open far more opportunities for attack.

To maintain the safety of data, devices and staff too, businesses must provide continual education of users on best practice, current threats and the implications and consequences of these. All staff should know what is – and what isn’t – acceptable security-wise, and the company’s policy on document sensitivity and data access. For businesses to thrive and remain safe, they must seek to implement a security-first culture.

 

How secure is the cloud?

In many ways, the cloud is in fact safer than traditional on-premise solutions. If an individual device is compromised or becomes defective, data stored in cloud services is not lost and can be accessed from an alternative device. If a device is stolen, any local data could be remotely wiped to avoid it being used perfidiously.

Alongside this, operating systems on devices are changing to better accommodate the shift to cloud. Chrome Enterprise, for example, is built for cloud-first devices with additional security features that make management even of a mixed device estate much easier to administer and keep safe.

 

How can a business adopt cloud solutions safely and securely?

Firstly, businesses must ensure a robust device policy – even for BYOD (bring your own device). The management of the estate is critical.

Next, provide a verified whitelist of trusted software and services rather than allowing users to search for – and potentially use – insecure or similar services designed to ensnare unsuspecting users.

It’s also crucial that businesses make sure that employees are educated about the security protocols, permission-based access and sensitivity of documents.

Finally, all IT teams should still confirm that cloud partners have adequate security measures – the responsibility cannot be shifted 100%. As per an on-premise solution, admins still need to be able to check that the systems and data are safe, that the latest security patches have been applied and have live visibility on any immediate threats that have been detected.

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