The move was made in response to changes in US regulation, the firm said, and will allow it to continue providing investment advice to US residents.
Regulatory changes, including the upcoming Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), have prompted some companies to turn away US clients. HSBC Private Bank, for example, announced this month that it will cease offering wealth management services to US private clients overseas.
According to Martin Wilson, the head of wealth structuring at Signia Wealth, the firm uses third-party banking platforms to hold its clients’ assets, largely exempting it from FATCA restrictions. Moves away from US clients by larger institutions offer an opportunity for the company to pick up business, he said.
Signia Wealth’s registration with the SEC took about one month, although seeking the necessary legal and compliance advice was more time-consuming. “We are a small, nimble business and can adjust to regulatory changes quickly,” Wilson added.