Brussels rivals Dunhill and Cross Border merging, to form Belgium’s No. 1 US expat specialist

Representatives from Belgium’s two largest American-expat-focused advisory businesses – Cross Border Planning and Dunhill Financial – have revealed that their companies are to merge.

In a joint statement, the two companies said that they were joining forces in order to “build out” their financial services offering for expatriates. Both companies already look after expats of other nationalities in addition to Americans.

james-jim-mcevoy-croppedCross Border Planning was founded in Brussels in 1989 by James McEvoy,  pictured left,  an American from the state of Ohio, who will be a partner in the newly-formed business and an adviser.

Dunhill Financial is also based in Brussels, and was founded in 2011 by Brian Dunhill, pictured above,  originally from Florida (although he has also lived in San Francisco and Chicago, and is, he says, a long-time Cubs season-ticket holder).

He will also be a partner in the business, and like McEvoy, will also advise clients.

The Cross Border Planning name was agreed on, rather than something new or a combination of the two existing corporate names, according to Dunhill, because “Cross Border Planning articulates who we will be looking to help”.

Ixelles district offices

The company will occupy Dunhill Financial’s existing offices on Avenue des Saison, in Brussels’s Ixelles district, near the city’s two main universities.  Currently the company has “a headcount of eight, not including contractors and interns”, Dunhill says.

Plans are for the newly-combined company to retain some of Dunhill Financial’s most popular features, which include a robo-advice system, OmniWealth.eu, which helps clients to set up their own low-cost investment accounts; and a corporate affiliation with the so-called Fair Trade Gold project, which looks to support well-run, small-scale gold mining operations around the world.

Dunhill said he and his team also plan to continue to advise John Foti, manager of the Grand Prix Investors Fund, a mutual fund comprised of the stocks of companies that sponsor, supply, and support the FIA Formula One World Championship.

SEC regulated

Dunhill Financial is regulated by the US Securities and Exchange Commission, and according to the company’s founder, the new business will also be SEC-regulated. As reported, when it joined the Federation of European Independent Financial Advisers earlier this year, it became its first SEC-regulated advisory firm member.

The company’s website, which has not yet been updated to reflect the merger,  will be www.crossborderplanning.net.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Helen Burggraf
Helen Burggraf is the editor of International Investment. A US-trained journalist, she has worked in Rome, New York City and London, covering everything from the fashion and retailing industries to the global drinking water and water-treatment sector, private equity, and most recently, the international cross-border financial services/advice industry.

Read more from Helen Burggraf

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