AES International has been granted Corporate Chartered Financial Planner status by the UK’s Chartered Insurance Institute, allowing its recently-opened branch in the Dubai International Financial Centre, to offer chartered services to expats in the region.
And in addition to receiving the corporate status, the firm said that it has also committed to having at least 75% of its advisers as individual holders of Chartered Insurance Institute’s (CII) Chartered Financial Planner status by 2017.
AES chief executive Sam Instone said in a statement announcing the company’s new chartered status, that he was proud of his team for committing to “positive change” within the marketplace and achieving another milestone, on what he has called a “mission to disrupt the status quo of traditional expat investing”.
“We believe that international investors deserve better and we are committed to providing them with a flexible and transparent service,” he said. “Expats are weary and sceptical following years of exposure to unqualified international financial salespeople charging unreasonable, undisclosed commissions and causing long-term damage to their personal finances”.
AES, which has its UK FCA authorised headquarters in London and a DFSA regulated branch within the Dubai International Financial Centre (pictured above), pointed that fewer than 5% of UK firms have qualified for the profession’s Gold Standard.
‘Terrible advice in the past’
Stuart Ritchie, chartered financial planner and chartered wealth manager at AES, hit out at financial advice in the Middle East region. He said: “We are passionate about setting the professional standard and upholding the highest fiduciary standards. The sorry truth is that many of international investors have received terrible advice in the past.”
Established in 2004, AES International has seven international offices covering 35 jurisdictions where licences are held, including in the Dubai International Financial Centre. It states that it offers a UK-oriented approach to financial services “wherever a client is in the world”.
The Chartered Insurance Institute has more than 120,000 members in more than 150 countries and is the world’s largest professional body dedicated to the financial services sector.