Family office for wealthy Russians joins ABS ranks

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8 March 2013

From Red Square to London with Red Square London

A company that specialises in helping wealthy business people from Russia and Eastern Europe relocate to London has acquired an alternative business structure licence in order to add legal services to its business services portfolio.

Red Square London, based in Pall Mall, operates a family office-style multi-disciplinary legal and business consultancy, assisting high-net worth individuals and their families with various “discreet and personal” services, such as real estate, banking, immigration, translations and notary services, and family support.

Several of the Red Square’s employees are bilingual in English and Russian.

Director and co-founder, Tatiana Nevard, the ABS’s head of legal practice, is a company law solicitor. She previously worked in the Russian and UK offices of leading US law firm Squire Sanders.

The head of finance and administration is finance director Laurie Evanson-Goddard, a management consultant whose career has included developing IT strategy for the government of Cyprus as the country was preparing to join the European Union.

Among Red Square’s eight-person senior team, there is one other solicitor, property specialist Christopher Andrews.

Ms Nevard told Legal Futures that the firm applied for the ABS licence from the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) in “answer to our clients’ demands for the provision of legal services here in the UK… in addition to the business and personal services that we already provided. For example, as part of our real estate practice, we are now able to provide a very broad range of services, from property searches to legal support on sales and conveyancing.”

The firm has partnerships with a “bespoke property specialist” based in Moscow, Terra Real Estate, and with Brown Shipley, a 200-year-old private bank and wealth manager, which has offices in the City and in Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham and Edinburgh.

Ms Nevard said the firm plans to use the ABS to extend the range of its services “on a one-stop shop basis”. She explained: “Clients have commented again and again on the advantages of having a family office with a discreet and personal approach, and at the same time being able to provide legal services.

“The ABS structure gives us these capabilities and enables us to offer the legal services of a law firm. This makes Red Square London a very attractive option when looking for a convenient way to service their legal, business and personal needs.

She said the firm did not expect to seek external investment in the foreseeable future but added: “We are open minded about potential partnerships, joint ventures and investment opportunities.”

On the ABS application process, Ms Nevard said: “Except for a few hiccups, the process has been manageable. All at the SRA were very helpful. If we can give any advice at all, we would say make sure you allocate a dedicated team to deal with the entire process and to liaise with the SRA.”

Red Square has “big plans and ambitions”, she said. “Most importantly, we would like to continue strengthening our reputation. It is very important to us that we deliver high-end quality services to business people and their families, many of whom are considering relocating to the UK, or are already living in this country as their second home of choice.”

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