One of the biggest issues companies like the Acquarius Trust Group have is getting to “know our customers.” Often doing business in general doesn’t involve such a detailed analysis, however in the world of finance it is all important it equally applies to Acquarius and our “on boarding process.” Therefore whatever your stance on taxation, regulation and openness, at some point you will run into it as a customer of ours or as a business. We and everyone else in this line of work or similar call it “KYC” Know Your Customer.
A recent article on the KYC360 website dirty money enablers highlighted one element of this issue. In short Jahangir Hajiyev, chairman of the biggest bank in Azerbaijan, and his wife, Zamira, appeared to be living on dirty money. Between 2003 and 2015, the couple spent a fortune in the U.K. They dished out 11.5 million pounds ($14.3 million) for a townhouse in the ritzy London neighborhood of Knightsbridge and another 10.5 million pounds on a golf course and club near Ascot, the famed horse racing locale. They bought a new Gulfstream jet for $42.5 million. Meanwhile, Zamira, wielding 35 credit cards, went wild in Harrods. In one week alone, she dropped about 725,000 pounds in the department store on jewelry, designer clothes and other merchandise. The catch was that Hajiyev’s annual salary at state-owned International Bank of Azerbaijan was $70,650 in 2008, and his wife earned no significant income herself.
It is here where we become a pain to all customers because worldwide Governments in the main are continuing the fight against this kind of problem and the only way they can counter it is by ensuring everyone is open and clear as to their business and transactions. In a sense everyone including companies like us are presumed guilty and need to prove their innocence. It isn’t right but in the end it works. We at Acquarius get all the assistance we need to operate on our clients behalf and often share your frustration which is why we deal with the machinations of government for you in setting up your portfolios etc. KYC is a necessary link in the chain to ensure the reputation of this business and more importantly to safeguard your reputation and your hard earned holdings and investments.
So; next time we are chasing you for a birth certificate, passport or a signature on some paperwork, you know why and yes we agree with you.