Providence

Lisa Smith, BA (Hons), CeFA
By

Providence recognises that while the life of expats is fluid and without borders, their finances are often shackled by geography.

While expats have the freedom to move between companies and countries, their savings and investments are generally stuck in one place that may well put them at a financial and tax disadvantage.

This can leave expats with a trail of under-performing investments or big bills for moving them to a new country.

Providence offers an offshore savings and investment solution for expats which means their money can stay put and grow while they move to take on new challenges.

Abut Providence

Providence is a specialist offshore provider offering savings and investment products designed to match the financial expectations of expats.

The company is based in the up-and-coming financial centre of Mauritius, where it is supervised by the island’s financial watchdog. The administration is based in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.

Expats can access their accounts and a full range of services in real-time online 24/7 from anywhere with internet access.

The company is partnered with many big brands in financial services.

Fund managers include Jupiter, Invesco, Fidelity and Cornhill.

Providence also has links with investment partners Barclays, Morgan Stanley, UBS and Bloomberg; while trusts are offered by Sovereign, STM Group and Harbour Pensions.

Visit the Providence web site for more information

Why save or invest with Providence?

Providence is not a financial advice firm. The company works together with international financial advisers around the world to offer savings and investments through several products built with expats in mind.

Typical advice for expats starts with keeping investments offshore rather than in the country where you live. 

This avoids putting your money at risk if the politics and economy of the place where you live, and work are unstable and allows access to cash in an emergency.

For expats on the move, it makes sense not to have savings and investments in one country when you live in another. 

This can trigger cross-border tax consequences if you leave the investment where it is. Moving your money from place to place as you relocate is also expensive because you are stopping and starting financial products before they have a chance to grow.

Saving and investing with an offshore provider is a better solution, as you can leave your cash safely sitting in one place, giving you the financial freedom to move as you wish.

Providence savings and investment products

Providence offers four saving and investment products:

Compass Regular Saving Plan

Compass is a savings plan with fund options to match your attitude to risk.

Expats can pay in as much as they want, when they want, providing some minimum rules are followed.

Contributions start at US$300 a month over a minimum five year term, although premium holidays of up to a year are available if saving becomes difficult while expats are out of contract.

Compass comes with a loyalty bonus paid every five years from the policy’s tenth anniversary.

Find out more about the Compass Regular Savings Plan

Horizon Portfolio Bond

The Horizon Portfolio Bond is a versatile savings plan that works as somewhere to help regular savings grow or seamlessly linked in to a Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes (QROPS) as a home for historic pension contributions.

As a standalone saving nest-egg, money can be paid in regularly or as a lump sum.

As a pension add-on, Horizon works as a convenient place to manage QROPS investments.

The minimum initial investment is US$60,000.

Find out more about the Horizon Portfolio Bond

Orbit Portfolio Bond

The Orbit Portfolio Bond works on a different level from the Horizon Portfolio Bond.

The main difference is Horizon can be standalone or within a pension, while Orbit has the standalone attributes but is designed to be held in trust.

Savers can access the full fund without early encashment charges providing the balance does not fall below 10% of the minimum initial investment value.

The minimum initial investment is US$45,000

Find out more about the Orbit Portfolio Bond

Polaris Portfolio Bond

The Polaris Portfolio Bond is another flexible savings solution from Providence that allows expats to withdraw money when they need it.

The plan is for medium to long-term saving.

The bond can be held in trust or as a standalone savings and investment platform.

The minimum initial investment is US$60,000.

Find out more about the Polaris Portfolio Bond

Tracking your money online

Providence has invested significantly in technology to help expat customers keep tabs on their money 24/7 from wherever they are in the world.

A secure link to the Providence web site lets expats view real-time fund prices that are updated daily.

Switching funds within a saving plan or investment bond is free.

More information to compare funds and their performance is available in an investor hub. Fact sheets, graphs and charts contrast prices and growth so expats can select investments that are right for them.

Although the Providence online platform gives expats the chance to self-manage their investments, this can be linked with advice from an IFA, or the job can be handed to a fund manager.

Becoming a Providence customer

Opening a savings account or bond with Providence is usually via the recommendation of an international IFA.

The IFA should the appropriate credentials to give investment advice in the country where you live.

Summary

Providence is set up as a one-stop offshore savings and investment shop for expats.

The plans and bonds are simple and versatile solutions that solve the typical expat problems of how to keep saving when on the move.

Access to accounts is simple from anywhere in the world with an internet connection, which lets expats manage their money in real-time.

Besides that, Providence is an established provider based in a well regulated jurisdiction, which adds trust and integrity to the business.

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