Finance Monthly - March 2023

MARCH 2 0 2 3

Finance Monthly. Ed i t or ’ s No t e Hello and welcome to Finance Monthly Magazine’s March 2023 edition! As I struggle to comprehend the fact that we’re approaching the end of Q1 already, I present Finance Monthly’s March 2023 selection of interviews and articles exploring topics like the future of the finance industry, the rise of artificial intelligence, the state of cryptocurrencies this year and so much more! Here are some of our favourite stories from our March 2023 edition: All of this and so much more - I hope you enjoy the content in Finance Monthly’s March 2023 issue! For more financial news and commentary, please visit our website to stay up-to-date on industry news as it happens, join the conversation on our Twitter (@Finance_Monthly), like our Facebook page and follow us on LinkedIn and Instagram (@FinanceMonthly). Best wishes, Katina Male Editor Copyright 2023 Published by Universal Media Ltd The views expressed in the articles within Finance Monthly are the contributors’ own, nothing within the announcements or articles should be construed as a profit forecast. All rights reserved. Material contained within this publication is not to be reproduced in whole or part without the prior permission of Finance Monthly. Circulation details can be found at Universal Media Ltd PO Box 17858, Tamworth, B77 9QG United Kingdom 0044 (0) 1543 255 537 8. Follow us on Instagram Financemonthly Find us on Facebook Finance Monthly Stay Connected Tweet us @Finance_Monthly Monthly Finance 3 OpenAI’s ChatGPT Who Will Benefit from the Hype Around it? 18. What Should Businesses Do in a Time of Economic Uncertainty 36. 4 Key Trends for the Finance Industry in 2023 Is 2023 the Year that Cryptocurrencies Can Rebuild Trust and Transparency? 60.

Finance Monthly. Con t en t s 4 CONTENTS THE MONTHLY ROUND-UP News You Can’t Afford to Miss 6. 8. FRONT COVER FEATURE What Leaders Struggle with During Turbulent Economic Times What Should Business Do in a Time of Economic Uncertainty Helping Introverts in the Workplace How to Manage AML Compliance in the Property Sector 14. BUSINESS & ECONOMY 18. OpenAI ChatGPT Who Will Benefit from the Hype Around it? 22. 26.

Finance Monthly. 5 Con t en t s Ailleron’s Agreement with ING Bank Slaski and National Cloud Operator Dickson & Co Acquires Jim Burton Insurance Services Fotowatio Renewable Ventures Acquires a Majority Stake in a Battery Storage Platform in Greece 66. TRANSACTION REPORTS 68. Deducting Difficulties: Introducing the Tax Technologist 32. 56. 14. What Leaders Struggle with During Turbulent Economic Times Finance – The Next Big Innovation in Auto Manufacturing? BANKING & FINANCIAL SERVICES Deducting Difficulties: Introducing the Tax Technologist 4 Key Trends for the Finance Industry in 2023 Transform or Lose Competitive Advantage: The Pressure on Financial Services Top Tips on Financial Security in the Current Climate This is What You Need to Do to Inspire Talent in the Finance Team Current Trends in Lending 32. 36. Finance – The Next Big Innovation in Auto Manufacturing? Is 2023 the Year that Cryptocurrencies Can Rebuild Trust and Transparency? 56. FINANCIAL INNOVATION & FINTECH 60. 40. 44. 46. 50. 69.

Finance Monthly. 6 THE MONTHLY ROUND-UP News You Can’ t Af ford to Mi ss The Mon t h l y Round -Up NICOLA STURGEON RESIGNS AS SCOTLAND’S FIRST PRIME MINISTER After over eight years as Scotland’s first minister, Nicola Sturgeon has announced her resignation. The leader of the Scottish National Party stated that she believed it was the appropriate time to step down, both in her head and heart. Ms. Sturgeon will continue in her current role until her successor is elected. As the longest-serving first minister and the first woman to hold the position, her resignation marks the end of an era. Ms. Sturgeon clarified that her decision to resign was not a reaction to recent issues such as gender reforms, trans prisoners, or the strategy on independence, which have generated pressure. She acknowledged that there had been “choppy waters” recently, but said that the decision is coming from “a deeper and longer-term assessment”. “Since the very first moment in the job, I have believed that part of serving well would be to know, almost instinctively, when the time is right to make way for someone else,” Ms. Sturgeon said. “And when that time came, to have the courage to do so, even if many across the country, and in my party, might feel it too soon. “In my head and in my heart I know that time is now. That it is right for me, for my party and for the country. “And so today I am announcing my intention to step down as first minister and leader of my party.”

Finance Monthly. 7 The Mon t h l y Round -Up FTX FOUNDER HIT WITH NEW CHARGES According to figures released by Russia’s statistics agency, the country’s economy contracted by 2.1% in 2022, which was less than the initial prediction of a 12% fall, despite the invasion of Ukraine. While some have raised questions about the accuracy of the data, RUSSIA’S ECONOMY SHRINKS BY 2.1% many observers have been surprised at the economy’s resilience, which has been supported by high oil prices and military spending. Although hundreds of Western firms withdrew from Russia after the invasion, the country was still able to export energy for most of last year, Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of the now-collapsed cryptocurrency exchange FTX, is facing four new criminal charges. He’s accused of conspiring to commit bank fraud and make illegal political donations. Previously, Mr Bankman-Fried pleaded not guilty to charges of defrauding customers and investors. With the new charges, he now faces a total of 12 criminal charges and could face more than 100 years in prison if convicted. Prosecutors claim that he conspired with two other former FTX executives to donate tens of millions of dollars to influence US politicians to pass laws favourable to the company. Allegedly, these donations were made through “straw” donors or with corporate funds, allowing Mr Bankman-Fried to evade contribution limits. His Alameda Research hedge fund and FTX customer funds were used to fund many of these donations. Judge Lewis Kaplan has set a trial date of 2 October. A spokesman for Bankman-Fried declined to comment on the charges. and rising global prices for oil, gas, and other exports helped to boost the economy. Agriculture, construction, and hospitality all saw growth, while manufacturing and retail trade declined. Local entrepreneurs also stepped in to fill the gap left by departing Western companies, as exemplified by the rebranding of McDonald’s restaurants. Additionally, the production of equipment for the military helped keep factories busy, and military security and public administration expanded by 4.1% last year.

8 Finance Monthly. Fron t Cove r Fea t ur e

OpenAI’s ChatGPT Who Will Benefit from the Hype Around it? Maxim Manturov, Head of Investment Research at Freedom Finance Europe, shares which companies are likely to profit from the increased discussion of AI and its uses. At the World Economic Forum this year, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that Artificial Intelligence (AI) would become “mainstream” in “months, not years”. Now that AI seems to have reached a point where it can permeate any discussion and any sector, and importantly, can be applied to a wide range of enterprise and consumer applications, we can be sure that tech giants will be looking to invest heavily in AI to remain competitive. ChatGPT, a chatbot developed by OpenAI, has taken the internet by storm over the past month. Although it is not smart enough to replace humans yet, the bot can respond to natural language prompts and uses past conversation threads and information on the internet to reply to the user. A few days after its launch, more than a million people were trying out ChatGPT. If an ‘AI wars’ between tech companies does occur in a bid to be the best, industry leaders providing the technology used to produce AI should reap solid benefits – and profits. Potentially even more than Microsoft or other major technology platforms. Finance Monthly. Fron t Cove r Fea t ur e 9

Nvidia (NVDA) is the world leader in artificial intelligence due to its quality product portfolio. The invention of graphic processing units (GPUs) in 1999 was an influential moment in the computing industry. GPUs are essential for AI to achieve its parallel processing capabilities, so Nvidia is still a key industry player decades later and is benefitting from the boom in conversation around ChatGPT. Interestingly, ChatGPT currently runs on Nvidia’s two-year-old A100 chip, not the latest H100 or ‘Hopper’, which was released late last year. The new chip will supposedly perform AI learning functions nine times faster than the A100 chip and output (the action of an AI responding to a question or other stimulus) 30 times quicker. It also promises 3.5 times better energy efficiency and three times lower total cost ownership. When ChatGPT adopts the new chip, it is clear its capabilities will improve significantly. While Nvidia’s revenue from gaming chips fell sharply in the third quarter from the impact the pandemic had on the video game industry and cryptocurrency bear market, data centre revenue grew by an impressive 31%. With the release of the Hopper H100 chips and the start of the AI wars, we expect Nvidia to produce significant returns in 2023. ASML Holdings (ASML) manufactures lithography systems which are critical in microchip production and are heavily relied upon by Nvidia to produce their GPUs. ASML has a monopoly on a key technology used in manufacturing advanced semiconductors called extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography. After chip companies started producing semiconductors with new advanced specifications, there was a need for the extremely thin lasers that EUV technology contains. With AI continually making advancements, it will require chips that advance with it. ASML technology allows for these advancements and will no doubt increase purchases of its machines. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation (TSM) is the world’s first dedicated semiconductor foundry and is another significant contributor to Nvidia’s GPU production, giving it a competitive edge. In Q4 of 2022, TSMC produced more than 56% of the world’s semiconductors. The management team at TSMC stressed that its highperformance computing segment for AI customers is the reason for its optimism about the semiconductor market recovering in the second half of 2023. Five major contributors to AI technology “ChatGPT currently runs on Nvidia’s twoyear-old A100 chip, not the latest H100 or ‘Hopper’, which was released late last year.” Fron t Cove r Fea t ur e 10 Finance Monthly.

Micron Technology (MU), a memory manufacturer, will benefit from the uptake of AI solutions due to the large amounts of memory and storage it requires. Currently, Micron’s results are in freefall, and earnings are likely to be negative over the next two quarters from the historic slump in PC sales and weakness in smartphones and consumer electronics, which unfortunately have outweighed the delicate supply-demand balance in the memory market. With limited competition, Micron and SK Hynix have announced drastic cost reductions for 2023, which should help rebalance supply and demand in the second half of 2023. Additionally, Micron achieved technological leadership within its limited competition last year. In the past six months alone, Micron became the first memory manufacturer to release DRAM 1-beta chips and the first manufacturer of 232-layer NAND flash memory chips. As the current leader in this space, and thanks to other market players seemingly cutting back on production, Micron should benefit in the second half of 2023 and beyond as demand for memory-intensive AI servers dramatically increases. Microsoft (MSFT) invested $1 billion (83m) inOpenAI in 2019, and now the cloud giant is reportedly in talks to invest another $10 billion (£8.34bn) in the company, which indicates great potential in this new and improved AI engine. Last week, Microsoft released the OpenAI service on its Azure platform, which allows developers to incorporate it into their software projects. In fact, Microsoft itself is looking to infuse its current software products, from Office to Bing, with ChatGPT capabilities. “Micron Technology (MU), a memory manufacturer, will benefit from the uptake of AI solutions due to the large amounts of memory and storage it requires.” Finance Monthly. Fron t Cove r Fea t ur e 11

Business Economy 14. What Leaders Struggle with During Turbulent Economic Times What Should Business Do in a Time of Economic Uncertainty Helping Introverts in the Workplace How to Manage AML Compliance in the Property Sector 18. 22. 26.

Lynda Hoffman is a Professional Certified Coach (PCC) with the International Coaching Federation (ICF). Through her business, Lynda Hoffman Life Coaching, she coaches passionate and self-directed business professionals - with or without ADHD - who want to create meaningful personal and organizational change. Lynda partners with clients to increase their personal agency and strategic decision-making. Her extensive experience in the fields of executive functioning and mindfulness training supports clients in understanding how their brain functioning informs their behaviour - and how to change what needs changing. She encourages her clients to do the deeper work to create transformational change – the kind that lasts. Lynda Hoffman WHAT LEADERS STRUGGLE WITH DURING TURBULENT ECONOMIC TIMES Bus i ne s s & Economy Finance Monthly. 14

“Turbulence is such a great word to describe the times we’re living in. Everything feels like it’s on a low boil, in constant motion with no clear idea of when or how it will settle. And while it’s uncomfortable, it’s also a perfect opportunity for executives to hone their deeper skills.” Finance Monthly. Bus i ne s s & Economy 15

What are some of the key concerns executives come to you with in light of the current turbulent economic environment? Turbulence is such a great word to describe the times we’re living in. Everything feels like it’s on a low boil, in constant motion with no clear idea of when or how it will settle. And while it’s uncomfortable, it’s also a perfect opportunity for executives to hone their deeper skills. Business is all about managing uncertainty, but now executives are being asked to lead when nothing we’ve counted on feels certain. The current times are not just about economics. Leaders are being called on to lead in a climate of fear. As a professional coach, I know that what you fear is what you create. If you’re afraid of uncertainty, you tend to create more chaos. Our brains are wired to go into reactive thinking when we‘re afraid. That’s when executive functioning can go offline, even for leaders. The result? Poor decision-making. Poor communication. Poor planning. The leaders I work with know intuitively that empowerment – of themselves and their teams - is the key to navigating uncertainty. The driving idea is not to play victim to the uncertainty of our time, but rather, to lead forward. For my clients, this means creating focused, autonomous, resilient teams. My clients all share the same concern. They want their team members to take initiative, bemore self-directed and think critically about all that they do. They want them to think about how their actions move the mission of the organization forward, rather than operating in silos. They’re mentally flexible enough to operate in the detail and shift back to the larger picture. This pinging back and forth between detail and the big picture is the source of coherent action - and it’s especially necessary in times of turbulence. What are some of the techniques you help them with? Coaching is more about strategy than technique. Applying strategies expertly requires robust self-awareness. My clients recognize that their own patterns can get in the way of effectively cultivating these higher-order skills in their teams. For example, when a leader has a deep-seated commitment to create a more human-centred work environment, and they believe that structure is corrosive to free thinking, they may then have a tendency to remove any and all structure. The belief that structure is cognitively restrictive is just plain inaccurate. If a leader holds onto this limiting belief as if it were true, their team members will be waiting to be told what to do, rather than thinking independently for themselves. When I coach my clients to create great outcomes, we start and end with self-awareness. When they begin to go more deeply, they become more aware of the questions they ask themselves – or more importantly, the ones they tend not to ask. When you can begin to delve into areas you were not aware of before, you begin to see the problem in entirely new ways. Possibilities suddenly open up. Self-awareness always includes the development of meta-cognition, the awareness of your thinking. Meta-cognition is the brain-based executive skill that strengthens “Coaching is more about strategy than technique. Applying strategies expertly requires robust self-awareness.” Bus i ne s s & Economy Finance Monthly. 16

your ability to identify what you’re doing well, and what behaviours need tweaking. Leaders looking for a strategic edge do well when they begin to shine the light on the thoughts and beliefs that inform their decisions. Meta-cognition is the cornerstone of strategic thinking. Here are some questions that my clients have learned to ask themselves: Spotting limiting beliefs What am I believing that generates a lot of emotion? What choices do I make from this place? Where else in my life does this belief show up? In what way is this belief part of my value system – or not? Identifying the core issues - accurately What is actually happening? How do I know my perception is accurate? Am I viewing this from my vantage point or the team’s? What patterns do I see in the evidence presented to me? Communicating more effectively What message do I really want to be sending? What am I actually communicating? How clear and consistent is my messaging? What have I been reluctant to communicate? Delegating seamlessly When I think about delegating, what am I aware of inside of myself? What choices do I then make? What skills or beliefs do I need to make delegating easier and systematic? What steps am I willing to take to make this a reality? What are your tips for leading and remaining resilient in economic uncertainty? Resilience is all about being able to adapt flexibly. This requires us to surrender to the reality that our choices are limited to what we have direct control over. To surrender is not easy for leaders who believe they are expected to be in control. But it’s an essential first step. Once you’ve cleared yourself of this burden of overresponsibility, you can choose to focus where you have power. Decide to put your energy where it will have the most impact. Focus on what works, not on what might not work. What we focus on grows. In times of uncertainty, it’s important to focus on solutions and not on what we fear. Leaders already know that resilience is created when they fully choose their experience. It may feel like we’re being buffeted about by the turbulent times, but we always have the capacity to choose our next steps. It is the act of consciously choosing that increases our sense of agency. It gives us the sense that we do have a measure of control. And when we choose in this way, we’re much more likely to make the best choices. Here are some ways you can increase your sense of choice during periods of great uncertainty. • Use your self-knowledge – don’t just think about it. • Practice checking in with yourself – don’t avoid what scares you. • Balance your physical, emotional and spiritual needs – plan for them. • Be transparent – clear communication creates trust. • Create structures for creativity to rise to the top – don’t just expect it to rise. • Connect your organization’s bigger picture back to your team members’ roles. “The central question of a warrior’s training is not how we avoid uncertainty and fear but how we relate to discomfort.” -American Buddhist nun Pema Chodron This is the wisdom in a period of turbulence. Choose to turn inward and become wise with it all. It truly is the calling of our time. Finance Monthly. Bus i ne s s & Economy 17

Bus i ne s s & Economy Finance Monthly. 18 Nicola Rout Associate Solicitor T: +44 (0)1206 217031 M: +44 (0)7808 331806 E:

NicolaRout isanAssociateSolicitoratThompsonSmithandPuxon, aLegal 500recommended firm in Essex offering a full range of legal services to businesses and individuals. She sits within the corporate and commercial team and specialises in restructuring and insolvency, having qualified in 2002 and worked in the City for several years, before joining TSP in 2019. Nicola is also a member of R3 and the Insolvency Lawyers Association. What steps should a business take at a time of economic stress? All businesses are facing economic challenges at the moment, with the rise in costs across the board. Liquidity is a key factor for the survival of any business and given rising interest rates, the ability to source credit is squeezed even further. Businesses should look to reduce their debt burden, where possible and ensure they are calling in any debts owed to them. If your business is facing financial difficulties, those in your supply chain will likely be struggling too and you do not wish to have your financial stresses exacerbated by a domino effect of insolvencies. Nicola Rout Associate Solicitor at Thompson Smith and Puxon What Should Businesses do in a Time of ECONOMIC UNCERTAINTY I would advise that businesses need to engage proactively with their creditors, suppliers and shareholders to ensure they have the support they need to survive. Perhaps most importantly, businesses should take professional advice from their solicitors and accountants, and crucially take advice early to give enough time for agreements to be Finance Monthly. Bus i ne s s & Economy 19

reached, in advance of any forced commencement of an insolvency procedure, by which point it can be too late to salvage the business. Taking early advice can also help mitigate any potential claims against directors if the company enters into a formal insolvency procedure. What have been some of the recent trends in liquidations that you’ve noticed, considering the current environment? What trends do you anticipate to see in 2023? The number of liquidations has started to rise, in comparison with the last few years when companies had the benefit of government support during the pandemic, through the furlough scheme and the availability of bounce-back loans (BBLs) and the coronavirus business interruption loan scheme (CBILS). The most recent set of insolvency statistics show that creditor voluntary liquidations are rising, currently at 37% more than in January 2020. Compulsory liquidations are also up, but are a much lower percentage of overall corporate insolvencies. Some commentators believe the current rise in insolvency relates to those companies which would have become insolvent in any event, but were given a temporary lifeline during Covid and are now choosing to shut up shop. I think we are yet to see the full impact of the cost-of-living crisis and inflated energy costs on insolvency numbers, especially as the threat of recession remains. I anticipate the retail, hospitality and construction sectors will be those most likely to struggle in 2023. What are directors’ duties in times of economic difficulty? Directors usually have to act in such a way as to promote the success of the company for the benefit of its shareholders. However, once the company begins to experience economic difficulty, their duties should shift towards putting the interests of the creditor body as a whole ahead of the members. The directors can be investigated by any subsequent liquidator or administrator for actions taken at this time, which can lead to personal liability for the directors and so any steps taken in the management of a company under economic stress should be carefully considered. The recent Supreme Court case of BTI 2014 LLC v Sequana SA gave greater clarity to directors as to when their duties shift from shareholders to creditors. This was held to be when the directors knew or ought to have known that the company was insolvent or close to it and that an administration or liquidation was probable. It was stated that the closer the company came to Bus i ne s s & Economy Finance Monthly. 20

insolvency, the more the directors had to be mindful of the creditors’ interests. What are some of the actions which can be brought against directors once a company has gone into insolvency? When a liquidator is appointed, the powers of the directors cease and the liquidator takes over the running of the company. In an administration, the directors may not exercise any management power without the administrator’s consent. The insolvency office holder must investigate how the directors conducted themselves during the relevant time prior to the insolvency and will file a report with the Insolvency Service. Directors can be disqualified for between 2 to 15 years where their behaviour falls short. Weareseeingmoredisqualification orders now, largely due to the fraudulent use of BBLs. A claim can be made by an administrator or liquidator of wrongful trading, which is when a director knew or ought to have known that insolvency could not be avoided and did not take every step to minimise the losses to creditors. Directors (including de facto and shadow directors) can be fined and held personally liable for any deficiency in assets from when they ought to have known the insolvency couldn’t be avoided to the point when the company entered into liquidation or administration. There is also the possibility of bringing a claim of fraudulent trading against the directors, which is a criminal offence with possible penalties of imprisonment and fines. In a liquidation, directors can be liable for misfeasance where a director has misused company assets and/or breached their duties. This too can carry personal liability. Similarly, as part of their investigations the officeholder will review any transaction within specific time periods to see if they can be classified as a preference, a transaction at undervalue or a transaction defrauding creditors, which can all be unwound and the company restored to the position it would have been in had the transaction not taken place. The directors also need to be aware of the status of their directors’ loans. In the event of insolvency, any money owing under these loans will become immediately repayable. “All businesses are facing economic challenges at the moment, with the rise in costs across the board.” Finance Monthly. Bus i ne s s & Economy 21

We speak with Jenny Toh – the founder and director of River Life Coaching Pte. Ltd. in Singapore. Jenny holds the Professional Certified Coach (PCC) credential issued by the International Coaching Federation (ICF) which attests to her commitment to a high standard of coaching competencies and adherence to a strict code of ethics. Her passion is to empower introverts to embrace their introversion as a strength and not a sign of weakness and to define success on their own terms. Jenny provides one-to-one coaching in a customised program format as well as group coaching. She’s also a certified mentor coach who supports other ICF credentialed coaches master their coaching competencies for the purposes of applying or renewing their credentials. Prior to coaching, Jenny was a practising lawyer with experience in corporate litigation, intellectual property and financial derivatives work. Jenny Toh Founder & Director of River Life Coaching What brought you to coaching? I was first bitten by the coaching bug when I was working in a financial institution and had taken a short coaching course to be a better team lead and supervisor. It was only several years later in 2019 that I decided to train as a coach. What made me take this leap of faith? As I am a Christian, I believe that this is what God is calling me into as my purpose in this season of my life. It wasn’t an easy decision for me to make as training and then starting my coaching business in 2020, at the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic was a big step outside my comfort zone. It was definitely one which took a lot of courage and yes, a big leap of faith into the unknown. However, since I made this transition, I am pleased to say that it has been fulfilling on all fronts and I know Helping INTROVERTS in the Workplace that through my 800+ hours of coaching with over 200+ clients, I know I am making an impact to people in my own way. Why is coaching important? I like this quote by Tom Landry, an American football coach where he said, “A coach is someone who tells you what you don’t want to hear, who has you Bus i ne s s & Economy Finance Monthly. 22

see what you don’t want to see, so you can be who you have always known you could be.” A coach is not your friend or a mentor and a coach will not provide you with all the answers. However, a coach will partner with you to find out who you truly are – your potential to be the person you can be – and support you in setting goals, developing the right mindset and belief in yourself that you already have all the answers within you to live a fulfilling, purposeful life. There may be difficult moments in a coaching conversation where you discover a particular way of thinking that you have been adopting has been holding you back. Facing these difficult moments with your coach will help you grow and achieve what you truly want from your life. I believe we all have the potential to create and leave a positive impact in the community and society we live in and working with your coach will help you discover what that means for you. What benefits can clients expect? A fully engaged and committed client to their professional and personal growth will see positive changes in the way they think and behave. They will gain awareness of their own limiting beliefs and inner critics in their minds that have been holding them back Finance Monthly. Bus i ne s s & Economy 23

from achieving their goals in life. They will better understand their emotions and develop strategies to manage them better. A coach will first work with the client to clearly articulate their primary goal for the coaching engagement. It could be to secure the promotion, be a better people manager, manage a career transition or manage stress and difficult relationships. Depending on the chosen goal, the coach will work with the client to progress towards the primary goal by taking small action steps in that direction. I often invite my clients to envision what it would look like to them when they have achieved their goals and how they feel about it. It’s to see the reality of their goals as clearly as their current situation. Once they have seen it, they will then be more motivated to work towards it. You don’t need to have all the answers now, just the motivation and desire to take that first step. How do you help them to see their introversion as a strength, and not a weakness? People often mistake introverted traits as shyness or a sense of aloofness. Introverts are not always shy and yes, it is common to know a shy introvert. Introverts tend to find their energy from within, thinking about things, contemplating all aspects of a particular situation, sitting with an idea and considering all angles before going forward with it. Introverts may also be more sensitive to the people around them and have a tendency to be more empathetic. They are naturally geared towards building strong one-to-one relationships and enjoy deep meaningful conversations. If you think of all these traits, these are definitely not signs of weakness. These traits are definitely needed in positions of leadership and authority. In reality, we are all human beings and cannot be fitted in a neat, nice wrapped package. Some introverts may appear more extroverted and even the most introverted of people can have moments of extroversion, especially when they are speaking about things that they are passionate about. How do you help introverts with their visibility in the workplace? A lot of the work that I do with introverted professionals is to help them develop strategies to be more visible in the workplace. It could be that the individual has been advised by his/her manager that in order to step up into a leadership role, the senior management needs to know him/her. It could be that the nature of the role requires this person to engagewith a lotmore stakeholders. The starting point is to understand the reason for the person to want to be more visible and to get really clear on this reason. This will be the anchor that the subsequent coaching conversations will be based on. A common example is that an employee has been asked to network more as her job requires her to interact with other people from various departments in the organisation. When she hears the word “networking”, it puts her off and she ends up feeling that it is a chore. At times, when she is pressured to go to a networking event, she either feels resentful or anxious and ends up having a miserable time. If we worked together in a coaching engagement, I will explore with her why she feels so negatively about networking. It may come up that she feels that networking is very transactional and Bus i ne s s & Economy Finance Monthly. 24

demeans the relationships formed i.e. “What can I get out from the other person?”. We will then explore how she cannot view networking as that and move towards something that she can find purpose and meaning in. She may come up with a different word for it e.g., creating meaningful conversations. Once she is clear on her intention of creating meaningful conversations in these events, I’ll ask her to set a small achievable goal, e.g. speak to 3 people in the event and walk away knowing one to two meaningful things about them. More often than not, once the goal is met, the person is motivated to widen the scope of the goal and may even start to enjoy this process. I believe it always starts with an intention. For example, if an introvert is struggling to speak up in meetings where there are usually more outspoken individuals, the tendency is to sit back and say nothing. However, if the introvert goes into that meeting with an intention to speak for at least 2 minutes on a topic that he is passionate about, he will work out a way to share his point. It may entail speaking to the meeting organiser before the meeting and asking for airtime. It may entail getting his manager or a peer who will also be at the meeting to create an opportunity for him to speak. It also comes out to the person’s mindset. Ask yourself, “If I don’t share this, how will this impact the outcome of the meeting?”. “Who am I depriving this information from if I don’t speak up?” or “What benefit am I holding back if I keep silent?” So, start with an intention on how you want to approach the particular situation, plan beforehand what you need to do and approach it with the mindset that will help you carry out your intention. It will definitely get easier with practice! What are the most common diversity and inclusion areas that you help clients with? I’m also passionate about creating awareness of diversity and inclusion topics both in the individual professional and in their workplace. Some of the common diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) topics that I have coached my clients on managing diverse teams from different cultures and backgrounds located in various countries, understanding their own unconscious biases which show up in their interactions with others and dealing with challenges that arise from being different and not really fitting in. I came across an interesting analogy of what DEIB (B stands for belonging) from the many DEI literature that I’ve read is that of holding a party. Diversity is inviting all types of individuals to the party and equity is ensuring that there are no barriers or obstacles for these individuals to attend the party. Inclusion is making it possible for the attendees to take part in the activities of the party. Finally, belonging means everyone is able to feel relaxed and really enjoy the party as who they arewithout feeling uncomfortable or out of place. I believe that tackling this – how to make sure your employees feel like they belong to your organisation – is much more difficult than coming up with a DEI policy in your company. It will take a lot of open and honest communication with the people in your organisation to understand what belonging means to them and meet them there where possible. What are your thoughts on the future of coaching? I don’t think we can run away from the fact that technological advances will make significant changes to the way we coach. Just like how we have smart contracts for legal work, there are increasingly more apps that leverage artificial intelligence to provide general tips and advice on improving your mental wellness and creating emotional resilience. I also believe that AI will not take the place of the human element in coaching. That is also one of the reasons why I trained and am certified as a mentor coach because I believe in supporting my fellow coaches to continue to grow and enhance their coaching skills and competencies to remain relevant and impactful to the people they coach and support. I can see myself coaching for as long as I can create a positive impact on my coachees. That is my legacy – to leave positive ripple effects in the people I coach so that they can in turn make an impact in the lives of people around them and the communities they live in. “Introverts tend to find their energy from within, thinking about things, contemplating all aspects of a particular situation, sitting with an idea and considering all angles before going forward with it.” Finance Monthly. Bus i ne s s & Economy 25

Bus i ne s s & Economy Finance Monthly. 26

Finance Monthly. Bus i ne s s & Economy 27 Purchasing property in the UK is a common method used by serious organised criminals to launder the proceeds of criminal activity. The sheer size of the property market in the UK and the high value of property assets means that extremely large amounts of criminal funds can be “cleaned” in a single transaction. Joy Ighade, Founder and CEO of Alexander Jon Compliance Consultancy, which specialises in financial regulation, general compliance, and financial crime, gives her thoughts on why money laundering is so prevalent in the UK property industry and what steps it can take to tackle it. HOWTO MANAGE AML COMPLIANCE IN THE PROPERTY SECTOR Joy Ighade Founder and CEO of Alexander Jon Compliance Consultancy

Finance Monthly. 28 Bus i ne s s & Economy What is the impact of money laundering on the property industry and the wider UK economy? In reality, the full scale of money laundering throughout the UK property sector is unknown. However, Transparency International UK has been collating information on questionable funds being invested in UK property since 2016 and believes this figure currently stands at £6.7bn. Transparency International have identified 513 properties in the UK that have been bought with suspicious wealth - three of those properties have a combined value of more than £5bn. This is just a small proportion of the total proceeds of crime invested in UK property. Information obtained and affirmed by Pandora Papers, which comprised circa 12 million documents exposed secret dealings and hidden assets of the world’s richest and most powerful, in particular the revelation of secret owners of more than 1,500 UK properties with an estimated value in excess of £4bn worth of property assets purchased via offshore companies. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Why is the property industry so attractive to money launderers? Traditionally, property has always been viewed as a reliable form of long-term investment, and despite the current economic outlook, it remains a popular choice of investment – particularly for wealthy individuals with excess cash. Aside from genuine wealthy individuals, UK property attracts sophisticated criminals who need to disguise their proceeds of crime. Buying property is an easy way and means of money laundering while enabling criminal networks to continue to thrive. UK property can be bought by using offshore companies. Whilst Companies House now requires a certain amount of due diligence and information to be provided on the beneficial owner, this does not seem to be the case for companies registered overseas and especially in countries with well-known secrecy jurisdictions. The flip side to this is that the true purpose and origin of financial transactions remain unclear. Proper and accurate due diligence on property buyers must be conducted to ensure firms and banks know who they are dealing with and know the true origin of the funds. It is clear also from the number of fines meted out by some of the UK Money Laundering Supervisors that institutions are still falling short in this area. HMRC recently revealed that almost half of those falling foul of AML regulations are property firms. Why is the industry failing to meet their AML obligations? In direct response to the HMRC October 2022 headline - it focused on Estate Agents who either failed to register with the HMRC for AML purposes or the firm had registered but had failed to put in place adequate risk assessments and other relevant policies and procedures to ensure the firm met its required AML obligations. These offences attracted numerous fines and in one particular case a sentence of 120hrs unpaid community service. Until August 2022, it was perfectly legal for offshore companies to purchase property in the UK without providing details of the beneficial owner, which effectively allowed the beneficial owner to remain anonymous. “Traditionally, property has always been viewed as a reliable form of long-term investment, and despite the current economic outlook, it remains a popular choice of investment – particularly for wealthy individuals with excess cash.”

Finance Monthly. 29 Bus i ne s s & Economy However, the new Economic Crime (Transparency and Enforcement) Act 2022 requires overseas firms with property in the UK to register with Companies House by 31 January 2023. Aside from the above, there is a blasé attitude from a number of property firms that they believe they will never be caught out and therefore prefer not to engage in the required resource to ensure they abide by the UK AML regulations. Where such an attitude does not exist, it is usually a simple case of the firm not having the financial capability to employ the right individual to carry out the role or the firm believing they have adequate policies and procedures in place as well as the personnel - even if a little lacking. Is the government doing enough to support the property industry, and if not, what steps should it be taking? Firstly, it is important to be clear on the facts – the UK has in place Money Laundering Regulations which, depending on the type and category of the firm, it expects all firms to act in accordance with these regulations. The Regulations are UK statutes and therefore penalties are issued for noncompliance. The onus remains on each firm to ensure it operates within the regulations. These regulations alongside industry-wide guidance provide a framework within which firms are expected to conduct its business. The UK Government has recognised the need for further specific regulation where it is clear that the current regulation does not cater for certain scenarios or loopholes. To this end, the government has introduced a plethora of legislation and reforms and property firms should avail themselves of this information by employing competent personnel to ensure they are operating within the regulations. Many companies are investing in AML technology. Is it an effective solution for ensuring customer due diligence, record keeping and the reporting suspicious activity? Technology is positively impacting the economic world globally, and in most industry sectors it speeds up operations and efficiencies without impacting accuracy. Anti–Money Laundering technologies can play a valuable role in enabling property firms to tighten their policies and in flagging potential criminal activity, but such technology can only work effectively alongside experienced Compliance Professionals who have the capabilities to spot the warning signs and other potential red flags. The client due diligence process has come a long way in terms of digitisation. This is only set to improve and ensure every aspect in the CDD process is fully electronic. However, it seems that the young, disruptive and innovative financial institutions and firms are more successful in ensuring the CDD process is almost 99% electronic. In relation to record keeping, a lot of firms have automated their processes and have sought to go paperless where they are able. However, there are instances where it is still not fully developed and therefore firms should still make adequate arrangements for records that are not yet fully electronic. Many firms have sought to improve their own internal suspicious activity reporting moving from a more manual process, however, the ability to do this has depended on the firm’s financial resources to implement such electronic systems. In conclusion, there are many benefits in investing in AML technology, however, the scale to which this can be done will always depend on the scale and resources of the individual firm. If a property company is concerned that they are not doing enough to meet their AML obligations, what would you advise them to do? The first steps are recognising and acknowledging that there is an issue that needs to be rectified and that it is brought to the attention of the Board and Senior Management. The Board and Senior Management must ensure that it hires a dedicated Compliance Professional with sufficient seniority and independence to carry out the role effectively. The firmmust ensure the Compliance Professional is competent. The firm should seek to hire a competent individual / s who will carry out a number of tasks including ensuring there is a robust Financial Crime Framework & Compliance Strategy developed and implemented.

Legal Awards2023 FM VOTING NOW OPEN Click here or visit for more information Recognising the Legal Professionals and Law Firms that consistently provide solutions and sound legal advice for the Corporate Sector. Monthly Finance

Banking Financial Services 32. Deducting Difficulties: Introducing the Tax Technologist 4 Key Trends for the Finance Industry in 2023 Transform or Lose Competitive Advantage: The Pressure on Financial Services Top Tips on Financial Security in the Current Climate This is What You Need to Do to Inspire Talent in the Finance Team Current Trends in Lending 36. 44. 46. 40. 50.

INTRODUCING THE TECHNOLOGIST DEDUCTING DIFFICULTIES: Russell Gammon Chief Solutions Officer Tax Systems Bank i ng & F i nanc i a l Se r v i ce s 32 Finance Monthly.

With Making Tax Digital (MTD) for VAT now established and similar initiatives for Income and Corporation Tax on the horizon, the industry is embracing technology and digitalisation at pace and in ways it hasn’t done before. To remain compliant with MTD regulations, businesses will have to get on top of their data. In other words, they must understand it, know where the commonalities need to exist, and where data flows from start to finish. Unsurprisingly, this has led to growing calls within the businesses for expert Tax Data Professionals who are capable of locating, mapping and managing all relevant data. However, board-level personnel are increasingly recognising that it is the Tax Technologist, who will play a critical role in future-proofing organisations ahead of new developments and evolving tax rules. Combining exceptional impeccable collaborative skills with technical know-how, the Tax Technologist is the ultimate data and technology expert. These team members will play a pivotal role in enabling tax department teams – along with other business stakeholders - to work together and add value to the business. Finance Monthly. Bank i ng & F i nanc i a l Se r v i ce s 33

Dealing with the tax data conundrum – and more Just as GDPR legislation changed the rules of the game with regard to how organisations handle sensitive personal data, MTD is compelling tax and finance teams to focus on the importance of getting tax right the first time. That includes maintaining appropriate digital records of all transactions undertaken. Almost five years ago, GDPR propelled Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) into the boardroom. Here, their tech insights and grasp of data-related issues enabled organisations to review and streamline their systems, improve workflows, and implement standardised data security policies across the business. Now the Tax Technologist is set to play a similar mission-critical role for businesses, both large and small. Operating with a much wider remit than the Tax Data Professional, the Tax Technologist will focus on some key primary tasks. First of which will be eliminating data silos and ensuring that systems, together with all related processes, are integrated and streamlined. This will enable organisations to be head of the game when it comes to hitting HMRC’s new compliance deadlines. The Tax Technologist is responsible for delivering one key outcome: ensuring that key stakeholders in the tax department have full visibility of the data they need, and that this data is always accurate and correct. By eliminating the need to second guess or manually validate data held within their systems, the Tax Technologist is able to put automated systems in place. Using high-quality data that delivers unified insights, tax and finance professionals will be empowered to operate efficiently and at the top of their game. But that’s not all. As a standard bearer for the tax department, the Tax Technologist is able to highlight how digital transformation greatly expands the added value that tax teams can contribute to the business. “The Tax Technologist is responsible for delivering one key outcome: ensuring that key stakeholders in the tax department have full visibility of the data they need, and that this data is always accurate and correct.” Bank i ng & F i nanc i a l Se r v i ce s 34 Finance Monthly.

RkJQdWJsaXNoZXIy Mjk3Mzkz