Risk Advisory Services
Being proactive to risks is a key differentiator between those businesses that thrive and those which struggle. Bridge’s Risk Advisory practice provides expert guidance and subject matter expertise in the field of risk management. Our team regularly assist clients to anticipate, detect, and respond to an array of risks which could impact their business model negatively. We also guide our clients in dealing with emerging risks and the impact these will have on the long-term sustainability of business and operations.
At Bridge we specialize in guiding our clients to build a forward-looking risk management framework which takes into account not only the financial aspects of risk management but also the intrinsic risks to the operations of the business. Our main service offerings include assistance with the following:
Assessment and management of credit, market, liquidity, and operational risk
Risk modelling, back-testing and model validation, Bespoke stress testing and scenario analysis
Compilation of regulatory reporting, and drafting and/or review of ICAAP/ILAAP documents
Drafting and implementation of risk monitoring and risk appetite frameworks, risk registers, policies and manuals
Business Advisory Services
Businesses are driven by internal and external factors which lead to continuous changes in priorities, strategy, goals and objectives. Bridge’s Business Advisory practice is focused on assisting clients to navigate smoothly throughout these cycles of change and other difficulties, such as COVID-related distress. Bridge’s team comprises subject matter experts who are seasoned entrepreneurs and have a wealth of experience in setting up and running successful businesses. Bridge offers a suite of tailored solutions adaptable to the unique state of affairs of our clients. The following are the main areas where our subject matter experts can assist:
Carrying out independent business SWOT analysis to identify strengths and opportunities and mitigate weaknesses and threats
Assistance for restructuring of business operations and processes to achieve efficiency and growth, including business valuations and scenario analysis
One-stop shop in relation to Mergers & Acquisitions and advice thereon
Raising of finance for corporates, ranging from bank borrowing and the structuring of such instrument, preparation for bond issues and also preparation for IPOs
Malta has established itself as a reputable international financial services centre, due to the jurisdiction’s flexible legal and regulatory environment in line with EU regulations and directives. Malta boasts a very competitive tax regime and an extensive and ever-growing double taxation treaty network. Furthermore, rent for high-quality office space is cheaper than most Western Europe. These factors, together with a highly skilled and English-speaking workforce have led to companies establishing or relocating their business to Malta.
The Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA), the single regulator for financial services in Malta is an approachable and proactive regulator, which facilitates an efficient and inexpensive licensing process. A license obtained from the MFSA allows the company to benefit from the possibility of operating throughout the EU in accordance with EU passporting procedures.
Bridge can assist in the licensing process from start to finish; from preparation for the initial meeting with Competent Authority, drafting of the Business Plan, assisting with Financial Projections, preparation of necessary policies and procedures, addressing feedback from the MFSA once the application is submitted, and provide ad hoc assistance in the setting up of the entity until license is in hand and company can start operating.
The development and establishment of a robust compliance framework is a critical task for any entity to secure the soundness and appropriateness of its business. The entity must ensure that all its internal policies are robust and sustainable to be able to respond effectively to changes in legislative frameworks.
The scope of regulatory compliance – both at locally and EU level – has dramatically increased and continues to expand. Regulatory penalties have also increased over time and tighter scrutiny is being applied across all regulated sectors. Most importantly, breaches in compliance matters can lead to irrecoverable reputational damage, which impacts the going concern of a company.
Our team of experienced compliance specialists have practical knowledge of the various regulations, guidelines and rulebooks regularly published and updated by the MFSA This allows us to provide our clients with peace of mind that their operational set-up is compliant and will remain compliant with the latest regulatory changes.
Bridge can provide tailored advice on regulatory matters and the impact of new and changing regulations – such as gap analysis on business operations – to a range of regulated entities including: credit & financial institutions, payment institutions & EMIs, investment firms, corporate service providers.
Over the past years, the demand for higher standards of Corporate Governance has been a priority for regulatory bodies such as the MFSA. Good corporate governance is crucial to ensure that companies operate transparently, efficiently and effectively, and fosters mutual trust with stakeholders and the general public.
Bridge can assist in providing best practice guidance to regulated or listed entities on topics such as:
Suitability of Board composition and members (executive and non-executive members)
Efficiency and transparency of internal reporting lines; Conflict of Interest issues
Relations with shareholders and other key stakeholders
Training and Professional development for directors and management
Bridge can review the appropriateness of existing governance structures, as well as assist in creating an effective corporate governance framework for newly established companies, thereby ensuring compliance with the latest European and Maltese regulatory frameworks applicable to your business.
Financial Crime Compliance
Gaps in firms’ conduct and in prudential arrangements often pave the way to financial crime risk, making firms more vulnerable targets for criminals seeking to disguise proceeds of crime or to support the financing of terrorism. The associated risks to business and financial institutions are very real and can lead to regulatory fines, reputational damage, loss of customer base and even imprisonment.
At Bridge we help our clients identify and assess such risk, respond to evolving regulation, prepare for and react to on-site visits by regulators, and enhance their overall financial crime management programme to become proactive in the fight against financial crime.
Our services include:
Assessing AML/CFT operating model, client risk assessment methodology
Reviewing, revising, or drafting policies and procedures
Gap analysis in preparation for onsite regulatory visits & developing remediation programmes
Carrying out independent KYC remediation of client portfolios
Designing and delivering AML/CFT training
Prepare due diligence reports on PEPs, HNWIs, complex corporates and high-risk potential investors
Provide tailored advice on due diligence requirements to open bank accounts with Maltese and EU credit institutions
Advice on the adequacy of the onboarding and ongoing monitoring tools, and internal reporting and record keeping processes