It’s no secret that I’m not a fan of the unsolicited approaches from financial services companies looking to get their paws on whatever money I have. No matter how many times I ask, and no matter how polite or downright rude I am with them I still get approached by some of the same companies time and time again.
Today I opened an email (from the Czech Republic) that started with the phrase “I hope you don’t mind me reaching out to you in this way, however, from your LinkedIn profile it appears that you spent some time working in the UK so I expect this will be relevant and interesting to you.“ from a Mark Steinbach, Head of Business Development, Magnitude Wealth Ltd.
Well, Mark in reply I do mind – a lot. Firstly, this is not the first time you spammed me with this garbage. Secondly, you clearly never read my reply to your first unsolicited email. As a reminder, just so we are clear, here it is for you to enjoy a second time around…
How about you not send me spam and just f**k off.
I have never requested information from you [as you claimed] nor would I have ever volunteered my email to you.
Also, as I have reputable and suitably qualified friends who are IFA’s and pension advisers I would NEVER consider trusting one damned penny to any idiot dumb enough to contact me with unsolicited emails.
I reiterate, f**k off and NEVER bother me again.
Now, to give you a fair chance to reply and protect whatever reputation you may have, with the help of a (suitably qualified) friend I have prepared a few questions for you. Here goes.
We have found a company that Peter Challenger (Managing Director of Magnitude Wealth Ltd) owns. It is called “North Bridge s.r.o.” and it appears on the Czech Business Register, There is a reference to a firm, for which Peter Challenger was a director, called “de Vere and Partners s.r.o” but this appears to have been liquidated in December 2017. “North Bridge” appears to rent out property, and we cannot find “Magnitude Wealth Limited” on the business register in the Czech Republic (which is where it is trading according to your email). Perhaps you could point us in the right direction?
Who owns “Magnitude Wealth Limited” and in which country is it registered? Where is your company registered to pay tax?
Can you clarify your comment, “Our advisers work in conjunction with Trafalgar International GmBH” on your website? What does that mean and who is providing the advice?
As your firm is not “Trafalgar International GmBH”, we are guessing that it may be an agent of Trafalgar International GmBH. If so, isn’t an agent (if staff not employed directly by Trafalgar International GmBH) supposed to be separately registered with both the German and Spanish regulators?
We could not find your company on the Czech National Bank Register. We did find “Trafalgar International GmBH” on the register as an insurance intermediary, but there was no evidence of a branch being registered there, only a notification of a service from Germany.
As we understand it, anyone providing investment advice in Spain needs to be registered with the CNMV, and “Trafalgar International GmBH” is not registered with the CNMV. The German Regulator seems to give only permission to sell insurance products.
Your website refers to structured products; these are derivative based investments. Do you have a licence to sell derivatives to residents in Spain?
To summarise, who is giving the advice and under what licence?
Finally, please confirm the qualifications your advisers hold that are relevant to investment and pension advice for expats with British pensions?
Should be interesting to see what response we get – if any (the link to this article has been sent in response to the email received).
One can only assume that a company operating in the territories they claim should be able to answer all of these questions to a level that would satisfy the relevant regulators of those countries.
As whenever we write about financial services, we strongly suggest that people consult with a qualified Independent Financial Adviser (the clue is in the title) before making any major decisions! Don’t risk your life savings, these decisions are far too important to trust them to salespeople with ties and/or vested interests.
If you want to look into this further you might be interested to see the Facebook page of this company (this page had 23 likes, but has now been removed)).
To put this article into context, here are a couple of other examples of financial services spam we have had to deal with in the past Pennick Blackwell and DeVere. Magnitude Wealth are just one of many, There are many others, but we’d never get anything else done were we to respond to them all individually!
Don’t even get me on to the Linked in requests (including a recent request from Mark Steinbach)!