Updated: Feb 26, 2020
This could be the headline of a great article about old school credit evaluation and how to avoid the risk of clients not paying their invoices. But in 2019 business risk comes in more shapes and sizes than ever before and bad actors are not only associated with the risk of bad debt. Saying “yes” to the “wrong” kind of persons, disguised as owners or managers makes your business vulnerable to a wide variety of risks, such as money laundering, hidden international trade transactions, or financing human trafficking, terror or fraudulent activities. More than ever, it is key to identify the ultimate beneficial owners (UBO) controlling the significant shares of a business, to avoid the risk of doing business with the “wrong” kind of people and risking long term damage to reputational as well as economic loss.
Governments and organizations throughout Europe are fighting to regulate and support prevention of these illegal activities, and one of the important elements is the transparency and availability of high quality Ultimate Beneficial Owner (UBO) data on businesses.
The good news is that quality UBO data is available for BIGnet members in Europe or, depending on the partner, will be in a short period of time.
Depending on the type of business, product or service involved, the consequences of failing to check the client’s beneficial ownership, can result in tough and extremely high fines, plus the loss of trust and position in the eyes of customers and the overall public.
Ownership data which always has been relevant for credit evaluation purposes now becomes equally relevant for compliance evaluation purposes. For International businesses facing both credit and compliance risk in Europe, it can be valuable to partner up with BIGnet members supporting valuable information for the daily “yes’s” and “no’s”, both in the credit and compliance arena.