Why UK professionals target expats: 5 Drivers

Why UK professionals target expats: 5 Drivers

Expats need accountants, lawyers, property consultants and investment advisors. We have found 5 drivers that are leading UK professionals to target the expat community; Serendipity, A strong value proposition, The digital revolution, Growing market and High margins.


I’ll get serendipity out of the way first. When our clients come into our offices to launch their programmes, I invariably ask “So how did you get into this market” or “Why Kenya?” By and large, the answer is “I have family there” or “I went on holiday there and I met a couple of people there who needed…………….” As with so many businesses chance is a key driver. However, the fact that you like to travel and are gregarious probably makes you suitable as an international advisor.

Value proposition

The familiarity of the UK and English drives people home. Trust is a key driver in commercial decisions, so playing on our well-regulated business environment and conversely the ‘bandit country’ the expat is living in, is a strong value proposition. In our opinion, you have to spell it out to the expat. Unfortunately, they are giddy with money, wrapped up in a ‘so good’ life style and often naïve enough to believe the well-oiled advisors preying on them. I was recently speaking to an IFA in the UAE who takes 6% upfront out of investments!

Digital revolution

These late 20s to early 40-year-olds are completely at home dealing with remote advisors. The global digital revolution is a relatively new phenomenon, allowing expats to be advised from anywhere in the world in the way they want it; ‘immediately, right now, instant delivery, 24-7’.

Growing market

According to the ONS and Finnacord, the ex-pat market globally is growing at about 2.5% – 3.4% per annum. With around 1m UK ex-pats in the EU alone. There may be a short-term blip in growth due to US and UK introspection, however, few commentators are forecasting anything but growth. Also, enterprise graduate recruitment campaigns are actively offering overseas assignments as a ‘right of passage’ for their aspiring executives.

Margins are high

In comparison to the margins earned by overseas advisors, those in the UK are paltry. However, according to our clients, their expat clients deliver good returns. Fee pressures are less and importantly expats like to deal remotely, partner contact is lower.

Finally, our position in this market is to create lead generation programmes to target expats.

Click here to pickup our expat lead generation pack.