What is the opportunity?

Her Majesty’s government triggered the official withdrawal procedure of the United Kingdom from the European Union on 29 March 2017. In essence, this means that after the negotiations, the EU Treaties will cease to apply to the UK territories. While both sides repeatedly promised that the process would be smooth, there is already a noticeable turmoil in various industries and markets. The value of the Sterling against the dollar has fallen sharply, UK-based financial businesses consider moving to other EU cities, and US companies active in the UK market are planning moves to other European countries. Essentially, no one knows what the UK’s trade relationship with EU and non-EU countries will be.

Tough it has been promised that neither the UK citizens in the EU nor the EU citizens in the UK will suffer harm because of the UK’s exit from the European Union, companies started to revisit their existing HR polices and plans for relocation of their workforce. As the European Union’s remaining Member States authorized the Commission to lead the trade negotiations with the UK, speculations begun: will the divorce be settled first and then would the negotiations about access to the EU market start; how long can EU citizens stay in the UK without having to register or apply for visas; which markets and industries will be hardest hit by the changing quota or tax restrictions?
While much is to be seen and followed closely, companies of small, medium or big size needed to rethink their own exit strategies. Can they simply rely on force majeur in order to be able to relocate without succumbing to significant extra costs? When contemplating alternative scenarios, Eastern Europe often comes in mind but because of scarce intelligence of the local legal, tax and cultural situations, firms often fail to plan adequately.

Why CEE?

Romania and Hungary both have low labor costs, among the lowest five EU countries. An hourly wage in Romania, for example, is only 1/10 that of Denmark or Belgium. As for economic growth, Hungary is above the EU average, and Romania is the second fastest growing economy in Europe. With still relatively low prices, Hungary is home to the fastest growing property market, Romania is among the top, too.

What is the service?

In Soter & Partners, we offer a non-partisan, complex trade-related service to those companies, which are drawing up their post-Brexit strategy . We advise companies on matters of legal establishment, tax, accounting, and in general, running a company in Hungary and Romania, in two of the European Union’s easternmost Member States. In Brussels, we also monitor the negotiations process between the EU and the UK.

If such companies decide to come and invest in our region, we set up their local business and take care of their accounting and payroll needs.
If they aim at other EU Member States, through our network, we organize information sessions with local experts in different Member States.

Who are we?

We are partnership between Soter & Partners and Pál Belényesi. It brings together several well-known individuals in their fields. The joint venture works with a range of local experts, law firms, tax advisors and accountants in Romania, Hungary and Italy.
The venture is set by Dan Manolescu and Pál Belényesi, both with extensive experience in the Europe, the U.S. and Asia.

Dan joined Soter & Partners in 2001 as Tax Partner with an extensive experience in tax consultancy, gained in KPMG during 1997 - 2000. He holds a PhD in Economics, and a bachelor degree in Law. From 2007, he has been a Certified Fiscal Consultant, member of the Romanian Chamber of Fiscal Consultants, where curently also serves as President. Since 2008 he is a Certified Financial Auditor.
In January 2013 he was appointed Secretary of State in the Ministry of Public Finance where he led the efforts behind a major legislative revision enacted in January 2016 that restructured and simplified Romania’s tax codes for corporations and businesses and established new anti-fraud provisions. He returned in Soter & Partners’ team in October 2015 as Tax Partner.

Pál is a former European Commission and European Parliament employee, a company executive, who now works as a university professor and private consultant for European and American companies. He helped companies achieve their goals in Europe, Asia, America and Africa. He is also a skilled negotiator, leading and participating in multiparty negotiations across the globe. He has master and doctorate degrees in law and economics. He is a trained multicultural presenter and lecturer, who speaks and negotiates in five languages.

Your company should consider contacting us, if:

You are a company based in the UK that wants to develop a post-Brexit plan and that involves looking beyond the UK borders

You are interested in the CEE

You are a forward-looker and do not want to sit around to see economic absurdities unravel

You want to know what a region with one of the lowest labor costs and company taxes within the European Union can offer you

You want a tailored service not a duplication of briefing packs

You are cost-averse

What is our promise to you?

We work on the basis of established trust. We will not convince you of a solution if we do not fully believe in it. We will be transparent and honest: if your ideas would not be profitable from a financial and legal perspective in our region, we will tell you. We prefer initially short-term relationships built on trusts with satisfied clients over long-term contracts with disappointed partners.
We promise that you get a tailored service at significantly lower costs than most of the international giants ask you to pay.