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French, Italian Family Office Associations Spread Their Wings

Tom Burroughes, Group Editor , London, 26 January 2021

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Family office organisations in two countries are joining forces and building an international body covering "every country." One of the figures leading the entity has led Sandaire, the UK-based multi-family office sold to Schroders last year.

Family office associations in France and Italy are joining forces to build what is called the International Federation of Family Offices. The group said that it “seeks to bring together national family office associations from every country.”

The organisation is being created by AFFO - the French Family Office Association - and AIFO – the Associazione Italiana Family Officer. They said that the IFFO aims to unite professional associations in order to provide a framework to promote exchanges, best practice, sharing insights and opportunities, and to understand how the family office profession is carried out in each country. 

Among the IFFO’s board members are Alex Scott, creator of the UK-based Sandaire family office, which became a multi-family office, later sold to Schroders last September. He is now president of Schroders Global Family Office Services. At the IFFO, he is a director.

AFFO said it met with its Italian counterparts after having met a number of such bodies around the world, and sat down with the group in Milan in November 2019. Following that meeting they decided to meld the organisations. They comprise more than 50 family office members in total.

This news service has asked the groups what countries are included under the IFFO umbrella, and will update in due course.

“IFFO's mission will therefore be to facilitate both an international connected network of professionals involved in the activities of the family office and also to facilitate interactions with related or neighbouring professions, all in the interest of delivering best-in-class guidance and service to families,” Jean-Marie Paluel-Marmont, president of IFFO and AFFO, said.

The new association said it wants to encourage and allow a country’s family offices to come together to create a national association, if one does not exist. 

Each national association that so wishes can join the new entity with consent of the board of directors currently composed of two French members, two Italian members and one English member.

Besides Scott, as mentioned earlier, here are other board members:

Jean-Marie Paluel-Marmont, president of the IFFO (president of AFFO since 2012). For 20 years (until 2013), Jean-Marie Paluel-Marmont led a listed family company, Compagnie Lebon, specialising in private equity, real estate and hospitality. He began his career in banking in France and England (CIC, SG Warburg & Co, director of the European Department at J Sebag & Co). From 1974, after returning to France, he managed the wealth management business of the Paluel-Marmont Group with the chairmanship of Paluel-Marmont Banque until its sale to Crédit National (now Natixis) in 1997. Paluel-Marmont regularly lectures on the wealth and investment issues of family offices and family businesses.

Bernard Camblain, treasurer of the IFFO (founder and honorary president of AFFO). After studying business, economics and sociology, Bernard Camblain spent most of his career in private banking before specialising in the family office. Founder in 2001 of the Association Française du Family Office, he chaired the association until February 2009 and was appointed honorary president on this date. Camblain took part in the creation in 2003 and the development of Meeschaert Family Office, of which he is now vice-chairman of the Supervisory Board. He is also the author of numerous articles on the family office and the book Family office et famille [Family Office and Family] published in August 2008. From 2000 to 2013, he was also a legal expert in finance approved by the Paris Court of Appeal, and he is now an approved judicial mediator.

Fadrique de Vargas Machuca, vice president of the IFFO (vice president and head of the AIFO Academy). For over 20 years, Fadrique de Vargas Machuca has supported top international organisations, consulting firms, and financial institutions both as a consultant and independent trainer for assignments aimed at improving communications skills, problem solving, and leadership. Her experience in designing and running training programmes, combined with her project management skills, led her to join AIFO - Associazione Italiana Family Officer- and to found the AIFO Academy. In 2016, she was named vice president of AIFO. She is currently a visiting professor with the UCSC (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore) and with the ISPI (Istituto Superiore di Politica Internazionale) where she teaches communications techniques to graduate and undergraduate students.

Emanuele Giangreco Biancheri, secretary general of the IFFO (head of international relations of AIFO). Emanuele Giangreco Biancheri is responsible for institutional and international relationships. He is co-founder of Family Strategy Srl, with a particular focus on wealth management projects and intergenerational continuity in family businesses. Previously he had senior management positions in the consulting firm Arthur D Little.

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