EY Luxembourg cheers arrival of Rosheen Dries, tenured tax partner
With extensive experience in Managed Services for UCITS and alternatives, her vision is to transform the firm’s tax practice. Discover how in this interview with Christophe Wintgens, Wealth and Asset Management Leader.
In what context has Rosheen Dries been recruited?
Christophe Wintgens (CW): “In the wealth and asset management sector in Luxembourg, so many changes have occurred over the past few years that have made it absolutely clear that we need experienced professionals dealing with topics such as operational tax, fund and regulatory reporting. It is important now more than ever to address tax topics in the investment funds industry.
Rosheen has acquired deep experience in tax operations over the past 25 years, first at EY Germany and then across EMEIA. She has been committed to the tax industry for her full career, tackling topics including, tax compliance, customer and investor tax reporting, tax risk monitoring and governance as well as tax reclaims, among others.
We believe it is the right time for her to help us increase our market footprint within the tax space. We believe Rosheen has the skills and drive to accelerate meaningful change.
With the quick evolution of regulations, increased reporting requirements and digitalization, there are many challenging topics to tackle in the tax function. In which particular aspects of tax will you position yourself and your team?
Rosheen Dries (RD): “Taking these criteria and in addition the increasing demands of tax authorities on tax transparency into account, my focus will be on Managed Services, to relieve asset managers from non-core work, particularly in the space of operational taxes.
Due to the complexity of the increasing number of operational tax regimes, the required resources to manage tax processes, the historic underinvestment in technology as well as the requirement for teams to remain abreast of global tax developments, these criteria pose an operational risk and challenge to asset managers. To be the partner for asset managers by providing them with efficient high quality managed services with a technology enabled solution to manage data, produce the tax numbers and reportings as well as the oversight and the governance across the tax processes – that’s where my particular interests lie.
How do you think the tax profession, and more broadly speaking tax as a service, has changed in Europe within the past few years, and more recently since the turn of the decade?
RD: “In the past the tax profession required pre-dominantly tax technical skills. Today these skills alone are not sufficient to address current tax compliance requirements. What has changed the tax profession in recent years is in particular digitalization. We as tax professionals must understand all tax related compliance and operations processes and be able to work with large volumes of data. Understandably, our talent pool has to include people who understand processes, deploy data analytics capabilities and can work with emerging technologies (Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, etc.).
Where does tax function outsourcing sit in the agenda of asset managers and the c-suite?
CW: “Most c-suite are trying to focus on the core business. Over the last 15 years, not only the tax function, but all the control and reporting functions have spent too much time dealing with support services. These matters are becoming too time consuming and asset managers do not want to be in the driving seat. I believe the tax function is experiencing the same trend. The tax c-suite should be better enabled to focus on key structuring work on the asset class side, or on positioning from a worldwide finance and economic point of view. Operational and reporting tax elements should be performed by a firm like ours, as we have high quality professionals to ensure the work is appropriately managed and adequately covered.
RD: “I would just like to add that tax is very high on the agenda of every c-suite in particularly due to the potential reputational risk. I therefore see a demand for the bundling of services and outsourcing/co-sourcing them to a single service provider like us to reduce costs and improve governance and oversight of the operational tax process.