Geoff Gates launches European aircraft escrow service


Geoff Gates, the brother of Sean Gates who founded Gates & Partners, a London aviation law firm, has launched Securus, a new European escrow account service.

Geoff Gates, the brother of Sean Gates, who founded Gates & Partners a London aviation law firm, has launched Securus, a new European escrow account service.

Securus hopes to attract European, Middle Eastern, African and Asian customers by offering a time zone that is more convenient than US escrow companies. Escrow accounts hold deposits until deals are completed.

Securus started marketing its services in April and hopes to close its first deal soon.

“We have had a lot of interest from brokers and charter companies in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Australia,” says Gates.

One of the biggest start-up costs is the professional indemnity insurance, which was arranged through Lloyds of London. Gates & Partners is providing legal advice and has written the terms and conditions that all clients need to sign and agree to. Securitas’ documentation is governed by English law.

Gates says that one of the things the conditions are designed to stop are traders conducting back-to-back transactions.

Securus has an agreement with a triple-A rated bank, but is also engaged in talks with others. Each client has its own deposit account. It offers accounts in dollars, Euros and sterling.

Gates worked in information technology before launching Securus.

Insured Aircraft Title Service (IATS), the largest business aviation escrow account provider, is based in Oklahoma City near the US FAA. IATS says it can provide a service for any time zone and offers all clients free telephone calls and access to international accounts. It handles dollars, Euros, sterling and Japanese Yen. JPMorgan provides accounts for IATS.

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