ICP was originally founded to act on behalf of investors in development projects that were failing. We provided a single vehicle through which compensation could be pursued and opportunities exploited. In particular, we brought together large numbers of previously unconnected individual investors, allowing them to act in each case as a single body of substance which could not only influence but, to a large extent, control events. Members of our syndicates either recover investments or make profits - we don't.
Strength in Numbers
Our core strength lies in our ability to identify and communicate with large groups of investors with common interests, perhaps in an existing project or with similar investment goals. By bringing together individual investors and partnering with the best sources of expertise, whether it be legal, financial or management, we can transform a fragmented community into an efficient and productive investment vehicle.
Costs and Savings
The costs of establishing and managing a syndicate can be substantial. However, whilst each project is different and it is difficult to generalise, we will typically only seek to recover our costs from the proceeds of a successful outcome. This means that we would rarely ask syndicate members for any payment. In most cases, it is necessary to engage (at least) a legal representative but any such engagement is between the lawyer and the individual member and any legal fees are payable directly to the lawyer, not to us.
Furthermore, because we can negotiate group rates for professional and other services, we can usually achieve a significant reduction in the up-front costs that the individual investor would otherwise have to face. In short, syndicate members can anticipate better returns, greater security and lower costs than they are likely to achieve as individuals.
When you participate in an Investment Syndicate, your capital is not deposited with ICP. The company will either (on request) arrange escrow facilities, which remain under the control of the participating investors, or the investors may make their own arrangements.
It is important to note that ICP does not control syndicate activities. Whilst we provide support, guidance and the operating infrastructure, it is the syndicate members themselves who make the investment decisions and ultimately determine strategy.
ICP is a private limited company owned by 100+ property investors. Each shareholder / director is an active syndicate member. Although the company was incorporated in April 2010, activities began in 2008, initially operating as a group of collaborating investors.
We are not a services company. Our aim is to build syndicates in which we can all participate and enjoy increased returns with better security. The company operates on a strictly not-for-profit basis and does not pay dividends to its shareholders. All gains are distributed to syndicate members.
When you invest in a new property it is normally through an agent or some form of intermediary. If it is a leisure property / holiday home, the agent's fees will typically be at least 10% of the purchase price (we have seen commissions of up to 30%) – this is taken straight off the top from your deposit.
The developer / promoter will expect to make a margin of 25% to 30%. The remainder will be paid to the actual construction company and it is in the promoter's interests to keep construction costs to a minimum, which can adversely affect quality.
In summary, the actual cost of construction – what gets paid to the builder – is likely to be around only 60% of the price you have paid.
This typical scenario has one overwhelmingly clear characteristic – there is no-one who is motivated to act in your interest. All other parties earn more by delivering less and as an individual you are probably powerless to improve matters.
ICP is a not-for-profit company. It exists purely as a vehicle through which each syndicate can act as a unit, giving individual investors the opportunity to work together to a common end. The company is owned entirely by investors and was created for this purpose. For more information, click here.