Proper fund governance has long been championed by leading offshore law firm Conyers Dill & Pearman, which for the last decade has encouraged its hedge fund clients to hold at least annual directors meetings. Initially this was met with some resistance according to Robert Briant (pictured), Partner and head of Conyers' BVI office, who confirms that such resistance has softened over the last few years.
One of the reasons as to why the BVI introduced the Incubator and Approved Fund products in May 2015 was, partly, in response to the fact that fund launch numbers in the global hedge fund industry had started to steadily decline. Rising regulatory and compliance costs were hurting start-up managers and dissuading people from coming to market.
Circle Partners is an independent fund administrator with offices in the BVI, Cayman Islands, and across the EU, the Americas and Hong Kong.
Guernsey is marking the the 20th anniversary of the introduction of its Protected Cell Company (PCC) Ordinance on 1 February 1997, providing the island’s captive insurance sector with the first cell company legislation of its kind anywhere in the world.
Q&A with Geoff Ruddick (pictured), IMS Fund Services – You mentioned in your last article that ‘Governance is not a game’ – can you expand on what you meant by that statement?
By Ras Sipko (pictured), Koger USA – For the past four years, alternative fund managers with US investors have been coming to terms with the far-reaching effects of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act or FATCA. Some 60-plus countries have signed up to cooperate with the IRS in order to enforce FATCA and this year the compliance burden is set to grow yet again for international fund managers.
The Cayman Limited Liability Companies Law (`LLC Law') was formerly introduced on 8 July 2016 and is expected to be used for a broad range of structuring situations.
The US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act reporting cycle has been running now for two years. As such there is a good level of visibility in terms of how this tax reporting exercise needs to be done and most financial institutions are clear on the definitions used.
The Cayman Government is currently proposing legislative changes which would give CIMA additional powers to impose administrative fines on licensed and regulated individuals and entities. The Monetary Authority (Amendment) Bill 2016 seeks to amend the Monetary Authority Law and if passed will enable CIMA to impose a range of penalties from non-discretionary fines of USD5,000 for a minor breach up to USD1 million for a serious breach. CIMA would be able to impose cumulative fines of up to USD20,000 for a single minor breach.
As global asset management groups increasingly adopt digital platforms to connect with counterparties and investors in today's knowledge-based economy, the risks of cybersecurity threats are rising. Funds of all shapes and sizes are susceptible to fraud committed internally by employees or external criminal groups – hactivists, terrorist groups – which can have a potentially devastating impact on shareholders, oblivious to the risks. This could lead to investors losing part or all of their investment while ongoing criminal investigations and court procedures play out. As such, the Money Laundering Reporting Officer (MLRO) is becoming a vital role in the operations of investment funds.