The Central Bank of Bahrain has granted a licence to Bermuda-based Apex Fund Services to establish operations in the Gulf emirate, its second office in the region, just weeks after the fund administrator announced the establishment of a subsidiary in Malta.

Apex is a privately-owned provider of fund administration and related services to offshore funds and companies. Established in Hamilton, Bermuda in 2003, it has USD5.5bn in assets under administration and 60 staff in nine offices worldwide.

'Bahrain is a leading financial centre in the Middle East, which offers the necessary infrastructure, regulatory framework, and cost-effective environment needed for us to continue to provide the highest level of service to our clients across the Gulf region,' says Peter Hughes, managing director of Apex Fund Services in Bermuda.

'Having been the first regulated fund administrator in Dubai [in July 2006], it was only logical for us to expand our presence in the Gulf region by opening an office in Bahrain.'

Shaikh Mohammed bin Essa Al-Khalifa, chief executive of Bahrain's Economic Development Board, says: 'We are very pleased to welcome such a dynamic and growing business as Apex Fund Services to Bahrain. We are committed to supporting our advancement as a leading regional hub for fund administration. Apex's decision to locate here is a key endorsement of that strategy.'

Apex Fund Services (Bahrain) is due to begin operations in Manama this month under the leadership of Craig Roberts, managing director of Apex Dubai and Nicolas Angio, who joins Apex from Bisys Hedge Fund Services.

The Bahrain office will be able to provide daily, weekly and monthly valuations to traditional funds, hedge funds and private equity funds and will accept Arabic-language subscription and redemption documents, as well as offering expertise in Shari'ah compliant products and providing web-based reporting solutions.


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