The last few months have been a flurry of activity for Cordium. In December 2013 it acquired Sigma Partnership, a London-based compliance and accounting firm. This was followed by the acquisition of HedgeStart in January 2014, a multi-service provider to the hedge fund industry. Then last month Cordium acquired Zodiac Advisory Services, a Malta-based provider of compliance, risk, accounting and governance services.
“We’ve integrated the former HedgeStart compliance team into Cordium’s existing compliance team and added the former HedgeStart services to our offering. We now have the ability to offer guidance and help for clients who need tax – both personal and corporate – accounting, payroll and compliance services all under one roof,” comments Stephen Burke (pictured), Managing Director at Cordium EMEA.
Burke comments that implementing compliance software solutions is a key initiative for 2014, particularly in light of the fact that European managers need to become fully AIFMD-compliant by 22nd July 2014.
“We anticipate launching an AIFM software compliance program during the summer. This will combine our state-of-the-art technology with our up to the minute compliance intellectual property to help AIFMs manage their obligations under the directive. Increasingly, Cordium solutions will be delivered by their consultants via our software platform” explains Burke.
The AIFMD has certainly been a massive area of regulatory advisory work for Cordium, which, through its offices in London, Hong Kong, Malta and three locations across the US, is perfectly placed to support hedge fund managers running both EU and non-EU funds.
Cordium has, over the last two years or more, developed an effective AIFMD solution for clients that breaks the directive down into constituent parts.
“We try to define the solution that the industry is going to need and then create the documentation and support for that solution so that when a client comes to see us we can talk to them about how to get from A to B not only with a roadmap but with everything they’ll need along the way. A fully provisioned journey as it were.”
Different members of the Cordium team take responsibility for tracking each part of the Directive, understanding what needs to be done and then developing the documentation support (collateral) that clients need to demonstrate compliance when they commence their AIFM registration process with the FCA.
“This remains a significant part of what we are doing. Not only have we been developing AIFMD collateral but also holding regular events to help our clients plan and prioritise,” confirms Burke, adding:
“Another area in which we’ve provided significant help is in risk management. We have a team of portfolio risk management specialists who are delivering risk management services on a daily basis for our Mirabella clients. This puts us in a good position to help people look at their own risk management requirements.” Mirabella Financial Services is Cordium’s hosted regulatory platform.
“We can fill the gaps in documentation and that helps to serve a dual purpose: firstly, it helps pass the AIFMD inspection from the FCA and secondly it puts the manager in a better place with respect to investor due diligence.”
On winning this year’s award, Burke adds: “It is always gratifying to receive this sort of external accolade. To know that clients continue to trust us to guide them through this challenging regulatory landscape is the best reward that we can ask for.”