The 'Cayman Islands Hedge Fund Services 2016' special report comprises 10 separate articles listed below, these can be read individually or as a sequence.
It's safe to say that the Cayman Island Government's in-tray is probably rather full at the turn of the year. Two major developments are in train, both of which are set to further enhance the jurisdiction's reputation. The first of these developments is the impending introduction of a new legal vehicle – the Cayman Islands limited liability company ("LLC"), which is expected to be brought into force in early 2016 (likely March or April).
By Chris Humpries (pictured), Stuarts Walker Hersant Humphries – The Cayman Islands is the principle offshore jurisdiction for hedge funds and mutual funds and seeks to retain its status by implementing an innovative legislative and regulatory regime and by continuing to have an absence of taxation. Hedgeweek Global Awards 2015 declared The Cayman Islands the best hedge fund services jurisdiction. Given the historic success of the Cayman Islands as a fund domicile, it also boasts the presence of sophisticated and professional service providers who are knowledgeable in the nuances of the fund industry.
Geoff Ruddick (pictured), an independent fund director and head of funds for International Management Services, sheds some light on the topical subject of ‘Split Boards’ – engaging independent directors from different fiduciary firms.
By Ashley Gunning (pictured) & Charlotte Beales-Hart – Commentators to the hedge fund industry agree that the fund administration landscape has been altered significantly by the mergers and acquisitions activity of the last few years. The consolidation of larger institutional services providers in this space, along with the exit of some smaller administration shops, has naturally flowed through to impact the industry in the Cayman Islands.
The Cayman Islands is preparing to introduce a new vehicle, the Cayman LLC, in response to growing demand among U.S. fund managers and attorneys. The Cayman Islands published a bill for a new stand-alone LLC law on 18 December 2015 and according to Hayden Isbister (pictured), Partner at Mourant Ozannes (Cayman Islands), the expectation is that it will be approved by the Cayman Government and enacted in early 2016.
ICG Management Limited ('ICG') is an independent director services provider. It was established in 2006 by Ralph Woodford (pictured) and Andrew Galloway. Along with Galloway and Woodford, the firm's two other directors, Brad Cowdroy and Greg Link, ICG provides director services to offshore funds.
With more consolidation expected in 2016 within the hedge fund administration space, those that thrive and survive will likely be ones with a strong reputation, a robust operating model that is able to support managers of all shapes and sizes, and a clearly defined multifarious revenue stream.
The debate around appropriate corporate governance continues with institutional investors, in particular, seeking greater insight into the role, responsibilities and skill sets of those appointed to the boards of corporate funds.
Susan Lock (pictured) is a partner in the investment funds team at Campbells, a leading Cayman Islands law firm which has been established for over 45 years, advising on both Cayman Islands and British Virgin Islands law.
The Cayman Islands Government published The Limited Liability Companies Bill, 2015 on 18 December 2015 which, when enacted, will provide for the introduction of a new Cayman legal vehicle, the Cayman Limited Liability Company (LLC). The draft legislation closely aligns the Cayman LLC to the United States' Delaware LLC model which will mean that the new structure will be instantly recognisable to the US market. This is a significant development for Cayman.