Alternatives lead Jersey funds rise following AIFMD sign-off

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The number of Jersey-registered alternative investment fund managers marketing into Europe through national private placement regimes under AIFMD has continued to rise consistently through the first half of the year.

According to a new report by the Jersey Financial Services Commission, as of June 2016, 115 alternative investment fund managers had been authorized in Jersey to market into Europe, up by 11% compared to December 2015.

In a statement released by Jersey Finance, the report highlighted that over the same period, the number of Jersey alternative investment funds being marketed into Europe through private placement regimes stood at 251, a 9% increase.

The report comes shortly after the European Securities and Markets Authority recommended on July 19, as reported, that Jersey should be among those ‘third countries’ granted an AIFMD passport.

The latest figures for Jersey’s investment funds sector also highlight that Jersey’s funds industry continues to grow, up to its second highest level since 2008, the NAV of assets under administration rose to £228.4bn in the first quarter of 2016.

Alternative asset class

Geoff Cook (pictured above right), chief executive of Jersey Finance pointed to the rise in alternative asset class, as to one of the main reasons for the increase as well as strong performances in the private equity and real estate asset classes.

“It’s clear that the alternative fund management community is finding appeal in the optionality and certainty of the European market access Jersey is able to offer,” said Cook. “The potential for an AIFMD passport in the future is giving managers real confidence in Jersey’s long-term future as an alternative funds domicile.”

Joint consultation

Earlier this week, as reported, the Government of Jersey and the JFSC launched a joint consultation this week aimed at enhancing Jersey’s funds regime. Jersey Finance said that the consultation seeks to simplify and rationalise numerous aspects of Jersey’s funds environment, with the paper confirming the intention to introduce new products to the market.

These are anticipated to include a new manager-led Jersey registered alternative investment fund (JRAIF). The JRAIF will be supervised by the JFSC by proxy as it will be the relevant AIFM who will be responsible for ensuring the fund’s AIFMD compliance. The consultation also provides detail around a proposed new universal definition of a ‘Professional Investor’ and consolidation across certain fund types.

‘Clearer, simpler and more streamlined’

Mike Byrne, chairman, Jersey Funds Association, added: “As a jurisdiction, we recognise that we need to continue to enhance our funds environment in a new regulatory landscape and this latest consultation forms a significant part of that.

“As well as making Jersey’s regime clearer, simpler and more streamlined, it also demonstrates that the jurisdiction is committed to bringing innovative products, such as the manager-led registered fund product, to the market.”

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Gary Robinson

Commercial Director, Head of Video at International Investment.