Guernsey agribusiness fund becomes world's first 'regulated green fund'

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The world’s first regulated green fund has been registered in Guernsey as a Guernsey-domiciled agribusiness fund, the island’s regulator has confirmed.

The Cibus Fund, which launched last year, has become the first fund to be awarded the Guernsey Green Fund regulatory “kitemark” by the island’s regulator, the Guernsey Financial Services Commission, following the launch of the Guernsey Green Fund rules in July this year.

“This landmark places Guernsey well and truly at the forefront of the development of green finance,” said Dr Andy Sloan, speaking from Shanghai. Sloan was representing Guernsey as the head of financial sector strategy development for the island, at the AGM of the United Nations’ International Network of Financial Centres for Sustainability.

“It was a great pleasure to be able to announce this development at the event in Shanghai,” Sloan said.

The Cibus Fund is a private equity vehicle managed by London and Hong Kong-based private credit fund manager ADM Capital Europe LLP. It was its first Guernsey fund, investing in mid-market opportunities for sustainable food processing and production in Europe and Australasia-based companies operating in the international high-value food supply chain.

ADM Capital has a track record of investing in the agribusiness sector, looking to generate more food from fewer inputs and reduce the negative impacts of agriculture on the environment. It has followed a thesis-driven approach which shows that demand for high-value food in many of the world’s fastest-growing regions exceeds regional production and processing capacity.

Vistra Fund Services in Guernsey is administrator to the fund, while offshore law firm Carey Olsen has advised ADM Capital on Guernsey activities.

Guernsey is developing its specialist green finance product range in line with its position as the leading small international finance centre for green finance, and, as a specialist funds jurisdiction, has led on the development of green funds through the development of its regulated Green Fund rules.

Any Guernsey fund where 75% of its assets by value meet specified international green criteria, including investment in areas such as renewable energy, agriculture, waste, waste water and transport, can apply for the designation, which assures investors that their money contributes to initiatives that have positive environmental results, while being well regulated.

Dominic Wheatley, chief executive of Guernsey Finance, said: “The registration of our first Guernsey Green Fund has been eagerly anticipated, and is another milestone for us on our way to confirming our status as the leading specialist green finance centre.
“We believe this is a world first, and I’m sure this will be the first of many Guernsey Green Funds. Yet again Guernsey is pioneering product development in response to significant world need, and I’d like to pay tribute to Andy Sloan and the team involved in developing this world-leading product.”

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Christopher Copper-Ind

Christopher Copper-Ind is editor-in-chief of International Investment. Before this, he was editorial director of The Business Year, from 2014 to 2017.

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