The new regime introduced pursuant to the Investment Business
(Approved Managers)Regulations, 2012 is aimed at non-institutional
managers and advisors of BVI funds and provides a welcome
regulatory alternative to applying for a full investment management
or advisory licence under Part I of the Securities and Investment
Business Act, 2010 ("SIBA").
To qualify as an "Approved Manager" under the new
regime the investment manager or advisor must:
be a BVI company or limited partnership
act as manager or advisor to a private or professional fund
recognised under SIBA (which may include funds domiciled outside of
the BVI), a closed-ended fund domiciled in the BVI which has the
key characteristics of a private or professional fund or a foreign
fund investing substantially all of its assets in a BVI domiciled
satisfy the Financial Services Commission's (the
"Commission") fit and proper test
maintain, in the case of open-ended funds, aggregate assets
under management of less than US$400 million and, in the case of
closed-ended funds, aggregate capital commitments of less than US$1
file an application for approval not less than seven days prior
to the intended commencement of business
The new regime is cost effective (a US$1,000 application fee is
payable with an annual fee of US$1,500 thereafter) as well as
efficient, allowing the relevant fund manager or advisor to
commence business seven days after submission of its application
without having to wait for formal approval from the Commission.
An Approved Manager will be subject to less onerous on-going
regulatory obligations than a manager or advisor who holds a full
licence under Part I of SIBA but is still regarded as a regulated
entity and so subject to enforcement action by the
Commission. It will need to appoint at least two directors,
file an annual return with the Commission and prepare and submit
annual financial statements which need not be audited. The
Approved Manager will remain under an on-going duty to notify the
Commission of any changes to the information provided to the
Commission in its application for approval and of any matter which
has a material impact on the Approved Manager or its business.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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