Guernsey has stepped up the promotion of its finance industry to
counter the effects of the global economic downturn.
Guernsey Finance – the promotional agency for the
Island's finance industry – has led a series of
initiatives in London during the past two weeks including briefing
trade media journalists, hosting its own seminar on Guernsey funds
and exhibiting at a leading international legal conference.
Peter Niven, Chief Executive of Guernsey Finance, said:
"Guernsey has been steadily building up the promotion of its
finance industry during the past few years. Global economic
conditions have taken a turn for the worse but that does not mean
we should now slow our marketing activity. In fact quite the
reverse is true. This is precisely the time when we should be
showing that Guernsey is not just a 'fair-weather' friend
and so we have stepped up our feed of positive messages to key
decision makers in cities like London – the centre which
is our principal source of new business – so that we are
in pole position to gain business when confidence returns and the
markets pick up."
Mr Niven spent two days in London briefing more than a dozen
trade media journalists from titles such as Reuters Investment
International, Private Banker International, CFO
Europe, Financial Director and Legal
Business so that through their publications they could provide
key introducers of business with updates on the latest developments
Guernsey Finance hosted a seminar on the Island's new funds
regime on Thursday 5 March at the America Square Conference Centre.
It featured panel of Guernsey and UK fund experts chaired by Chris
Russell from the Association of Investment Companies (AIC) and
comprising: Sean Cheong from Guernsey law firm Collas Day; John
Clacy of Deloitte; and William Saunders from London law firm
Stephenson Harwood. The event was followed by a drinks reception,
sponsored by Kleinwort Benson.
"This was very well attended with more than 100 people
present and including a strong cross-section of London lawyers. The
presentation was very well received, the question and answer
session was lively and the drinks reception provided an extremely
valuable networking opportunity for UK delegates and practitioners
from Guernsey's funds industry," said Mr Niven.
Gus Black, Partner, Dechert, said: "I always think of
Guernsey for private equity. There's clearly the potential to
go into other things as well. They have got a more coherent funds
regime that they can now start to promote. So much comes down to
what is perceived by investors to be a jurisdiction that they are
Guernsey Finance also exhibited earlier this week at the
International Bar Association (IBA) 10th Annual International
Conference on Private Investment Funds. Industry members assisting
on the stand were Gavin Farrell (Ozannes), Christopher Anderson
(Bedell Cristin) and Ray Page (IAG).
Mr Niven said: "This conference came to us very highly
recommended and it certainly enabled us to build on our trip to New
York earlier this year by providing another opportunity to educate
and spread positive messages about Guernsey to leading US
Guernsey Finance has also this week been exhibiting at the
property conference MIPIM and is preparing for a further trip to
China and a first to India during April.
Mr Niven added: "The trips to China and India during April
are very important for the ongoing development of the Guernsey
brand in these new markets but it is also important during these
economic conditions to focus on maintaining profile within those
centres which have traditionally been the main introducers of
business so that flows come through when market conditions improve
in the future."
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