On 13 June 2018, the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) published a consultation on corporate governance principles for large private companies (the Principles) and supporting guidance. The Principles are a voluntary set of corporate governance principles for large private companies developed by the Coalition Group, an industry group chaired by James Wates CBE (of family-business, Wates Group) and constituted by representatives from the FRC and various industry bodies including the British Private Equity & Venture Capital Association, the Confederation of British Industry, the Institute of Directors and the Trades Union Congress.
The UK has a well-established suite of reliefs designed to incentivise equity investment in companies in the early stages of their existence. This article focuses on developments in these venture capital schemes, particularly the Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS), the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) and Venture Capital Trust regime (VCTs) and recent trends and developments, with a particular focus on the changes introduced in the Finance Act 2018.
The latest proposals are designed to "ensure fund managers compete on the value they deliver" and act in the interests of investors (see our thought leadership piece).
By a number of measures, private equity transactions hit a post-financial crisis high in the UK in 2017. An abundance of dry powder and more relaxed debt terms from lenders, combined with the rates at which private equity sponsors are able to raise bonds and loans reaching all-time lows, has contributed to a busy 12 months for the market. This growth may also be in part attributable to private equity funds having become more comfortable with the new political landscape in the UK, as the dust begins to settle 18 months on from the Brexit referendum.
As the dust settles after last month’s Brexit vote, the smoke is only getting thicker with no clear visibility on the tough road ahead. However, is it really all doom and gloom? Or, seen through a wider context, is it a bitter short-term pill for a better long-term future? In this article, Siraj Ibrahim discusses the implications of Brexit, how this may result in the fulfilment of real Islamic finance, and how Islamic finance will not be significantly affected in the UK.
There has been much discussion about possible consequences for UK pensions should the public vote to leave the EU in June. We discuss the main strands of this debate, both legal and concerning the wider pensions environment, and start by confirming our view that Brexit would not mean an immediate change to the regulatory and legal arena of UK pensions.
Good or bad, European law has had a bearing on some of the most challenging themes of UK pensions law. In particular, for equal treatment and the valuation of benefits, as well as in the transactional sphere, EC legislation has had a marked influence on our domestic law.
AXA Investment Managers is an active, long-term, global, multi-asset investor focused on enabling more people to harness the power of investing to meet their financial goals. By combining investment insight and innovation with robust risk management, AXA IM has become the chosen investment partner of investors worldwide. Eurekahedge speaks to Larry Jones, Head of Portfolio Management, Alternative Solutions to find out more.
New rules effective from today in the U.K. are likely to have material impact on the tax treatment of payments by a fund to its U.K.-based management executives and service providers. The rules cover many areas of fund manager taxation that previously have not been specifically legislated for in the U.K. Given the haste with which the new rules were constructed and passed into law, it is not surprising that many situations are now being analysed with a degree of concern, in particular where the rules have had some unexpected, and in some cases, potentially negative effects.
Week two of the new year marked a significant step in the development of the European Private Placement Market. The Loan Market Association (LMA) launched template documents for use in European private placement transactions. The development of standardised documentation will improve the visibility and perception of the product and might provide the European private placement market with the potential to grow, in time, into a notable competitor to the US market.
The World Cup was fantastic and surpassed all expectations. It is a shame that England could not also have surpassed expectations. Amidst all the coverage of the event, there was one interesting article in the press, which did not cover the usual ground of match reports, injury updates and post-mortems of England’s or Brazil’s performance – it was an article on how hedge funds are investing in the football sector and will continue to do so. The interest generated by the World Cup is only likely to whet the appetite of such investors even further.
The Chancellor's Budget rhetoric emphasised the UK's commitment to being a world leader in the asset management sector: the Chancellor stating that "in places like Edinburgh and London, we have a world beating asset management industry. But they are losing business to other places in Europe. We act now with a package of measures to reverse this decline".
Despite its leading position as a western Islamic finance hub, the UK Islamic finance industry faces growing challenges including the lack of a lender of last resort and the absence of a UK sovereign sukuk. Jan Dinger explores.
Cyprus is a cost-effective EU, OECD, FATF and Euro Zone jurisdiction with the lowest corporate tax rate in the EU. Its business and commercial law is based on English law. It offers platforms for pursuing alternative investment strategies both through Cyprus UCITS and through Cyprus alternative investment funds. Cyprus has also reputed professionals regarding investment fund administration and taxation; e.g. 90% of Cyprus accountants hold one of the two top UK professional qualifications and have acquired significant experience in the financial centre of London.
While some Islamic financial institutions in the Middle East are under pressure due to the credit crunch, those in the UK are growing, recording an increasing number of customers as non-Muslims begin to view Islamic finance as a viable alternative.
“Business is very much unity and is building up. The corporate, wholesale and retail markets are optimistic about the future of Islamic finance in the UK. European Islamic Investment Bank is moving into private equity while European Finance House has been receiving strong support and been active in the real estate market. BLME (Bank of London and Middle East) has been successful in building assets and developing corporates and asset-based businesses,” said Gatehouse Bank chairman Richard Thomas.
What was considered by some as a niche approach to investment is developing into a set of sophisticated, integrated and influential strategies adopted by a wide range of investors. The public's broader awareness of sustainable development issues, and the growing number of initiatives encouraging greater corporate transparency and accountability on CSR issues, have supported demand for the creation of new SRI investment products.
The BVCA represents the vast majority of UK-based private equity and venture capital firms and their advisors. The UK private equity industry is the largest and most dynamic in Europe accounting for more than half of the whole European market, and is second in size only to the United States on the world stage. This means the BVCA is today the single most authoritative voice of the UK industry when speaking with the media or negotiating with government, Parliament, European Commission and Parliament, regulators and other statutory bodies.
Platinum Capital Management Limited is a London-based team of investment and asset management professionals and has affiliate offices in UK, Switzerland, Hong Kong and Dubai.
Mulvaney Capital Management is a London-based commodity trading advisor, regulated by the FSA in the UK and the CFTC in the US. The program is a long horizon systematic trend-capturing program allocating capital in all major sectors of the financial and commodity markets, explained by its Principal Paul Mulvaney, in an interview given to Eurekahedge.
We asked 16 managers, based around the world and overseeing absolute return Asia Pacific strategies, their views of where is the best location to establish a hedge fund. We gave each of them the same 12 questions (reproduced below), which centered on the investment process and capital raising. Their answers were remarkably similar, suggesting that there may be a clear formula which new, and arguably some established, managers should follow.