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JFA News
Thursday
13
February 2020

Survey highlights positivity and opportunities for innovation

At the end of last year, we presented the findings of our second annual JFA members survey – a project that will be instrumental in informing the organisation’s and our industry’s direction and strategy this year and beyond.

Exploring key opportunities and issues for Jersey’s funds industry, the findings painted a generally positive picture as far as the sentiment of practitioners is concerned, and their perceptions of Jersey as a specialist alternative funds jurisdiction.

Amongst its key findings, for example, were that the industry’s approach to the key macro issues were largely optimistic. On Brexit and new economic substance rules, attitudes were balanced but largely positive, with over 80% of respondents saying Brexit would be neutral or increase business and around three quarters saying the same about substance rules.

Members were also very positive in terms of their overall growth outlook for the year ahead, with 84% saying they were confident or very confident of growth over the coming five years, a significant increase from last year.

These responses tally with the performance we saw in our industry over 2019, with NAV figures reaching new record highs of £342bn and private equity in particular being the stand out performer.

We’ve also seen asset managers continuing to commit to relocating to and establishing a presence in Jersey, which is a huge positive in light of the economic substance rules introduced last year, whilst the number of managers making use of private placement through Jersey and into the EU reflects the high regard in which Jersey is held for straightforward, seamless market access.

We really shouldn’t underestimate just how positive the outcome of Jersey’s work around the key issues such as Brexit and substance have been, or just how significant the recognition Jersey received from the EU almost exactly a year ago was for our industry – it signposted that, without doubt, as a jurisdiction we are serious about cooperation and global standards, and that has translated into good business flows.

The fact that practitioners are confident that Jersey can maintain this growth trajectory against what continues to be a challenging global environment is hugely encouraging.

Future

But that’s only really half the story, because what really stands out from the survey findings is that, despite being so positive about the future, our industry is not complacent and is pragmatic and ready to find ways to continue to enhance our proposition and hone our vision to provide the perfect ecosystem for cross border alternative funds – conscious that competition is very real and that the environment around us continues to change.

As an industry, we are very clear that maintaining growth requires a commitment to innovation, continuing to source the best talent, engaging with stakeholders, and differentiating ourselves through service quality, ease of doing business and stability.

In respect of technology, for instance, the survey indicated a clear trend, with over 56% of respondents saying that they had employed automated technology over the past year. That sort of investment is impressive, and will be pivotal in meeting the needs of alternative managers in the coming years in areas like cyber security, reporting and data management – around 95% of respondents said they considered automation will have a moderate or significant impact on them over the coming five years.

Meanwhile, there’s a real appetite to back product development – around three quarters of member firms said they would be willing to contribute ring-fenced fees to the regulator in order to fund product development. Enhancing onboarding procedures for new clients came out particularly strongly in this respect, rather than bringing new products to market – through automation and online portals, and by looking again at significant simplification and clarification of Jersey’s AML regime.

There were also a number of calls amongst respondents to look at ways to further enhance Jersey’s private placement regime and revisit third country passporting, whilst respondents also pointed to the need to be more proactive in meeting the demands of and responding to the needs of an industry that is increasingly engaging on the green finance and ESG agenda.

Outsourcing is another potentially exciting opportunity – around 40% of respondents said they saw outsourcing increasing over the coming three years. But we need to find ways to change perceptions of what outsourcing is all about and how, through embracing technology and understanding risk, we can meet outsourcing demands.

...members are unequivocal – it is simplicity, ease of doing business and clarity that will resonate with fund managers and investors...


The overwhelming message, though, was that our absolute focus should be on providing clarity and simplicity in everything that we do. In a hugely complex environment, our members are unequivocal – it is simplicity, ease of doing business and clarity that will resonate with fund managers and investors, and we should not lose sight of that.

Jersey is not a volume player; we are all about service quality and standards and those, the survey suggests, will be our differentiators.

Over the coming months, we’ll be working hard to engage with industry and key stakeholders both on and off island to respond to the challenges this survey has set out, capitalise on our core identified strengths and look at ways to innovate in order to enhance our funds ecosystem.

With almost 90% of firms indicating that they considered promoters, investors and gatekeepers would give Jersey a four or five star rating, we have a good basis to start from, and with the backing of a clearly very ambitious and focused industry, we are on a good path to maintain and improve on the success we saw in 2019.

At the end of last year, we presented the findings of our second annual JFA members survey

JFA News
Monday
08
July 2019

New JFA Chair points to Jersey's strength in alternatives

Jersey’s ability to offer a quality service in the alternative investment space will ensure ongoing growth of its funds industry, according to Tim Morgan, the new Chair of the Jersey Funds Association (JFA).

Jersey’s ability to offer a quality service in the alternative investment space will ensure ongoing growth of its funds industry, according to Tim Morgan, the new Chair of the Jersey Funds Association (JFA).

Elected into the position of Chair at the recent AGM (28 June) of the trade association that represents Jersey’s funds industry, Tim, a Partner at offshore law firm Mourant, has practised in Jersey since 2003 advising promoters, investors, boards, regulators and service providers across asset classes including private equity, credit, real estate, hedge and liquid securities.

Prior to Jersey, Tim originally trained with Taylor Wessing in London and Brussels, before going on to practise as a corporate lawyer at PwC Legal and then at Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein in London and New York, advising on private equity sponsored transactions.

Also on the new-look JFA committee are Michael Johnson, who has been appointed Vice Chair and who heads one of the largest fund services businesses in the Island, as well as a number of other appointments to ensure the committee reflects the different aspects of the developing funds industry. Chris Marshall continues as treasurer, Niamh Lalor as chair of the legal and regulatory subcommittee, Martin Paul as the chair of education and Steve Cartwright as the chair of the marketing subcommittee. Caroline Harrington also remains as Secretary.

Tim replaces former Chair Mike Byrne, who has been at the helm of the JFA for the last three years and was thanked at the AGM for his hard work on behalf of Jersey’s funds industry.

Following his election to the role of JFA Chair, Tim said: “Jersey’s funds industry operates in an increasingly complex market, but it is an environment that Jersey thrives in. With investors continuing to show an appetite to allocate to alternatives – Jersey’s sweet spot – and thanks to its ability to adapt, its deep pool of expertise and highly effective relationships between the regulator, government and industry, Jersey is in an extremely strong position to continue to assert its strengths on the international stage.

“In recent years we have seen numerous challenges to our industry but time and again we have responded adeptly, most recently through the implementation of economic substance legislation, underlining our commitment to governance and international standards. In recent months we have achieved record levels of fund servicing business, stellar growth in alternatives, big-ticket fund launches and rising numbers of managers choosing Jersey to bring their funds to market.

“To maintain our momentum, we must be brave, ambitious and clear about our capabilities as a jurisdiction that specialises in global fund structuring and distribution, and to that end I’m looking forward to working with the committee and stakeholders on and off-island as the JFA looks to support the ongoing success of our industry.”

Figures for Jersey’s funds industry show that, at the end of 2018, the net asset value of funds administered in Jersey rose to £320bn, the highest level ever recorded, with alternatives, including private equity, real estate, hedge, infrastructure and private debt funds, now representing 86% of that business.

An active trade association representing companies with Jersey offices operating in the funds sector, the JFA has over 100 members, including organisations spanning from niche independent Jersey-owned companies to global leaders.

JFA News
Wednesday
03
April 2019

Jersey funds industry success to be celebrated at JFA Annual Dinner

The ongoing success of Jersey’s funds industry, which registered a record £320bn in assets under administration at the end of 2018, is set to be marked at this year’s Jersey Funds Association (JFA) Annual Dinner next month.

The ongoing success of Jersey’s funds industry, which registered a record £320bn in assets under administration at the end of 2018, is set to be marked at this year’s Jersey Funds Association (JFA) Annual Dinner next month.

Taking place on Friday 3 May at the Royal Jersey Showground, the black-tie event aims to be a celebration of success for Jersey’s funds industry over the past twelve months. Expected to be attended by more than 400 funds professionals, the event’s gold sponsor is Mourant whilst silver sponsors are BNP Paribas Securities Services, Moore, Ogier, PraxisIFM and PwC.

The event starts at 6.45pm with a champagne reception, sponsored by Carey Olsen.

Guest speaker for the dinner this year will be ventriloquist Nina Conti who has wowed audiences all over the world, from Las Vegas to Melbourne to the Edinburgh Festival.  She will be joined by her regular sidekick Monkey, with other characters including poetry-writing Owl, Scottish grandmother Granny, loud-mouthed New Yorker Lydia and possibly a member of the audience also likely to make an appearance.

There will also be musical entertainment provided by a local band both during and after the dinner.

Mike Byrne, Chairman of the JFA, said:

“Despite the political uncertainty in Europe over recent years, 2018 was actually a good year for Jersey’s funds industry. We achieved record levels of fund servicing business, stellar growth in alternatives, big-ticket fund launches and rising numbers of managers choosing Jersey to bring their funds to market. Our annual dinner is a fantastic way to reflect on and celebrate that success and recognise the professionals who contribute so much to the island’s industry.
“I’m delighted that Nina will provide our entertainment at what should be an extremely enjoyable evening. The dinner has always been popular so I encourage those wanting to attend to book tickets in advance.”

Tables can be booked for either 10 or 12 people and tickets are £85 per person.  To make a booking please contact JFA Executive Secretary Caroline Harrington at enquiries@jerseyfunds.org.

JFA News
Monday
05
August 2013

Jersey funds industry in strong position according to new JFA chair

Jersey’s pro-active and flexible approach to the adoption of new international regulation will ensure its funds industry can look forward to a positive future, according to Ben Robins, the new Chairman of the Jersey Funds Association (JFA).

Jersey’s pro-active and flexible approach to the adoption of new international regulation will ensure its funds industry can look forward to a positive future, according to Ben Robins, the new Chairman of the Jersey Funds Association (JFA).

Elected into the position of Chairman at the recent AGM (19 July) of the trade association that represents Jersey’s funds industry, Ben is joined by Tim Morgan, who becomes Vice Chairman.

Ben Robins, Chairman, Jersey Funds Association

A partner and head of the funds practice area at Mourant Ozannes, Ben has extensive experience in investment funds, offshore capital markets and structured finance. Having qualified as an English solicitor with Speechly Bircham in London, he returned to Jersey to join Mourant Ozannes (then Mourant du Feu & Jeune) in 1997. He became a partner at the firm in 2002 and has headed its Jersey and global funds practice areas since 2008.

Ben has been a frequent participant in local industry working groups looking at key regulatory changes, including most recently the implementation of the EU Alternative Investment Manager's Directive (AIFMD). Following his election to the role of JFA Chairman, he said:

“With AIFMD coming into force last month, it is certainly an engaging time to take over as Chairman of the Jersey Funds Association. With the pro-active approach Jersey has taken, I am convinced that we are in an extremely strong position to continue to act as a specialist centre for alternative funds business, both in and outside of Europe. It is particularly welcome news that, having now signed 27 bilateral cooperation agreements with EU Members States, including the UK, Germany and France, the Jersey Financial Services Commission is now ready to accepting applications from local alternative fund managers enabling them to continue to access EU markets.”

Tim, who has been an active member of the JFA’s committee for several years and is a Partner at law firm Ogier and a specialist in investment funds, corporate, finance and restructuring work, added:

“Jersey’s funds industry has continued to perform well in 2013. The total net asset value of funds under administration in Jersey grew in the first quarter of the year by 6.5% to surpass the £200bn barrier, while the alternative asset classes still represent over 70% of Jersey’s funds business. With its new-look and highly experienced committee now in place, the JFA will continue to look carefully at the issues facing the industry and, by working closely with Jersey Finance and the regulator, strive to maintain Jersey’s position as a leading specialist European funds centre.”

Ben and Tim replace former Chairman Nigel Strachan and Vice Chair Edward Devenport, who have been at the helm of the JFA over the last three years and were thanked at the AGM for their hard work on behalf of Jersey’s funds industry during a busy and challenging period.

An active trade association representing companies with Jersey offices operating in the funds sector, the JFA has over 70 members, including firms spanning from niche independent Jersey-owned companies to global leaders.

JFA News
Friday
30
December 2011

Jersey Funds Association 2012 Annual Dinner - Friday 9 March

The Jersey Funds Association 2012 Annual Dinner will take place on Friday 9 March at Hotel de France commencing at 6.45pm which this year is kindly being sponsored by Ipes & JP Morgan.

The Jersey Funds Association 2012 Annual Dinner will take place on Friday 9 March at Hotel de France commencing at 6.45pm which this year is kindly being sponsored by Ipes & JP Morgan.

This year the Association is delighted to announce that the guest speaker for the evening will be Milton Jones.  Milton's wonderful use of language has been showcased repeatedly on Radio 4 and he is currently on series nine of his own show.  He has also been seen on Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow, Mock the Week and is a regular writer on BBC1's hit Not Going Out.  Further details about Milton can be found on the link below.

milton CV.pdf

The dinner will take place in the Great Hall and will commence with a champagne reception which this year is kindly being sponsored by BNP Paribas Securities Services.

As in previous years, the event will be a black-tie dinner and carriages will be at 2.00am.

Once again during and after dinner Joe Stilgoe will be preforming who is a serious musician having fun!  His singing, piano playing and sense of humour have made him a favourite at the UK's top jazz clubs, where he regularly plays.

As this is always a well attended event, it is anticipated that demand for tables will be high and it is recommended that bookings are returned as soon as possible and no later than 3 February 2012 to Caroline Harrington at enquiries@jerseyfunds.org.  Whilst members are encouraged to make up their own table (or indeed two tables!) we will put togeter tables for those whose parties are smaller than 10.  A booking form is available to download by clicking on the link below.

Booking Form.doc

The cost of the dinner is £65.00 per person and dinner cards and wine lists will be circulated in due course.

It is very much hoped that support will be given to this evening that has become a highlight of the Jersey Funds Association calendar of events.