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Guernsey Funds Bounce Up 18% In Year

by Amanda Banks,, London

15 December 2005

Guernsey’s fund servicing industry has grown by nearly 18% to reach US$143.4 billion in net assets (£80 billion) over the year to 30 June 2005, Lipper Fitzrovia’s latest Guernsey Fund Encyclopaedia reveals. Last year’s total was US$121.6 billion.

Lipper Fitzrovia reports that Guernsey’s position as a centre for more specialised funds is highlighted with assets invested in private equity/venture capital funds now standing at US$49.8 billion domiciled on the island. Further, of new funds launched over the year, European private equity/venture capital funds attracted the largest proportion of assets (US$ 8.3 billion)

For fund administration services of both domiciled and non-domiciled funds, International Private Equity Services (IPES) is the largest administrator by total net assets (US$26.0 billion). Northern Trust is second in terms of fund assets (US$24.9 billion) and ranked first by number of funds (206 funds).

Royal Bank of Canada maintains its lead among custodians, servicing US$17.2 billion assets. Northern Trust (US$13.4 billion) and IPES (US$9.6 billion) are the next largest.

Among professional firms, KPMG is the largest auditor of Guernsey serviced funds, auditing 348 funds. For legal advisers, Carey Olsen now offers legal advice to 553 funds, with Ozannes following in second place with 424 funds.

The largest promoters of funds domiciled on the Island, by assets under management, are Apax Partners (US$12.8 billion), Financial Risk Management (FRM) (US$12.3 billion), and Permira (US$11.5 billion).

Steven Hunt, Director of Marketing, Carey Olsen Group Services, commented: "The combined market share ranking as compiled by Lipper Fitzrovia, the leading investment research company, reveals that in terms of the numbers of sub-funds serviced in Guernsey, Carey Olsen now undertakes 49.6% of the business carried out by law firms in the island. These results demonstrate our commitment to the industry".

Connie Helyar, Managing Director of International Private Equity Services, commented: "We are delighted to be represented in this year’s survey. As a dedicated private equity administration service provider we are affected directly by the economic cycle in private equity funds. This has been the busiest period in fund raising since the bubble burst in 2001 and we have certainly seen the steepest growth rate in our business this year since then. Our total assets under administration have risen from Euro 17.1 billion (December, 2004) to Euro 23.385 billion during the period. The growth has come from our existing client base, which is good quality business with good track record i.e. the type of fund groups that continue to raise funds year on year, as well as new fund groups setting up in the market place.”

Ashley Paxton, Partner, KPMG, commented: “We are delighted that this has been another year of significant growth for the Guernsey fund industry as well as our own funds practice, and are encouraged that we have strengthened our position as the largest auditor of Guernsey serviced funds. KPMG Channel Islands Limited in Guernsey now boasts 100 staff including 8 executive directors, providing audit, tax and advisory services to all types of funds serviced in the island (as well as a large number of Guernsey domiciled funds administered off-island) with recent growth in property funds, various hedge fund structures, and private equity funds. Many of the funds are listed and we have extensive experience of advising and assisting with the relevant aspects of the UKLA listing process including recent changes arising from the Prospectus Directive. With our breadth of experience and ability to utilize the global KPMG network of resources we are ideally placed to service all types of fund in the island.”

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