Keeping in touch with Carne: find out what is happening around the funds industry and get the latest updates from the experts.

Gender diversity on fund boards – addressing the gap

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The issue of a lack of female directors on corporate boards has risen up the regulatory and political agenda recently, and managers of public money in particular are focusing on the issue of diversity on fund boards. A recent article published by FT Ignites has pointed out that women currently hold just 10% of the directorships on the boards of Europe’s 30 largest cross-border funds (this figure rises to 13% when the directors of management companies are included).

Analysis by BoardIQ of 1,098 directors on 145 fund boards found only 20% of boards had a female director. Carne’s own experience of board composition broadly supports this finding.

To continue the debate, Carne recently hosted an interactive and lively seminar in front of a full house in Luxembourg, where a panel of senior executives addressed some of the core issues facing fund boards and their stakeholders when it comes to tackling the widening diversity gap between the corporate boardroom and the fund sector.

Initiatives to increase female board representation are varied, including voluntary targets, quotas, and more corporate transparency. Gender diversity also varies widely from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, with the Scandinavian countries leading the way. In some important offshore fund jurisdictions data is still currently unavailable and it remains difficult to build an accurate overall picture of gender diversity on offshore or cross-border fund boards and management company boards. Read More…

Central Bank of Ireland Report on Anti-Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism and Financial Sanctions Compliance in the Irish Funds Sector

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On 18th November 2015, the Central Bank of Ireland (the “Central Bank”) published a report on Anti-Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism (“AML /CFT”) compliance following its AML themed inspections in the Irish funds sector. The Report sets out the expectations of the Central Bank in relation to AML/CFT and Financial Sanctions (“FS”) for Funds and Fund Service Providers in Ireland.

The Report is based on on-site inspections carried out by the Central Bank over the course of 2014, supplemented by Risk Evaluation Questionnaires completed by Funds and Fund Service Providers and submitted to the Central Bank for assessment.

Head of Anti-Money Laundering at the Central Bank Domhnall Cullinan said:

Latest figures show that Irish domiciled funds have a net asset value of almost €1.8 trillion, making the Irish funds industry a significant part of the Financial Services sector. Any business with such a large variety and amount of customers, high values and volumes of transactions and a cross border nature is attractive for money laundering/terrorist financing.

The Central Bank acknowledges that many firms had responded positively to previous Central Bank communications but, as the report identifies, more work is required by firms in Ireland to effectively manage money laundering/terrorist financing risk. The Central Bank expects all Funds and Fund Service Providers to carefully consider the issues raised in the report, and to use the report to inform the development of their AML/CFT and FS frameworks. Read More…

Why fund boards must develop a response to cyber security and financial crime threats

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A recent SEC action has highlighted how concerned regulators have become about data intrusion risks in the asset management sector.

By Chris Day, Director, Carne Group

Last month the Securities and Exchange Commission settled charges with an investment adviser that the regulator alleged had failed in its duty to protect client data from hackers, in this case thought to be based in China. The SEC claimed the St Louis-based firm did not conduct regular security assessments, failed to encrypt sensitive data and did not install a firewall. Consequently, the hackers were able to access details of more than 100,000 clients.

This marks the first enforcement action of its kind for the SEC. Although no actual direct financial loss seems to have been caused, the fund manager settled charges with a fine of US$75,000. If any loss of money had been inflicted on the firm or its clients by hackers, the fine could have been far higher.

In addition, on 15 September, the SEC issued an alert which outlined the steps it would be taking in its examinations to assess cyber security risks and preparedness in its security industries inspections. It includes a governance and risk assessment, and indicates that the SEC will now be focusing on proper implementation and operation of cyber security policies and procedures. It has made it clear that this will be one of its key inspection priorities. Read More…

Luxembourg Seminar – Gender diversity on fund boards, 20 October 2015

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Carne will be hosting a free to attend seminar in Luxembourg on 20th October 2015. The panel of speakers will be presenting the latest findings on gender diversity on the boards of funds globally, as well as exploring some of the broader issues of representation of women at senior levels within the asset management industry.

Venue: Restaurant Le Sud, 8 Rives de Clausen, Luxembourg L-2165

Time:   15.30 Registration / 16.00 Panel session / 17.30 Networking and cocktails

Panel members will include:

  • Barry O’Dwyer, Head of EMEA Funds Governance, BlackRock
  • Susanne Van Dootingh, Head of European Regulatory Strategy, State Street Global Advisors
  • Kerry-Jane Nichol, Partner Asset Management, Ernst & Young
  • Denise Voss, Chairman, ALFI
  • Rita Knott, Director of the Female Board Pool Initiative in Luxembourg and Germany

To register for the event, please email

Carne Group and CalQRisk launch cybersecurity and financial crime solution for investment fund boards

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Carne Group, one of the leading global providers of governance and distribution support services for asset managers, and CalQRisk, a developer of enterprise-wide risk management technology solutions, are pleased to announce the launch of a technology-driven solution for fund boards. This new Carne CalQRisk product has been tailored to the requirements of fund boards and fund directors facing increased risks and responsibilities in the areas of cybersecurity and financial crime.

Carne CalQRisk aims to provide fund directors with a comprehensive and holistic assessment of cybersecurity and financial crime risks for the fund entity and its delegates. This includes a risk management framework for fund directors to assist in identifying where gaps exist in relation to policies, procedures, systems and controls, and which specifies the necessary actions required to close those gaps. Read More…

New opportunities for funds in the Channel Islands

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By Mark Hodgson, Managing Director, Carne (Channel Islands)

July has been a busy month on the legislative and regulatory front for funds in the Channel Islands. In particular, we would like to draw attention to new legislation that could prove of benefit to UK private equity and real estate funds, and the recent advice to the European Commission from ESMA (European Securities and Markets Authority) which has considerable implications for the passporting of funds from Jersey and Guernsey under the European Union’s AIFM Directive. Read More…

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