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

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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Central Bank of Ireland: ruling on eligibility of Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect shares in Irish funds

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The Central Bank of Ireland (CBI) this week confirmed that Irish UCITS and AIFs will be able to invest in Shanghai-listed A-shares via Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect. The changes were laid out in its Q&As on AIFs (ID 1094) and UCITS (ID 1015). This completes a period of review during which the CBI was assessing Stock Connect in the context of strict liability under UCITS IV, UCITS V and the AIFMD.

Under review was the market infrastructure in Hong Kong and Shanghai, and its ability to meet UCITS and AIFMD requirements. In particular, the CBI was focusing on how trades are settled between the Hong Kong Securities Clearing Company Limited (HKSCC) and China Securities and Depositary Clearing Company. This included the interaction between local custodians or depositaries and the two clearing entities. Read More…

Central Bank of Ireland seeks to enhance fund governance

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Central Bank of Ireland Guidance Note on Fund Management Companies

Recently the Central Bank of Ireland (the “Central Bank”) published a guidance[1] note and feedback statement in respect of fund management companies (“FMCs”).[2] The note provides guidance (draft in the case of delegate oversight) on the following:

  1. General Guidance on FMCs -  Feedback to CP86;
  2. delegate oversight;
  3. organisational effectiveness; and
  4. directors’ time commitments.

There are a number of key areas that the Central Bank is focusing on in its guidance:

  • The separation of the Designated Person (“DP”) role from that of the role of Non- Executive Director (“NED”)
  • The re-organisation of the key managerial functions for UCITS and AIFMs
  • Parameters being placed on the professional and director time commitments for FMC directors in terms of “aggregate professional time commitments”
  • Increased emphasis on oversight of particular management areas including Risk Management and Distribution

The guidance note is detailed (at 42 pages) and reflects the emphasis the Central Bank is now putting on these matters.

  Read More…

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New challenges for Irish MLROs and Fund Boards

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Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (CFT) compliance has been rising up the regulatory agenda for Irish funds.  AML / CFT was listed by the Central Bank of Ireland (CBI) as an enforcement priority for 2014 and 2015 and with a FATF review of Ireland set to take place in 2016, this looks likely to continue. With more focus than ever before on AML / CFT compliance within the Irish funds sector, we asked Carne’s Dave Burns to shed some light on several current AML / CFT issues for Irish funds.

What is the role of an MLRO?

There is a regulatory requirement in Ireland for Designated Persons (including funds) to appoint an MLRO. The MLRO is responsible for suspicious activity reporting (SARs) to the Irish Police and the Revenue Commissioners (the authorities) and acts as a liaison between the Designated Person and the authorities. The MLRO is responsible for receiving information from any party that might indicate possible suspicious transactions and processing that information accordingly. Read More…

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Carne names Steve Bernat as new CEO of Luxembourg business

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Steve Bernat joins Carne from Lemanik to strengthen independent management company business in Grand Duchy.

Carne Group, the leading global provider of independent governance solutions for the asset management industry, is pleased to announce the appointment of Steve Bernat as the new CEO of its Luxembourg office. Steve joins Carne from Lemanik Asset Management in Luxembourg and brings with him over 17 years of experience in the Luxembourg asset management industry.

Steve was responsible for developing Lemanik’s management company business. He was a member of Lemanik’s Executive Committee, responsible for business development, marketing and distribution services. As a consequence, Steve is extremely familiar with developing fund distribution support solutions for Luxembourg funds using a local management company structure.

Steve has also worked with Citibank’s Securities and Fund Services division, where he held positions within operations, product management and business development. Prior to that he was employed by State Street Bank / IFDS, and Linedata Services. Between 1998 and 2001 Steve was a team leader with Activest, now Pioneer Asset Management.

Said John Donohoe, CEO of Carne Group: “Steve will be overseeing the ongoing development of our already considerable Luxembourg operation, including the growth of our independent UCITS and AIFM-licensed management company and associated risk management and distribution support. Luxembourg will continue to play a key role in the overall global governance and oversight service we deliver to our clients.”

Steve Bernat commented: “Luxembourg is a critical platform for global asset managers seeking serious, institutional-grade solutions for cross-border distribution. Carne’s brand as a provider of governance excellence is already well established globally, and I’m excited to be given the opportunity to help with delivering that service to Luxembourg funds.”

Carne established its office in Luxembourg in 2006. Since then the firm has expanded to over 20 people in Luxembourg, including support personnel for an independent UCITS and AIFMD-authorised management company and now services in excess of €20 billion in fund assets.

For more information on Carne’s governance and distribution support services for Luxembourg funds, please contact Steve Bernat – or call +352 2673 2333.

Hedge fund Harness uses Carne to support launch of Luxembourg UCITS

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Harness draws on Carne’s management company, independent directors and project management services in launch of UCITS forex fund.

LUXEMBOURG, May 2015: Carne Group, the leading global provider of governance and oversight services to the asset management industry, has been chosen by Harness to provide an independent management company solution for its new Luxembourg UCITS fund.

Harness is making use of Carne’s independent UCITS compliant management company in Luxembourg to support the launch. In addition Carne is also providing two independent directors to the Board of the SICAV. Harness and Carne worked together on project managing the successful launch of the fund; Carne liaised with the Luxembourg regulator and helped to manage the approvals process.

Harness was established in 2009 as a specialist asset manager. The firm’s objective is to deliver absolute returns within the global macro space through a fundamental discretionary strategy, focusing exclusively on foreign exchange. The group’s approach integrates qualitative analysis, in-house macro-economic research and investment regime assessment with quantitative factor analysis.

Harness has developed a number of investment vehicles and separate accounts through which it expresses its investment philosophy, however it offers only one investment strategy.

The group oversees in excess of US$740 million in absolute return mandates with foundations, family offices, banks, pension funds and asset management companies. Philippe Peress is the founder and Principal of Harness Group. The Group is controlled and owned by the principal’s family.

Martin Burke, Product Specialist of Harness Investment Group Ltd, commented: “We are pleased to have been able to work with a firm of Carne’s experience and professionalism in what has been a successful fund launch. Carne came recommended by some of our key partners at Harness and have delivered to high expectations. Their deep understanding of the regulatory and oversight requirements in launching UCITS product has played a valuable role in the launch of our fund.”

Aymeric Lechartier, Managing Director with Carne, added: “For a sophisticated fund of this nature, it is important to have a partner who can help with the sometimes quite complex regulatory and operational requirements entailed by current UCITS regulations. Carne is an established provider of Luxembourg governance and registration solutions with the extensive service provider network that can facilitate a smooth approval and launch process for both UCITS and AIFMD funds.”

Carne is a provider of Luxembourg governance solutions including UCITS and AIFMD management company services, independent directors and conducting officers.

For more information on Carne’s solutions for Luxembourg funds, please contact Aymeric Lechartier –

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