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Legal market overview
The British Virgin Islands (BVI) recently experienced strong activity levels from well-established investment fund managers and the jurisdiction also saw a growing provision of financing to private equity funds, which resulted in a larger number of private equity fund launches. Meanwhile, in M&A, there was increased use in the BVI of court-approved schemes of arrangement, frequently for tax or regulatory reasons.
Significant legal market developments included Ogier's management buy-out of Ogier Fiduciary Services, further to which former dispute resolution head Michael Fay QC left to establish his own firm. Meanwhile, Ogier expanded its contentious practice in Asia, relocating BVI and Asia litigation head Ray Ng to Hong Kong from the BVI in July 2014.
In April 2014, Harney Westwood & Riegels expanded its global footprint with the opening of its seventh office, in Singapore, relocating banking and finance practice group head Colin Riegels from Hong Kong as the managing partner of the new office. Also of note, Cayman Islands-based law firm Campbells established an independent office in June 2013 in the BVI.
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By Kerry Anderson
Click here -> onealwebster.asianinvestor.dec12 to read Kerry Anderson's co-published chapter featured in Asian Investor (December 2012) entitled 'Fast and Simple in the BVI - The British Virgin Islands have responded to regulatory changes by making fund and manager domiciling painless and efficient.
Fund investors and the fund industry globally should take note of the recent decision of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court Appellate Division’s (the “Court of Appeal”) in Madoff related litigation. Essentially, the Court of Appeal found that monies could not be recovered from former investors by the liquidators of Fairfield Sentry Limited (“Fairfield”) a BVI investment fund and investor in Bernard L Madoff Investments Securities limited (“BLMIS”), where those investors had redeemed their shares for significant value before BLMIS collapsed.
The British Virgin Islands ("BVI") is the world's leading offshore corporate domicile and is known for continuously refining its laws to accord with, and improve upon international standards whilst promoting a business oriented framework.
WHERE IS THE BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS The British Virgin Islands (“BVI”) is a British overseas territory situated to the east of Puerto Rico between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean. The country consists of the main islands of Tortola, Virgin Gorda, Anegada, and Jost Van Dyke and over fifty other smaller islands and cays clustered around the aquamarine waters of the Sir Francis Drake Channel.
The much anticipated Trade Marks Bill (“the Bill”) was recently circulated to the industry for comments. The Bill, which when enacted will be known as the Trade Marks Act, 2012, promises to introduce much needed change to the trademark industry in the British Virgin Islands and place the jurisdiction in line with other modern jurisdictions.
Those who do business in the PRC have long recognised the benefits of doing so through a corporate structure which enables onshore operations but offshore ownership.- Ogier
In today’s financial environment, investor capital for a start-up fund can be hard to come by. Kerry Anderson, Partner of a leading offshore law firm in the British Virgin Islands explains both the initial and long term benefits to setting up your fund in the BVI
The current economic climate has forced many companies to consider their future and, for those able to survive, there has been significant impetus in cost saving and rationalising structures where possible. However, it is not only in the downturn that companies look to restructure. This process can also have a positive spin, especially where a company is seeking to structure acquisitions or expand into new areas of operation.- Ogier
Offshore companies have long been a popular option for businesses. However, the recent global financial crisis has led to several legislative attempts recently by governments globally, aiming to limit the benefits that are available to companies looking to take advantage of attractive features, such as favourable tax conditions, that such companies offer.
Stephen Baker, senior partner at Baker & Partners, was invited as a panelist to the International Bar Association (IBA)’s Annual Anti-Corruption conference, Paris, exploring how assets can be located, preserved and recovered in corruption cases.
HaoLiWen recently has helped clients to resolve several customs classification (HS code) cases, and the clients benefits a lot in terms of import duties saves or avoidance of administrative or even criminal penalties.
The participants of a workshop on fraud risks among senior management have discussed reasons of corporate fraud, potentially fraud-conducive environments and ways to fight it.
Danos & Associates has recently established a new office in Kiev, Ukraine. We are proud of our cooperation with Lex-Liga law firm. Lex-Liga is one of the leading law firms in Ukraine. The firm offers full services in all areas of law and is based in Kiev. Lex-Liga's lawyers and staff are highly experienced and professional.
The first translation of the report Airport Competition in Europe commissioned by Airports Council International Europe (ACI EUROPE) has been officially published in Russia. The translation was initiated by the Federal Air Transport Agency (Rosaviatsia) and was carried out by VEGAS LEX law firm and the First Infrastructure Company InfraONE.
On 2 June 2015, the Russian Constitutional Court announced its resolution concerning the claim of OOO Zapolyarneft stating that environmental charges imposed on this company were disproportionate. One of the rules of the Russian Forestry Code and the Russian Government's resolution based on it were recognised as inconsistent with the Constitution.
In the elegant atmosphere of Jugoslovenska Kinoteka in Belgrade, Karanović & Nikolić hosted a celebratoin marking two decades of business operations.
All the evidence indicates that the authorities no longer view mortgage brokers as the middle man, free from all blame. As a result, brokers are increasingly finding themselves in the dock along with people who made the fraudulent mortgage applications that aroused the interest of investigators.
23 June 2015, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Das Magazin FOCUS hat in seiner aktuellen Spezialausgabe wieder eine Liste der führenden Steuerkanzleien in Deutschland veröffentlicht. GSK Stockmann + Kollegen wurde dabei erneut im Bereich „Umwandlung, Umstrukturierung und M&A“ als Top-Steuerkanzlei ausgezeichnet und erhielt das damit verbundene FOCUS-Siegel „Top-Steuerkanzlei 2015“.