Investment funds in Cayman Islands

Maples Group

Noted for its deep bench of funds specialists, the ‘truly best in class‘ fund and investment management team at Maples Group is retained by an eye-catching array of the world’s largest private equity houses and hedge funds. Large-scale fund formations and capitalisations, M&A and downstream transactions are among the key pillars of the practice, which also advises on master-feeder funds, liquid alternatives, credit funds, hybrid funds and unit trusts. Jon Fowler sits as global head of the firm’s fund and investment management team, while Michael Richardson steers the local Cayman group, which features several headline names. Among the most experienced practitioners are Iain McMurdo, Jonathan Green, Jeremy Bomford, Jo Cunningham, Sheryl Dean, Gwyneth Rees, Tim Coak and Julian Ashworth. In July 2021, Lee Davis and Stephen Watler, who are well-versed in high-value funds deals, were promoted to the partnership.

Practice head(s):

Michael Richardson; Jon Fowler

Testimonials

‘The Maples investment funds team is truly best in class – they are quick to respond, easy to deal with, and are true experts in their fields. I always enjoy working with them because I know I will get solid legal advice and will get it quickly. I feel that Maples is the perfect co-counsel as it always feels like we are a team working together towards what is best for our clients.’

‘The team has excellent capabilities and provides impeccable service.’

‘Very strong team – know the alternatives space well and are true professionals. Great with turning around fund legal docs and addressing any issues/concerns.’

‘We often work with Andrew Keast. Andrew is very efficient, to the point, and is always very pleasant to work with.’

‘In my experience, the investment management and funds practice group is among the top with respect to expertise.’

‘The partners, Tim Coak and Christie Walton, have significant experience in the investment funds industry. Both are cognizant of and sensitive to US regulatory requirements applicable to investment managers.’

‘Jeremy Bomford has been an amazing partner in all of the work I have been doing with Maples for over 10 years – he is a pleasure to deal with and is particularly commercial in the advice he gives. Jonathan Green and Julian Ashworth have also been great to work with.’

‘Top funds team in Cayman. Very knowledgeable with excellent technical skills, but marries that with a practical approach.’

‘Jon Fowler is the best offshore funds lawyer I know. He has deep insights into the funds world in Cayman – the law, CIMA’s direction, what the trends are on fund terms.’

Key clients

TPG

Blackstone

BlackRock

Ares Management

Tidal

Goldman Sachs

Morgan Stanley

Sequoia Capital

Silver Lake

XN Y

Alua Capital Management

Global Investment Partners

RMB Capital

Clayton Dubilier & Rice

Constitution Capital Partners

Francisco Partners

GGV Capital

Bessemer Venture Partners

Walkers

Hugely responsive and commercial’, the investment funds team at Walkers is widely praised as one of the premier market leaders in the offshore investment funds space, where it advises on all aspects of fund formation and capitalisation issues, financings, buyouts, regulations and downstream transactions. It is instructed by many of the best-known names from the global investment funds sector, spanning hedge fund groups, private equity houses, asset managers and institutional investors. Lauded as ‘one of the very best private equity funds lawyers on this planet‘, Rolf Lindsay principally concentrates on private equity funds and their activities, and global managing partner Ingrid Pierce specialises in managing distressed funds in volatile markets, while Caroline Williams handles matters pertaining to co-investment and alternative investment vehicles. Elsewhere, Tim Buckley, Andrew Barker, Theo Lefkos, Bicrom Das, Matt Bernardo, Christine Ballantyne-Drewe and Ed Pearson are further standout names in the Cayman funds world. Ashley Gunning retired from the practice in September 2020.

Testimonials

‘Rolf Lindsay is without question one of the very best private equity funds lawyers on this planet. There is no other lawyer I would entrust to represent our organisation in the formation of our venture capital funds or the transactions undertaken by our Funds in the structuring of investments and syndication of financings. Rolf has a very rare quality seldom found in lawyers–absolutely the best commercial sense that is invaluable toward achieving closings for our Funds and closings for our Funds investments.’

‘Rolf’s team is exceptional. specifically Ed Pearson.’

‘Dedicated attention, specialised knowledge and advice and speedy response times.’

‘Speed of response stands out and effectiveness of guidance. Ed Pearson stands out in his practice area.’

Practical, efficient and responsive. It all begins and ends with the law, but then Walkers goes the extra step to work through with you the practical implications and likely scenarios.’

Tim Buckley is terrific — always makes himself available and is right there with you. Ed Pearson is an up-and-coming partner who is responsive, knows the law and provides actionable advice.’

The team is hugely responsive and commercial. Andrew Barker is very knowledgeable and able to marshal and shepherd his wider team very efficiently and effectively. He is always available and able to deal with matters at short notice.’

Key clients

Apollo

BNP Paribas

CVC Capital

Deutsche Wealth & Asset Management

First Reserve Corporation

GSO Capital Partners

Oaktree Capital Management

Stone Point Capital

The Blackstone Group

The Carlyle Group

UBS AG

Work highlights

  • Advised Queen’s Gambit Growth Capital on all aspects of the incorporation and listing of its $300m Special Purpose Acquisition Company.
  • Advising AlpInvest on the Cayman Islands law aspects of the launch of its $9bn Secondaries Programme.
  • Advised Churchill capital on the Lucid Motors $11.75bn Special Purpose Acquisition Company merger, the largest SPAC merger to date.

Ogier

Ogier fields a ‘deep bench of experts in Cayman funds law’, noted for their ‘keen sense of the need to balance legal and commercial concerns’. The investment funds team, which is led by James Bergstrom , advises on the whole gamut of fund structures and strategies, spanning hedge, private equity, real estate, infrastructure, energy, credit, debt, venture capital, cryptocurrency and hybrid funds. In addition to its North American fund connections, the firm also has a strong Latin America practice that is overseen by Giorgio Subiotto, who is ‘great in working with international deals due to language skills and knowledge’. Private equity and crypto funds expert Nick Rogers , regulatory expert Joanne Huckle , hedge fund specialist Justin Savage  and Angus Davison  are other key members of the group, which in February 2021 saw the promotions of Tim Cone and Emma Sutherland  to partner. At counsel level, Barry McEwan is a key name to note.

Testimonials

‘The Ogier team makes the Cayman side of a private fund formation seamless. They work efficiently with domestic counsel to quickly get the fund launched. They also provide top to bottom assistance with Cayman specific compliance (AML, local registration, etc.).’

‘Emma Sutherland was highly attentive and responsive throughout the launch process.’

‘Genuine global reach via footprint but also deep knowledge of what different partners and associates subject matter strengths are – clearly observed the desire for best client outcomes and not just keep billings in one office.’

‘Giorgio Subiotto is a fantastic investment funds in Cayman and he is a expert of his field and in Brazilian capital market as well. Pleasure working with him. Giorgio always makes himself available when we request advice, usually on very short notice.’

Attentive, knowledgeable, responsive. Particularly strong in structuring vehicles in Cayman.’

Tim Cone is a great asset for Ogier. He is very careful and also creative. Responsive, attentive. Works to find solutions to any requests that come his way.’

The Ogier Investment Funds team has a deep bench of experts in Cayman funds law. They are knowledgeable and responsive, communicate clearly, and have a keen sense of the need to balance legal and commercial concerns.

Justin Savage is our primary counsel at Ogier. Justin’s qualities that I value most are his responsiveness, thoroughness, clarity, and sensitivity to balancing legal and commercial concerns.’

Key clients

Washington Capital Management

Banco BTG Pactual S.A.

Wealth High Governance Capital Ltd.

PinnBrook Capital Management LP

Northwestern Mutual Investment Management Company, LLC

Advent International Corporation

Volpe Capital Partners

Centerbridge Credit Advisors, L.L.C.

Work highlights

  • Advised on the launch of a Private Fund (closed-ended, private equity) for Washington Capital Management. formed as a Cayman LLC.
  • Advised Banco BTG Pactual S.A. and its affiliate management and administration entities on the structuring and launch of 13 new Cayman investment funds structured as segregated portfolios within BTG’s wealth management and access platform SPCs and standalone funds established for venture capital investments.
  • Advised Centerbridge Special Credit Partners IV – offshore close-ended investment fund and onshore close-ended investment fund – on all aspects of formation and launch of the fund/GP, legal opinions, side letters, supplements and registration as a private fund with the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority.

Campbells

Campbells offers clients advice on the structuring, formation and launch of a broad range of investment funds, including hedge funds, venture capital funds, private equity funds and hybrid funds. In particular, the group, which is presided over by Alan Craig, has considerable experience in venture capital fund formations and cryptocurrency fund structures. Elsewhere, Richard Spencer  demonstrates expertise in blockchain-related issues and distressed funds, Simon Thomas specialises in the establishment of private equity funds, and senior associate Aoife Tuohy routinely acts for cryptocurrency fund managers in relation to both open-ended and closed-ended hedge fund vehicles.

Practice head(s):

Alan Craig

Key clients

Addition

Genbridge Capital

Ribbit Capital

Northern Light Ventures

Monk’s Hill Ventures

Abraaj Investment Management

GSR Ventures

ADM Capital

Kleiner Perkins

Scotiabank Asset Management

Work highlights

  • Advised Addition, a venture capital company, on the formation of Addition One LP, its first venture fund which raised $1.3bn and Addition Two, L.P. which raised US$1.4bn just six months later.
  • Advised Fairfax Africa Holdings Corporation on the Cayman aspects of a transaction in which it acquired limited partnership interests in a Cayman Islands exempted limited partnership.
  • Advised Kaszek Ventures on the formation of Kaszek Ventures V, L.P. and Kaszek Ventures Opportunity II, L.P.

Mourant

Trusted by a plethora of large fund managers, fund promoters and investors ‘to deal with the life-cycle of an investment fund’, Mourant excels in investment fund launches, structuring mandates and fund restructurings. ‘Excellent lawyerHayden Isbister leads the practice, which handles matters pertaining to a range of distressed funds, hedge funds, private equity funds and real estate funds. Two key practitioners within the team, Alex Last and Neal Lomax, are pre-eminent names in the jurisdiction for large hedge funds and private equity funds in particular. The much-praised Catherine Pham is ‘very knowledgeable on a wide range of topics including structuring and regulatory requirements’, while senior associates Rhiannon Williams and Gemma Cowan provide key support on a variety of fund-related instructions.

Practice head(s):

Hayden Isbister

Testimonials

‘The team is very professional and attentive. The partners have vast experience in the areas of service and all surrounding topics. I felt that their experience protects me from making mistakes, which could be very costly. I got a one-stop-shop for all the legal services that I needed.’

‘Catherine Pham is very approachable and impressively responsive to client needs. She is very patient as evidenced by her work with a mutual client who was new to the space yet demanding at the same time. She is very knowledgeable on a wide range of topics including structuring, and regulatory requirements.’

‘The Team is able to problem-solve complex issues as well as provide efficient feedback on regular-way investment fund issues.’

The team is very, very responsive and communicates very well. They always meet deadlines and communicate well. Their advice is spot on and they provide practical solutions to complex issues.’

Neal Lomax always responds to inquiries promptly, usually same day or within a couple hours. He makes himself available as needed and takes a hands-on approach to our work. Neal has a calm demeanour and is very easy to work with. He provides very practical advice that is easy to implement. Gemma Cowan is also very responsive. Her work product is excellent.’

‘Hayden Isbister is an excellent lawyer. Very sound technically but also personable and practical. I often recommend him. Senior associate Gemma Cowan is also recommended. ’

The team is broad in its capacity to deal with the life-cycle of an investment fund: not just a regulatory team but also extremely good on fund formation as well as advising on transactions entered into by or with investment funds.’

Catherine Pham is a standout lawyer, highly competent technically and very pragmatic and commercial. Catherine is the best of private practitioners in Cayman: an exceptional lawyer who knows her clients’ market well. She exudes calm confidence and delivers advice with elegant authority.’

Key clients

Knighthead Capital Management, LLC

Avista Capital Partners

GLP Capital Partners/GCP Capital Partners

Work highlights

  • Advised Knighthead Capital Management, LLC on the establishment, formation and private fund registration of a unique travel distressed closed-ended Cayman master-feeder structure, which included four Cayman exempted limited partnerships.
  • Advised Avista Capital Partners on a strategic GP minority stakes investment.
  • Advised GLP Capital Partners / GCP Capital Partners on the formation of a new Cayman Islands feeder fund.

Appleby

Under the leadership of Simon Raftopoulos, Appleby‘s funds and investment service group is underpinned by a strong specialism in assisting Asian managers with the formation, operation, restructuring and termination of investment funds. In addition to its track record in matters concerning private equity, real estate, venture capital and infrastructure funds, the department is also making inroads advising on the establishment of cryptocurrency and related asset class funds. Regulatory issues, fund financings and downstream transactional work are among the other areas of focus for the group. Stand-out practitioners include Sailaja Alla  and Christian Victory.

Practice head(s):

Simon Raftopoulos

Conyers

Working closely with the firm’s litigation and restructuring specialists, the investment funds practice at Conyers advises a broad range of hedge funds, private equity funds, venture capital funds, infrastructure funds and investment funds. It exhibits notable strength in fund formation work, structure issues, regulation and compliance matters, de-registrations and restructurings. The key practitioners of note are Craig Fulton  and Nicholas Pattman, both of whom routinely assist high-end funds, investment managers and service providers.

Other key lawyers:

Craig Fulton ; Nicholas Pattman

Key clients

Harbour Energy

ICONIQ Capital

Lazard Asset Management

EIG Global Energy Partners

IFM Global Infrastructure Fund

Harneys

Led by Daniella Skotnicki, the team at Harneys is skilled at assisting leading and emerging investment managers with the full life-cycle of a Cayman fund, including formation, restructuring and closure matters, both in distressed and planned scenarios. Often working as both lead counsel and support counsel to major onshore firms, the department has a track record in the private equity, hedge fund, digital asset, fintech, cryptocurrency and distributed ledger technology spaces. Cryptoasset expert Matthew Taber and senior associate James Smith, who has considerable experience in regulatory issues, are further names to note.

Practice head(s):

Daniella Skotnicki

Testimonials

‘Harneys provides wide expertise from a range of domain experts. This helps us navigate compliance / legal issues globally.’

‘They are very capable and always available.’

‘Christopher Hall has a deep knowledge of the market’s practices.’

Stuarts Walker Hersant Humphries

Praised for its ‘Cayman law expertise, pragmatism and client service‘, Stuarts Walker Hersant Humphries‘ investment funds practice is instructed by fund managers, fund promoters and institutional investors in matters spanning the entire lifecycle of funds and investment vehicles; this includes fund formations, restructurings, liquidations, terminations and concomitant regulatory advice. Key names include practice head and managing director Chris Humphries , cited for his ‘tremendous responsiveness‘ and knowledge of master-feeder and fund of fund structures, and hedge fund restructuring expert Andrew Hersant .

Practice head(s):

Chris Humphries

Testimonials

‘Very responsive and commercial. Easy to deal with and always prompt responses.’

‘Chris Humphries is the best. He is super responsive and always has good ideas when funds issues occur.’

Stuarts has provided a combination of Cayman law expertise, pragmatism and client service that has been instrumental in the success of the funds.’

Our primary contact is Chris Humphries, and it has been a pleasure to work with Chris and his team. Chris has stood out in my experience in terms of (a) his tremendous responsiveness and (b) helpful pragmatic approach to Cayman law issues that arise. I would absolutely look for additional opportunities to work with Chris and his team.’

Key clients

Lion Capital LLP

The Captive Investments Funds, Captive Resources Inc.

Avanz Capital

Newmarket Capital

Certares

Yale University

Mariner Investment Group

Tricadia Capital Management

Colchester Global Investors Limited

3G Capital

Work highlights

  • Advised Samba Capital & Investment Management Company on the establishment of an exempted limited partnership and general partner as a private fund,  registering the fund under the new Private Funds Act.
  • Advised Tenere Capital Fund on the establishment of a master-feeder partnership structure registered under section 4(3) of the Mutual Fund Act.
  • Advised Kerve Capital on the establishment of a master-feeder structure, draft ppm and all offering documents, registered under section 4(3) of the Mutual Funds Act.

Bedell Cristin

Providing innovative solutions for funds registered in Cayman’, Bedell Cristin is instructed in a variety of fund formation and transactional matters, especially for hedge funds and private equity funds, with an emphasis on closed-ended funds. In addition, the practice also acts for institutional investors, most notably some of the largest Canadian pension funds. The key names to note are practice head Joss Morris and Stephen Nelson, who joined from Collas Crill in 2019 and 2020 respectively.

Practice head(s):

Joss Morris

Other key lawyers:

Stephen Nelson; Laura Smalley

Testimonials

‘Providing innovative solutions for funds registered in Cayman.’

‘Stephen Nelson (partner) and Laura Smalley (associate) – good teamwork.’

‘I’ve worked primarily with Joss Morris and Laura Smalley in the Cayman Islands office. I enjoy working with them because I find them knowledgeable, responsive, and practical. I can come to them with a business need and they provide the necessary legal solution for that business need. I appreciate that they are willing to work with me in varying degrees of engagement, from them just providing the minimum necessary Cayman touches to primarily US documents, or working on a project from top to bottom.’

Carey Olsen

Carey Olsen’s investment fund group, which is jointly overseen by managing partners Nick Bullmore  and Jarrod Farley , regularly advises domestic and international investment funds on high-value launches, fund financing issues, downstream transactional work and regulatory and compliance requirements. Another active adviser in this space is Alistair Russell .

Practice head(s):

Nick Bullmore; Jarrod Farley

Other key lawyers:

Alistair Russell 

Key clients

Balbec Capital

Collas Crill

Collas Crill‘s corporate, finance and funds practice, which is fronted by Alan De Saram, advises on the establishment, authorisation and structuring of funds and related investment vehicles. It frequently acts for emerging managers and institutional investors, namely private equity funds and sovereign wealth funds. Senior associate Natalie Bell (who is praised as ‘an excellent lawyer and a pleasure to do business with‘) regularly assists clients with issues relating to private registered funds and mutual funds.

Practice head(s):

Alan De Saram

Other key lawyers:

Natalie Bell; Aoife Madden

Testimonials

‘The Investment Funds team at Collas Crill is excellent at providing strong commercial solutions and a high calibre of client care. They are always responsive and are highly knowledgeable about changes in the law. I would highly recommend Collas Crill for investment fund work.’

‘Natalie Bell is our primary contact at Collas Crill. Natalie is an excellent lawyer and a pleasure to do business with. She is known as a leading lawyer in her field. Natalie stays connected with the market and always shares valuable insights and contacts; we appreciate her commercial and client-focused approach to legal matters.’

‘They are very responsive, if someone is not in the office there is a backup which is communicated upfront. Client service is of high quality. It feels like they form a unity, a team, aligned with their company’s values and driven to one common goal.’

‘Natalie Bell. I have a good experience working with her, she is friendly, knows her work and is pleasant to work with. Not only professionally very capable but also fun and easily approachable which I believe makes a difference in this industry. I also worked with Alan de Saram, with whom I have the same experience. Very knowledgeable, transparent and keen to form partnerships on initiatives.’

‘Aoife Madden is very prompt and responsive.’

Key clients

Axiom Asia

Mission Capital Management Services

Harvest Group

Mandiri Investment Management

Drew & Napier, Singapore

IP Investment Management

Betterway LLC

Movchan Investment Management

Pacific Liberty

New Alchemy Capital Investment Manager LLC

iTech Sport Funds Ltd

HDH Capital Management Pte. Ltd

ARIA

Rajah & Tann

TMF

Work highlights

  • Acting for an Asian investment management business on the establishment, launch and registration of four private funds and the registration of five further existing funds as private funds, among other matters.
  • Acting for a Hong Kong and Singapore-based investment manager investing in UK and US real estate projects, which included the launch of new funds.
  • Acting for one of the largest Chinese institutional asset managers on a mutual fund registered with CIMA on a variety of issues.

Dillon Eustace

Working in close conjunction with colleagues in the firm’s main hub in Dublin, Dillon Eustace represents an assortment of emerging and well-established clients in matters concerning hedge funds, private equity funds, asset management issues, derivatives and alternative investment services. The team, which is spearheaded by Matt Mulry, primarily advises on complex formations, capital raising structures, and regulatory and compliance issues. Jonathan Law, another key name, also acts for institutional investors in relation to the establishment, operation and restructuring of alternative fund structures.

Practice head(s):

Matt Mulry

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Law

Key clients

StepStone Group

UBS Fund Services (Ireland) Limited

Crossroads Capital Management Limited

Intertrust

Deutsche Bank, Wealth Management Divisions across Cayman, NY and London

Loeb Smith Attorneys

At Loeb Smith Attorneys, the investment funds offering encompasses the full spectrum of funds matters, with a particular emphasis on advising Asian and US entities. It is especially active in the establishment and launch of a range of funds (hedge funds, PE funds, real estate funds, and cryptocurrency funds) and handling large-scale restructurings for fund managers. Gary Smith leads the practice, which also acts for banks and listed companies with interests in Cayman fund structures.

Practice head(s):

Gary Smith

Other key lawyers:

Elizabeth Kenny