Rising Stars

Investment funds in Cayman Islands

Maples Group

Maples Group‘s sizeable team offers clients ‘a very deep bench‘ of dedicated specialists. ‘Pre-eminent practitioner‘ Michael Richardson acts as global head of the practice, and has extensive experience advising on transactional and restructuring issues relating to offshore investment funds. Managing partner Jonathan Green specialises in private equity and hedge fund formation; such funds are also the focus of Jeremy Bomford and Lee Davis, who are well versed in assisting with ongoing maintenance work. Stephen Watler is regularly instructed by Asian clients to advise on SPCs and other investment fund structures. Tim Coak and Iain McMurdo are also noted. As an additional strength, the firm is able to provide EU-regulated fund advice from its Irish desk in Cayman.

Practice head(s):

Michael Richardson

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Green; Sheryl Dean; Gwyneth Rees; Christie Walton; Grant Dixon; Julian Ashworth; Patrick Rosenfeld; Andrew Keast; Iain McMurdo; Jeremy Bomford; Christina Gordon; Tim Coak; Lee Davis; Stephen Watler; Caroline Heal; Jo Cunningham; Alex Howard; Stef Dimitriou; Ian Kirwan


‘Maples has a very deep bench for all the Cayman assistance we require.’

‘Top-notch team across the board. Commercial, responsive, knowledgeable and experienced. They are always able to deliver the right experts in a timely fashion.’

‘Michael Richardson is a pre-eminent practitioner. Terrific with clients, super commercial and pragmatic.’

‘Caroline Heal is a fantastic lawyer who is excellent at client service and pulling in the right colleagues to help us on whatever matter we are facing.’

‘Jo Cunningham is smart, efficient, technically sound and cares deeply about the client experience and outcome.’

‘By far and away, the strongest law firm in the region for fund formation and related matters.’

‘Alex Howard has developed into an exceptional private funds partner. Alex is very commercial, technically excellent and always available. Also, has a great communication style and either knows the answer or will get it for you right away.’

‘Depth of knowledge and experience and responsiveness. Great client service. Creative when needed.’

Key clients




Advent International

Ares Management Corporate

Bessemer Venture Partners



Clayton Dubilier & Rice (CD&R)

Arena Investors

The D.E. Shaw Group

I Squared Capital

KoBold Metals

Fortress Investment Group

Grosvenor Capital Management


Work highlights

  • Advised Blackstone on its first-time growth equity vehicle Blackstone Growth (BXG) Funds.
  • Advised Clayton Dubilier & Rice on its successful £7bn bid to acquire Morrisons.
  • Advised Ares Management on its IPO.


Standing out as an adviser of choice for many of the world’s most renowned investment funds, Walkers‘ expertise stretches from fund formation and capitalisation work, to assistance with financing and downstream transactions. A key differentiator is the firm’s risk and regulatory practice, which acts as an extension of the funds team. Caroline Williams is the senior relationship partner for a number of the group’s large and institutional private equity clients, while Melissa Lim is a leading name for relevant work at the intersection of finance and technology. Both Andrew Barker and Bicrom Das have wide practices, with the former bringing significant SPAC expertise to the group. Managing partner Ingrid Pierce and James Melen round out the roster of key senior contacts. In terms of more junior partners, Christine Ballantyne-Drewe and Matt Bernardo are highly recommended. Tim Buckley retired in mid-2023.

Practice head(s):

Ingrid Pierce; Caroline Williams; Melissa Lim; James Melen

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Barker; Bicrom Das; Christine Ballantyne-Drewe; Matt Bernardo; Jason Allison; Martin Davies; Sam Francis


‘The Walkers investment funds team is best in class. They have a deep bench of practical attorneys who are always available and at the top of their game substantively.’

‘Melissa Lim is in a league of her own. She is very commercial, incredibly responsive, always thinking many steps ahead and is very user friendly to work with. I simply refuse to work on a Cayman Islands fund formation where she is not the lead partner.’

‘They are very responsive and extremely commercial.’

‘I have worked with Caroline Williams for almost 20 years, and she is among the best in the business. ‘

‘We receive excellent services in a timely manner, there is no need for repetition, endless back and forth emails. We receive the advice needed with a proper turnaround time and cost, and with no risk as the firm has solid technical knowledge and advice for us.’

‘We have worked with Bicrom Das for many years. There has never been an instance when Bicrom was not able to support us on the spot, produce documents or circulate templates, answers and reviews in a timely manner with the necessary sophistication imposed on us by the complex nature of our deals.’

Key clients

EJF Capital LLC

COVA Acquisition Corp.

Brown Brothers Trust Company (Cayman) Limited

Brown Brothers Harriman & Co.

Oaktree Capital Management, L.P.

Brighton Park Capital Management, L.P.

GNI Group

Sumeru Equity Partners

PIMCO DISCO Contingent Capital Fund

Further Global Capital Management, L.P.

Capitalworks Investment Partners International Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising EJF Capital, a Cayman SPAC, on its listing and subsequent $8.5bn merger with Pagaya.
  • Instructed to act as Cayman legal counsel by COVA Acquisition Corporation, a SPAC listed on NASDAQ.
  • Advising Oaktree Acquisition Corporation II on its merger with Alvotech Holdings.


The team at Mourant is best known for assisting with launches and structuring and restructuring mandates across a wide range of asset classes – primarily private equity, hedge, credit and distressed funds – and strategies. Since 2022, Catherine Pham, who ‘offers the perfect mix of being excellent technically, super responsive and very personable‘, has headed up the practice, although former group lead Hayden Isbister remains active as a managing partner. Neal Lomax is singled out by clients for the strength of his ‘idea generation to get to the optimal outcome‘.

Practice head(s):

Catherine Pham

Other key lawyers:

Neal Lomax; Hayden Isbister


‘Timeliness and quality of work are standouts, and the experience they bring to my business is exceptional. When working with investors, having the Mourant name as Cayman legal counsel adds to the overall investment proposition enormously.’

‘Catherine Pham offers the perfect mix of being excellent technically, super responsive and very personable and relatable. She is a pleasure to work with.’

‘Neal Lomax has that perfect mix of deep knowledge of the law, strong interpersonal skills, commercial acumen, timeliness and idea generation to get to the optimal outcome. I can strongly recommend Neal for Cayman Islands investment funds work.’

‘I have found the Mourant team to be very knowledgeable on all subject matters and pleasure to work with.’

‘Hayden Isbister is extremely responsive and consistently goes the extra mile in addressing our questions and ensuring that our mutual clients understand and can address the issues that they face.’

‘Highly responsive, very experienced, and able and willing to help on short notice.’


At Ogier, the ‘fast, intelligent, business-driven team‘ counts hedge, private equity, real estate, infrastructure, energy, credit, debt, venture capital, and crypto funds among its regular clients. The group is praised for its ability to ‘effectively address complex and challenging issues‘, utilising the strength of the firm’s corporate, finance, private wealth and litigation departments. James Bergstrom acts as the global head of the investment funds practice, with Nick Rogers leading on private equity work, and Giorgio Subiotto overseeing the Latin America-focused offering alongside Tim Cone. Joanne Huckle is the name to note for regulatory issues, while Justin Savage is a key contact for corporate governance and operation matters. Emma Sutherland is noted for the breadth of her practice. Counsel Barry McEwan and managing associate Gemma Cowan are likewise recommended.

Practice head(s):

James Bergstrom; Nick Rogers; Giorgio Subiotto

Other key lawyers:

Joanne Huckle; Justin Savage; Emma Sutherland; Barry McEwan; Gemma Cowan; Tim Cone


‘Ogier has a fast, intelligent, business-driven team. They are able to address complex points in a very clear and objective manner, with high quality. They’re excellent. They have a lot of chemistry among themselves and that facilitates all sorts of demands.’

‘They are responsive, knowledgeable and efficient.’

‘I value reliability and accessibility, and Justin Savage always provides these, directly or through his associates.’

‘Besides Ogier’s expertise in Cayman Islands law and their international perspective, we appreciate the flexibility and “can-do” attitude the team has demonstrated throughout the different engagements.’

‘Ogier has consistently exhibited a demonstrable strength in being patient and mindful of our timings and requirements, which has helped us always feel supported and at ease. Overall, we have the best impression of the team, value their client-focused approach and hope to continue working with them in the future.’

‘Ogier has shown a high level of proficiency, handling complex and sophisticated matters with expertise and professionalism. The team is highly responsive and provides excellent service levels, demonstrating their commitment to meeting our needs promptly and effectively.’

‘The team demonstrates very strong depth and breadth, with a wide range of skills, knowledge, and perspectives, allowing them to effectively address complex and challenging issues.’

Key clients

Saguaro Capital Management, LLC

Prisma Capital

Banco BTG Pactual S.A.

DeFi Alliance LLC

Level 5 Capital Partners LLC

Work highlights

  • Advised on the launch of two open-ended master feeder structures comprising: (1) Saguaro Large Cap Partners Offshore Fund and Saguaro Large Cap Master Fund, which focus on large-cap entities with market caps of $20bn and above; and (2) Saguaro SMID Partners Offshore Fund and Saguaro SMID Master Fund, which focus on small to mid-cap entities with market caps of up to $20bn.
  • Advised Prisma Capital on the establishment of an investment advisory entity in, and operating from, Cayman, including assisting with its registration as an adviser under applicable regulations, the lease of premises, immigration matters, substance and implications, and related upstream and downstream corporate and investment fund matters.
  • Advised DeFi Alliance on the establishment and launch of Alliance Cayman Feeder II, a Cayman closed-ended fund formed as an exempted limited partnership.


Sitting within Campbells‘ broader corporate department – which is headed up by Alan Craig – the firm’s fund-focused offering is particularly known for advising on venture capital fund formations, seed capital arrangements, and the subsequent investment cycle; Simon Thomas is the go-to name for such mandates. Regulatory work in the funds space is another key area of strength. In team news, Kristy-Anne Leith was promoted to partner in April 2023.

Practice head(s):

Alan Craig; Simon Thomas

Other key lawyers:

Kristy-Anne Leith


‘Simon Thomas provides excellent service, both from a legal knowledge perspective as well as from a practical business viewpoint.’

Key clients


Ribbit Capital

Kaszek Ventures

Work highlights

  • Advised Addition on the launch of its fourth and fifth venture funds, each raising $1.5bn.
  • Advised Ribbit Capital on the launch of its latest flagship fund, Ribbit Capital X.
  • Advised Kaszek Ventures on the launch of Kaszek Ventures VI and Kaszek Ventures Opportunity III.

Carey Olsen

At Carey Olsen, a trio of senior corporate and commercial specialists comprising managing partner Nick Bullmore, and Jarrod Farley and Alistair Russell, focuses on mandates relating to both regulated and unregulated investment funds in Cayman. The team’s workload ranges from assistance with fund establishments, to transactional, financing and compliance matters, including local business licensing issues.

Practice head(s):

Nick Bullmore; Jarrod Farley

Other key lawyers:

Alistair Russell


‘Jarrod Farley’s practice is distinguished by exceptional professionalism and responsiveness. The team’s expertise in navigating the complexities of fund formation, combined with proactive problem-solving, empowers clients to make informed decisions.’

‘Jarrod Farley’s deep understanding of fund formation intricacies make him an exceptional partner.’

Key clients

Israel Secondary Fund III, L.P.

Work highlights

  • Advised on the formation and launch of the Israel Secondary Fund III, which included co-ordinating registration with Cayman Islands Monetary Authority.


Operating as a ‘cohesive unit‘, the investment funds team at Appleby has worked closely with the technology department to carve out a niche for itself in the digital assets space, making the firm a go-to adviser for the establishment of funds investing in cryptographic assets, and the creation of tokenised funds. Sailaja Alla heads up the practice Christian Victory departed to HSM in 2023.

Practice head(s):

Sailaja Alla


‘We’ve been working with the Appleby’s team for several years and they have performed well. They have functioned as a cohesive unit – performing services at the appropriate levels of experience based on the complexity of the task.’

‘Sailaja Alla is our principal point of contact and we are extremely pleased with her down-to-earth and approachable manner as well as responsiveness and attention to detail.’

‘Good listeners to issues and problems and willing to work commercially with clients to achieve goals.’

Key clients

J-STAR Co., Ltd.

Karate Combat

Negev Capital Investments Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising J-STAR on the No.5 Series Funds, five private equity fund structures specialising in leveraged buyouts of privately held or publicly traded companies, or divisions of larger companies; recapitalisations of family-owned or closely held companies; balance sheet restructurings; acquisition financings; and growth capital.
  • Advised Karate Combat on its launch of a decentralised autonomous organisation.
  • Advised on the establishment of Negev Capital Fund One which will invest in companies of all stages, including public companies, primarily engaged in the biotech sector.


At Conyers, corporate department head Matthew Stocker also leads on fund work, and takes on a range of mandates on behalf of both open-ended and closed-ended investment funds, encompassing issues relating to hedge funds and private equity matters. In September 2023, the group added Theo Lefkos, who joined from Walkers and now leads the firm’s Cayman private equity team; he advises on the formation and operation of private funds and related downstream activities. The team on the ground is supported by the firm’s global funds practice, which has offices strategically located in London, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Stocker

Other key lawyers:

Matthew Harkness; Theo Lefkos


The well-regarded team at Harneys is instructed by a broad roster of investment fund managers to advise on all aspects of a fund’s lifecycle, from formation work to restructuring and closure issues, in both planned and distressed scenarios. Additionally, the firm has established a specialised offshore regulatory practice. Christopher Hall, Matthew Taber and James Smith are the key expert names to note.

Practice head(s):

Christopher Hall

Other key lawyers:

Matthew Taber; James Smith


‘Wide array of strength and capabilities. Timely support and a true understanding of the business side.’

‘James Smith is a fantastic partner whom we had great experience with. He’s knowledgeable, responsive and has a deep understanding of the firm’s capabilities so he can refer to others in their area of specialities.’

Key clients

Culligan International

Delos Digital, LLC

Work highlights

  • Advised Culligan International on the transaction to combine the client and Waterlogic Group Holdings.
  • Assisting Delos Digital with the set up of a new Cayman master fund with a possible feeder to follow.

Stuarts Humphries

With its boutique investment funds, corporate, fintech, litigation and regulatory offering, Stuarts Humphries is well placed to handle mandates at the intersection of these various areas of specialism; recently, the team has been actively involved with the registration of funds for blockchain, STOs, DAOs and cryptocurrencies. Chris Humphries is the key senior contact, and is ably supported by Jonathan McLean and Megan Wright.

Practice head(s):

Chris Humphries

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan McLean; Megan Wright


‘Very responsive and lots of experience forming Cayman funds.’

‘Chris Humphries is an encyclopedia of Cayman funds rules. Super knowledgeable. Very responsive.’

‘Service and responsiveness, particularly from Chris Humphries.’

Key clients

Ampleforth Fund

Blue Sky Capital

Cope Corrales C4M SPC

Meow Technologies USDI Financial

VT Carbon Feeder Fund

Black Pearl Capital Partners

ChainLink Luna


Guggenheim Investments

Vikara Capital Fund

Work highlights

  • Advising Meow Technologies on the establishment of its crypto exchange.
  • Advising Blue Sky Capital, a global quantitative investment manager, on a range of investment fund transactions in the crypto field.
  • Advising Mariner Investment Group on a range of fund transactions.

Bedell Cristin

Experienced duo Joss Morris and Stephen Nelson oversee the funds work at Bedell Cristin; both are experienced in advising on structuring and formation work, primary and secondary investments, as well as relevant transactional, financing and regulatory matters. The group is particularly well positioned to assist institutional investors with their own offshore and co-investment structures, and has built up a considerable client bank of Middle East-based fund managers.

Practice head(s):

Joss Morris

Other key lawyers:

Stephen Nelson

Collas Crill

With expertise spanning the entire fund lifecycle, Collas Crill is equally proficient in handling formation and licensing, financing and restructuring mandates, as well as assisting with the resolution of issues, including suspensions and sanctions. The team is particularly noted for its focus on emerging markets and managers, particularly those from the US and Asia. Natalie Bell is the key senior contact.

Practice head(s):

Natalie Bell

Other key lawyers:

Chantelle Day; Laura Oseland


‘Responsive and commercial.’

‘Natalie Bell and Laura Oseland: clever lawyers with an in-depth knowledge of Cayman regulations.’

‘Collas Crill has an offshore global reach, with an extremely close and professional approach to its clients. The flexibility to meet client’s requirements has been paramount in terms of costs efficiency and a personalised service.’

Key clients

Kingsmead Asset Management Pte. Ltd

Vista Global Opportunities Fund SPC


Holdun Family Office (Bahamas) Limited

World Arbitrage Fund


Harvest Private Wealth Thematic Fund SPC

Raffles Fund 5 Limited

Velox Arbitrage Fund

Aestus Capital

New Alchemy


Work highlights

  • Advising Harvest Private Wealth Thematic Fund SPC on the establishment of several new sub-funds, in the form of new segregated portfolios.
  • Instructed as local counsel by a Bahamian multi-family office and discretionary wealth management firm, advising on restructuring and migrating funds and assisting with redemptions.
  • Advising Velox Arbitrage, a Canadian manager, on the creation of a new $250-300m crypto fund employing arbitrage trading and investment strategies within decentralised finance.

Dillon Eustace

Dillon Eustace‘s Cayman-based investment funds team works closely with its counterpart in Ireland, and receives instructions from the gamut of participants operating across hedge and private equity funds, derivatives, and investment services. Recently, the group has seen an uptick in demand for its regulatory and compliance offering. Matt Mulry leads on the key matters.

Practice head(s):

Matt Mulry

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Law

Key clients

StepStone Group

UBS Fund Services (Ireland) Limited

Crossroads Capital Management Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised on the formation of the Irish part of a multi-jurisdictional lending structure involving a US fund, a Cayman fund, an Irish fund and a Luxembourg fund.
  • Established a global special situations Irish regulated fund.
  • Advised a US private debt manager on the establishment of a master feeder structure involving two Irish ICAV qualifying investor alternative investment funds and a Cayman master credit fund.

Loeb Smith Attorneys

Under the leadership of Gary Smith, practitioners at Loeb Smith Attorneys capably advise on the gamut of matters related to offshore investment fund formations and launches involving all asset classes, including public securities, upper mid-market private equity, venture capital, cryptocurrency, and real estate. In team news, January 2023 saw the promotion of Robert Farrell to partner.

Practice head(s):

Gary Smith

Other key lawyers:

Robert Farrell