Walkers to talk funds in the big apple

| 24/11/2009

(CNS): With investor confidence tentatively returning, local legal firm Walkers says the hedge fund sector is gearing up for recovery and it will be spreading the word about the future of the sector in New York next week. The firm is hosting a special educational seminar to explore the issues facing the investment funds industry. The latest in the series of ‘Walkers Fundamentals’ events, anticipated regulatory changes for funds and their advisors, the liquidity of markets and expected investment inflows in 2010, as well as fiduciary responsibilities and increasing the effectiveness of due diligence will all be on the seminar agenda.

Mark Lewis, senior investment funds partner with Walkers in the Cayman Islands said that the last seminar was a resounding success and was happy to be returning with “Opening the Gate – A Discussion on Building Investor Confidence and Positioning for Recovery” on 2 December with the industry in much better shape but with issues to address for 2010.  

"Our clients want to lay the foundation for stable, long-term growth. To do that they must have confidence in their fund documents and prepare their business models for increased regulation and heightened levels of due diligence and fiduciary responsibility. This year’s seminar will provide our clients with insights that will help them achieve their goals," he added.

Ingrid Pierce, partner with Walkers and head of the firm’s Cayman Islands hedge funds practice said the seminar comes at an opportune time.

"Last year’s seminar took place in the immediate aftermath of Lehman’s collapse; this year it comes at a moment when managers are eager to get their houses in order before the next upswing,” she observed.

“Many of our clients have completed their restructuring work and are now seeing the tail end of the liquidity issues which came to the forefront last year. Some of our clients are launching new funds with different terms and they are meeting investor requests for increased transparency and additional disclosure. It is important that these tasks are undertaken with an understanding of the broader market."

Walkers has assembled a high calibre group of guest speakers for the event who will share their expertise. Scheduled speakers include the following:

Todd Groome, Non-Executive Chairman of the Alternative Investment Management Association (AIMA) who will outline the state of the industry and the emerging regulatory framework, in particular the likely impact of the European Union’s Alternative Investment Fund Manager (AIFM) Directive;

Joel Press, Managing Director, Prime Brokerage Division, Morgan Stanley who will examine the market developments anticipated for 2010; and

Gregory Zuckerman, author and Special Writer at The Wall Street Journal, who will study the hedge fund industry’s love-hate relationship with bubbles in the market.

Partners from Walkers and Walkers Fund Services will also pull from their own experiences working with global clients to address key aspects including the responsibilities and accountability of service providers, the lender’s perspective on financing for funds, as well as the current issues regarding restructuring.

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