David Billings, partner and Simon Thomas counsel at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, explain the options for fund domicile and structure
Ten years ago, the word 'Europe' in relation to hedge funds was used only in the context of the manager's domicile. With the exception of a select group of Luxembourg-based funds, there were few, if any, funds established in mainland Europe itself.
Today, any manager wishing to establish a European hedge fund can choose from a number of jurisdictions. The traditional offshore jurisdictions (BVI, Cayman Islands and Bermuda) remain but have been joined by the European offshore centres (Isle of Man, Jersey and Guernsey), the EU financial services centres (Ireland, Luxembourg and Malta) and a number of EU states (e.g. Germany, France and Italy, among others). Indeed, the only major European economy without a practical hedge fund product is the UK.
Despite this range of choice, in...