Guide to the British Virgin Islands Approved Manager Regime

This guide provides an overview of the British Virgin Islands’ Approved Manager regime. The regime came into effect on 10 December 2012 with the Investment Business (Approved Managers) Regulations, 2012 (the “Regulations”) and Approved Investment Managers Guidelines (the “Guidelines”) coming into force and was supplemented by the Investment Business (Approved Managers) (Amendment) Regulations, 2013. It introduces a less onerous regulatory regime for BVI domiciled investment managers and investment advisers and compliments the more heavily regulated investment business licensing regime under Part I of the Securities and Investment Business Act 2010 (“SIBA”).

The key features of the new regime are:

- For eligible managers and advisors, an alternative to licensing under Part I of SIBA.

- The applicant must be a BVI company or limited partnership.

- Application form provides for self-certification of “fit and proper” status of the applicant.

- The approved manager can commence business seven days after filing a short and simple application with the Financial Services Commission (the “Commission”) pending formal approval.

- The approved manager can act as manager or advisor to any number of private or professional funds recognised under SIBA, as well as funds domiciled outside of the BVI in a Recognised Jurisdiction (as defined below) and closed ended funds domiciled in the BVI or in a Recognised Jurisdiction, if they have the key characteristics of a private or professional fund.

- The approved manager is subject to caps of (i) aggregate assets under management of US$400 million for open ended funds and (ii) aggregate capital commitments of US$1 billion for closed ended funds.

- Annual return and unaudited financial statements to be filed with the Commission.

- No capital adequacy or professional indemnity insurance requirements and no requirement to appoint a compliance officer. The Regulatory Code does not apply.

Please see full guide below for more information.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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