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Malta Law Firm

Investment Funds
Your Trusted Advisors
Investment Funds
Dr. Charles Cassar
Malta Law Firm > Investment Funds

Investment Funds

Malta: a leading hub for funds

With hundreds of hedge funds, retails funds and UCITS schemes choosing the country as their home every year, Malta is no longer seen as an 'emerging' funds domicile, and is now regarded as a well-established jurisdiction of considerable depth and sophistication. A number of important factors have contributed to this success:

  • Sound and sensible regulation which takes into account the needs of businesses whilst safeguarding the interests of investors;
  • A low cost and favourable fiscal base, rendering business models feasible where they would be unworkable elsewhere;
  • An approachable regulator, willing to discuss innovative ideas whilst requiring compliance with the highest standards;
  • Ease of access to the European market for investment;
  • Quick application turnaround times;
  • Flexibility as to the choice of service providers, e.g. local fund administrators not being required;
  • Availability of self-managed structures;
  • Sub-fund (protected cell company) legislation, permitting the creation of ring-fenced pockets of assets and liabilities within the same legal entity.

Investment Services Law in Malta

Malta funds: Collective Investment Schemes

Malta offers fund managers a variety of vehicles that can cater for a broad range of investment strategies and investor types. Most funds are structured as SICAVs, investment companies with variable share capital. However, a Malta fund can also be structured as an INVCO (an investment company with fixed share capital), a unit trust, a contractual arrangement or a partnership. These legal structures serve as vehicles for a variety of fund types, including Professional Investment Funds, UCITS funds, retail funds and private collective investment schemes.

Malta Hedge Funds: Professional Investor Funds

The Maltese hedge fund product is the Professional Investor Fund (PIF), which has proven to be the most popular fund type that Malta offers. The PIF is highly flexible, providing fund managers with a product which is generally subject to no leverage and investment restrictions. A PIF can thus be used as a vehicle through which to conduct highly innovative or unorthodox investment strategies. The flipside of this flexibility is that PIFs can only be sold to investors meeting certain minimum investment and sophistication criteria. Having said that, Malta also offers an interesting, 'quasi-retail', variant of the PIF, the Professional Investor Fund sold to 'Experienced' Investors, which can be sold to investors with a low minimum investment threshold of EUR 10,000, as long as certain leverage restrictions and broad investment limitations are adhered to.

Investment Funds Practice

Our funds practice focuses on the structuring and setting-up of funds and the provision of on-going advisory services at post-licensing stage. We assist our clients with the drafting of all regulatory documentation, including offering memoranda and ancillary agreements. We also manage relations with regulatory authorities. From a practical perspective, we connect clients to high quality personnel and service providers in the jurisdiction and generally act as primary reference point for all aspects of the project. Our firm has a particular focus on the creation of funds which follow unorthodox investment strategies or which use unconventional structures. Every client benefits from a dedicated team of lawyers and other professionals who provide advice which is not staid and legalistic and which instead centres around the practical, real-world needs of the applicant.

Malta Financial Services Lawyers

Our lawyers work closely with other practitioners in the firm to provide an ‘all-in-one’ service to our financial services client portfolio. We are responsible for the set up and maintenance of a large portfolio of investments services companies and funds, where we assist the client on various aspects including jurisdictional selection, choice of legal vehicle, and ensuring that such structures comply with all local company law and regulations. Ancillary services we provide include corporate compliance and company secretarial services for private and public companies, setting up of brick-and-mortar or online business operations, assistance with the selection of external service provides, real estate advisory services and restructuring or redomiciliation assistance.

Featured Publications





Investment Funds Publications

Malta Loan Funds: MFSA Issues Investment Services Rules for Loan Funds - Charles Cassar - 16/04/14
Malta Professional Investor Funds Post-AIFMD - Dr Charles Cassar - 16/09/13
The Definition of AIFs under the AIFMD - Stevie Aquilina - 30/08/13
Calculation of Capital Requirements Under AIFMD - Dr Charles Cassar - 01/08/13
Malta Binary Options - Dr Charles Cassar - 25/07/13
Malta AIFMD Passporting - Dr Charles Cassar - 11/07/13
Malta Financial Services Authority launches AIFM application process - Dr Charles Cassar - 09/07/13
AIFM in Malta: Frequently Asked Questions - Dr Charles Cassar - 27/05/13
Malta & Cyprus: A sea apart (European Commission Report on Malta) - Dr Maria Chetcuti Cauchi - 17/04/13
DTA Tax Treatment of Malta Collective Investment Vehicles - Michelle de Maria - 25/02/13
 
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Investment Funds News

Limits Applicable to Cross Sub-Fund Investment in Malta - Maria Chetcuti-Cauchi - 19/02/14
Malta's Financial Services Industry - Performance in 2013 - Dr Priscilla Mifsud Parker - 21/01/14
MiFID 2: EP and Council Reach In Principle Agreement - Charles Cassar - 14/01/14
Malta: Best Funds Domicile in Europe - David Joseph Borg - 29/11/13
Malta In Line With EU Rules On Hedge Funds - Dr Charles Cassar - 03/09/13
Opinion by ESMA regarding marketing & passporting rights under the AIFMD despite late transposition - David Joseph Borg - 06/08/13
FATCA deadline extended till 1st July 2014 - Justine Bielik - 17/07/13
AIFMD Implementation in Malta: MFSA Issues AIFMD Implementing Measures - Dr Charles Cassar - 28/06/13
MFSA Issues AIFMD Self-Assessment Questionnaires - Dr Charles Cassar - 10/05/13
Cross Sub-Fund Investment - MFSA Feedback - Dr Robert Spiteri - 09/05/13
 
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Recent Work in Investment Funds

We have advised an asset management firm providing sophisticated foreign exchange trading services to a clientele composed primarily of hedge funds and other sophisticated investors. We were engaged to assist the client in obtaining a Category 2 investment services license, permitting the licensee to hold and control client assets. Our engagement also covered all other aspects of the set-up process, as well assisting some of the promoters with their relocation to Malta. Our firm assisted the promoters in sourcing local personnel for staffing purposes, as well as with all practical aspects of the set-up.

 
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Chetcuti Cauchi is a Malta Law Firm specialising in Malta Company Formation, Malta Tax Advisory, Malta Gaming Licenses, Malta Investment Funds, Malta Investment Services, Malta Permanent Residency, Cyprus Company FormationMalta Yacht Registration, Malta Ship Registration