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VBK+CO expanding with Luxembourg based Radices

VBK+CO grows its footprint by expanding its Fund Administration practice by acquiring an equity interest in Luxembourg based Radices Fiduciam SA (“Radices”)

June 5, 2018

VBK+CO, a global independent provider of fund administration, accounting and compliance services to investment funds, family offices and corporate clients announced today that it has acquired an equity interest in the Luxembourg based Radices.

Radices was established in 2008 and is supervised by the Commission de Surveillance du Secteur Financier (the “CSSF”), the supervisory authority of the Luxembourg financial sector. The firm has, amongst others, the status of Registrar Agent, Corporate Domiciliation Agent, Administrative Agent of the financial sector and Client Communication Agent. Radices is a niche player providing back office solutions to the Luxembourg alternative investment sector and its investors.

Luc Vuurmans, Managing Director of VBK+CO said “The acquisition is part of VBK+CO’s growth plan to expand its business in carefully selected jurisdictions to deliver a broader and stronger range of fund administration and corporate services, addressing the needs of fund management groups and international investors”.

The current management of Radices is composed of Gustave Stoffel and Jean Martin Stoffel. They will bring to VBK+CO their extensive experience within the Luxembourg market and expand the Luxembourg capabilities further in the future.

Dave Bos, Managing Director of VBK+CO commented “As we grow and expand our operations, we need to be where our clients want to do business. Luxembourg is that place and therefore constitutes a natural extension for us. It will be a key part of our network and an important hub for us to provide fund administration and corporate services”.

“We are very excited about our new opportunities with VBK+CO” said Jean Martin Stoffel, CEO of Radices. “We now offer through our association with VBK+CO on a global scale, unequaled experience and professionals in alternative assets, administration, compliance, accounting and financial statement assembly”.

The transaction has been approved by the CSSF and the firm in Luxembourg is now operating under the new name Radices VBK+CO (Luxembourg) SA.

About VBK+CO

VBK+CO has offices in Amsterdam, Geneva, Sofia, Mumbai and The British Virgin Islands and strategic partners in the UK and the USA. The firm is rendering fund administration, accounting, compliance and corporate governance services to investment funds, family offices and corporate clients. VBK+CO administers in excess of USD 12bn in investment funds and for family offices, representing a variety of strategies including long only, hedge fund, private equity, CTA and “fund of funds”.

VBK+CO is regulated by the Dutch Central Bank in The Netherlands, by the CSSF in Luxembourg and by the Financial Services Commission in the British Virgin Islands. The company has in place, on all its processes, an ISAE 3402 Type II audited by Deloitte. ISAE 3402 is a global assurance standard for reporting on controls at a service organization.

About Radices

Radices is a Professional of the Financial Sector in Luxembourg. Its principals have acquired over 40 years’ experience in the Luxembourgish financial sector and specialize in administration services offered to international investors, promoters and family offices active in the securities market, as well as in real estate and private equity management.

The firm was established in 2008 and is supervised by the Commission de Surveillance du Secteur Financier (CSSF), the supervisory authority of the Luxembourg financial sector.

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VBK+CO expanding with Kirchner & Partners

VBK+CO grows its footprint by expanding its practice with New York and Amsterdam based Kirchner & Partners 

Amsterdam March 1, 2017 

VBK+CO, a provider of accounting, fund administration, compliance and corporate governance services to financial institutions, investment funds, family offices and corporate clients announced today that it has formed an alliance with Kirchner & Partners.

Kirchner & Partners supports multinational companies, primarily headquartered in the USA to set-up operations or to naturally transition their Dutch legal entities into their own global organization, whereby key functions like domiciliation (registered address) and management will be taken in-house. Kirchner & Partners assists multinational companies to increase the level of substance, control, integrity and governance of their Dutch entities.

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VBK+CO formed joint venture with O’Connor Davies

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VBK+CO grows its footprint by expanding its Fund Administration practice with New York based, PKF O’Connor Davies, LLP

Geneva March 1, 2016 – VBK+CO, a fast growing third party fund administration company, announced today that it has formed a joint venture with O’Connor Davies Administration, LLC, a subsidiary of PKF O’Connor Davies, LLP headquartered in New York, United States of America. The move adds significant experience in the family offices, endowments and private foundations sector to the VBK+CO team, which already provides a robust fund administration and compliance offering. PKF O’Connor Davies’ knowledge and expertise will increase VBK+CO’s footprint and solidify the firm as an important player in the investment fund industry.

Luc Vuurmans, Managing Director of VBK+CO said “We are very excited about our new opportunities with PKF O’Connor Davies, we now offer on a truly global scale, unequaled experience and professionals in alternative assets, administration, compliance, accounting and financial statement assembly.”

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Strong Gains Swiss Fund Market

The Swiss Funds & Asset Management Association SFAMA issued the following media release:

Fund Market Statistics – July 2015

Strong gains once more on the Swiss fund market

Basel, 20 August 2015 – In July 2015, the volume of assets placed in the investment funds covered by the statistics compiled by Swiss Fund Data AG and Morningstar stood at some CHF 894 billion, an increase of around CHF 25 billion or 2.8% month-on-month. The net inflows totaled CHF 3.5 billion.

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News on UCITS

Sales of UCITS posted net outflows of EUR17 billion in June, compared to net inflows of EUR36 billion in May, according to the latest investment funds factsheet from the European Fund and Asset Management Association (EFAMA). 

This turnaround in net flows can be attributed to large net withdrawals from money market funds during the month.

Long-term UCITS (UCITS excluding money market funds) registered reduced net inflows of EUR18 billion, down from EUR51 billion in May.

Bond funds experienced a turnaround in net flows posting outflows of EUR7 billion, compared to net inflows of EUR9 billion in May.

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AIFMD – Switzerland’s Efforts have been positively acknowledged by ESMA

The Swiss Funds & Asset Management Association (“SFAMA”) advised its members on August 4, 2015 as follows:

On 30 July 2015 ESMA published its Advice in relation to the application of the AIFMD passport to non-EU AIFMs and AIFs (ESMA Advice) and its Opinion on the functioning of the passport for EU AIFMs and the national private placement regimes (ESMA Opinion).

ESMA Advice

In opting for a country-by-country assessment of the potential extension of the marketing passport, ESMA was of the view that there was only a sufficient level of information available on six jurisdictions; namely the US, Guernsey, Jersey, Hong Kong, Switzerland and Singapore.

ESMA concluded that no obstacles exist to the extension of the passport to Guernsey and Jersey, while Switzerland will remove any remaining obstacles with the enactment of pending legislation. No definitive view has been reached on the other three jurisdictions (Hong Kong, Singapore and USA) due to concerns related to competition, regulatory issues and a lack of sufficient evidence to properly assess the relevant criteria.

Therefore, ESMA advises the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission that there will be no significant obstacles impeding the potential application of the AIFMD passport to Switzerland, upon the enactment of the amendments to SESTA including the provisions on cooperation. The new version of SESTA adopted by the Parliament in June is due to enter into force on 1 January 2016.

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VBK+CO: ISAE3402

In February 2015 VBK+CO obtained an unqualified (ISAE) 3402 Type II Certification.

VBK+CO have been awarded the International Standard on Assurance Engagements (ISAE) 3402 Type II Certification for internal controls and effective functioning over a defined period of time relating to fund accounting, investor relations services and the related IT controls.

CH: Swiss Funds and Asset Management Association – Statistics update 28 Feb 2015

The Swiss Funds & Asset Management Association (“SFAMA”) announced that as at 28 February 2015, the volume of assets placed in the investment funds covered by the statistics compiled by Swiss Fund Data AG and Morningstar stood at just under CHF 870 billion, an increase of around CHF 44 billion month-on-month. The net inflows totaled more than CHF 8 billion.

The volume of assets entrusted by investors in Switzerland to the fund industry came to CHF 868.0 billion in February 2015 (January 2015: CHF 824.2 billion). “The marked gains on
the equity markets saw fund volumes increase by some 5.3% in the month under review. The net inflows of money also persisted, with virtually all fund categories profiting from this. Even bond funds continued to enjoy inflows. This is likely to change soon since the historically low interest rates can scarcely satisfy the return requirements of many institutional investors any longer,” explained Mr. Markus Fuchs, CEO of SFAMA.

By comparison, the figures for selected indexes in February 2015 were as follows (January 2015 in brackets): Dow Jones 5.64% (-3.69%), S&P 500 5.49% (-3.10%), EURO STOXX 50 7.39% (6.52%), and SMI 7.51% (-6.55%). The CHF lost 2.71% against the EUR, and 0.21% against the USD.

Net new money totaling some CHF 8.1 billion was invested in funds in February 2015. Equity funds posted the strongest inflows (CHF 4,211.4 million), followed by bond funds (CHF 3,144.8
million), and asset allocation funds (CHF 1,238.4 million). The only categories to record net outflows were money market funds (CHF 911.5 million), and commodity funds (CHF 217.3 million). There were no changes in the ranking of the most popular asset classes: equity funds 40.92%, bond funds 30.91%, asset allocation funds 12.45%, and money market
funds 7.01%.

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VBK+CO: ISAE 3402 / SSAE 16 Certification

ISAE 3402 / SSAE 16

International Standard on Assurance Engagements (ISAE) No. 3402 is a standard issued by the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) and Statement on Standards for Attestation Engagements (SSAE) No. 16 is a standard issued by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).

The scope of the ISAE 3402 standard is: “to provide a report for use by user entities and their auditors on the controls at a service organization that provides a service to user entities that is likely to be relevant to user entities’ internal control as it relates to financial reporting” (IAASB).

SSAE 16 was built upon the ISAE 3402 framework and the standards are essentially the same with a number of deviations. At VBK+CO, as a global service organization, we find it important to comply with both standards. VBK+CO received an unqualified Type I certification issued by Deloitte Risk Services BV.

We are currently in the Type II testing period and we anticipate to obtain full Type II certification, based on calendar year 2014, early 2015. We will update this blog to keep you posted of the latest developments.

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BVI: VBK+CO Fund Services (BVI) obtains Investment Business License

We continue to see a need from both Latin America and U.S.-based fund managers for offshore administrative services. To meet with this demand and to provide a solution in the same time zone out of one of the leading jurisdictions for funds, VBK+CO successfully applied for an Investment Business License in the British Virgin Islands to provide fund administration services to mutual funds. The BVI Financial Services Commission issued the license to VBK+CO Fund Services (BVI) Ltd. on June 18, 2014.

Mr. Phillip Fenty and Mr. Luc Vuurmans serve as board members of VBK+CO Fund Services (BVI) Ltd.

  • Phillip Fenty is a citizen of the British Virgin Islands and a local business owner. Having worked for many years for Barclays Bank and an accounting firm now belonging to the BDO group of companies, Phillip is experienced both in banking and accounting. He was appointed as a member of the inaugural Board of Commissioners of the B.V.I. Financial Services Commission and continues to serve in that capacity.
  • Luc Vuurmans is a managing partner of VBK+CO and has over 25 years of experience in the provision of administrative services for investment funds. Luc’s complete resume can be found on our website (www.vbkservices.com/our-team/).

In addition to providing administration services from the Netherlands, where VBK+CO Fund Services (Netherlands) B.V. is regulated and supervised by the Dutch Central Bank, we are pleased that we are now able offer to our clients an additional solution from the British Virgin Islands.