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11 April 2014

Aztec Group are the Real Deal in Fund Services

“Aztec's exceptional retention rate and detailed understanding of the commercial and regulatory issues gave the firm the edge."

Aztec Group have added another prestigious award to its collection for fund services, winning the Fund Administrator of the Year at the Real Deals Private Equity Award ceremony on 10 April in London, which recognises the best of European private equity.

A key criteria for this inaugural award was the fund administrator’s capability to deliver services that ensure fund managers are compliant with the new Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD). Aztec Group are very pleased to be already working with a number of clients, including Henderson Global Investors, Equitix, Altor Equity Partners, Graphite Capital and BlueGem Capital Partners on delivering depositary services that will ensure compliance with the Directive.

On the night, Real Deals commented, “Aztec’s exceptional retention rate and detailed understanding of the commercial and regulatory issues gave the firm the edge. As one GP said, “Aztec really cares about its clients and goes out of its way to understand their needs””.

Andy Brizell, Head of Depositary Services, commented, “We are delighted to have been recognised for our work in connection with the implementation of the Directive. Over the last few years we’ve spent a considerable amount of time tracking the development of this legislation and wherever possible, have argued for a pragmatic and intelligent application for industry. We’ve sought to reflect this approach in our depositary services offering by providing a low impact and proportionate service which is tailored to meet the needs of private equity, real estate and infrastructure managers and investors.”

In designing its Depositary Services offering the Aztec Group has built on its extensive experience of meeting materially equivalent depositary obligations in the Channel Islands since 2007. With an appreciation that one size does not fit all for fund managers the Aztec Group has developed two service models for delivering depositary services. These two services cover relationships where administration is outsourced and those where it is not, with processes that are ISAE 3402 accredited, tailored to dovetail into the clients existing operations.

The team at Aztec have monitored the development and implementation of the Directive closely since its original proposal in April 2009. Members of the Aztec Group’s in house legal team have written extensively on the subject and have liaised with and lobbied regulators (including the FCA) and industry bodies (such as the EVCA) during the transposition process in order to ensure a sensible application for industry in the UK.

James Bermingham, General Counsel at Aztec Group, said, “It was obvious that the AIFMD would reshape industry and we engaged quickly with key clients and intermediaries, industry associations, regulators and governments across the Group to understand the implications of the Directive and explain the rather niche-industry of private equity fund administration. We were in a privileged position to represent the concerns of our clients and feel very proud that these are now reflected in industry and regulatory guidance. We hope that the work undertaken by industry will improve understanding and ensure the better application of the AIFMD.”

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