Enacted and in action
The ICAV Act 2015 became operational on 12 March 2015, followed just days later by the launch of Ireland’s first fund structure using an ‘Irish Collective Asset-management Vehicle’ (ICAV). The ICAV is a bespoke funds vehicle which incorporates the key features of Ireland’s existing funds vehicles to create a flexible and efficient structure.
The ICAV’s principal benefits are its ability to ‘check the box’ for US investors, its streamlined compliance and its operational versatility. Existing corporate funds can convert to an ICAV whilst retaining their track record; however, before doing so, they should conduct a cost-benefit analysis to ensure that any anticipated benefits justify the costs. Managers should also ensure that there are no unintended consequences either to the fund or its investors prior to conversion.
Central Bank of Ireland updates
To accommodate the new funds vehicle, the Central Bank of Ireland (CBI) has updated its website with the following:
- An updated AIF Rulebook;
- a tailored suite of forms which accommodate the CBI’s status both as the authorising agent for the ICAV (as is the case with all other funds), as well as its status as the ICAV’s registrar, in place of the Companies Registration Office (CRO) as is the case for all other corporate entities in Ireland. The forms include application forms for registration, forms applicable to post registration amendments and forms concerning mortgages and charges.
- An ICAV Q&A
The Q&A confirms that the CBI will issue a Registration Order for a new ICAV within two weeks from the date of receipt by the CBI of a complete application for registration. Individual Questionnaires (IQ) for holders of Pre-approved Control Functions (PCF Holder) are only required to be submitted as part of the submission of an ICAV’s application for authorisation under the ICAV Act rather than as part of an application to register an ICAV. In addition, a PCF Holder for an investment company is not required to submit a new IQ during the conversion to an ICAV as long as his/her circumstances have not changed since the CBI’s original approval. The Q&A also confirm that the CBI will issue further guidance to clarify certain aspects of the forms for the registration of charges.