404

Sorry, we can't seem
to find the page you
are looking for.


Recently Added

10-Dec-2019
Walkers Leads Chambers Asia Pacific Lawyer Rankings

Walkers is pleased to announce that it has retained its top tier ranking for 'Offshore' legal services in the 2020 Chambers and Partners Asia-Pacific guide. The commentary includes:

"The firm is described by clients as 'a top-class firm,' while another source comments that they are 'stellar,' adding: 'They are dedicated and responsive. We use Walkers when we know that issues are not straightforward, and can rely on them to understand the complexities of the transaction and also give good, considered advice'."

Walkers also received a jurisdiction-leading nine lawyer rankings, four more rankings than the next Asia-based offshore law firm.

Walkers' Singapore managing partner John Rogers commented: "I am delighted to see that the hard work performed by our practices across the Asian region has been recognised by this leading legal directory."

Hong Kong managing partner Andy Randall said: "We are pleased to see further independent feedback that confirms our position at the very top of the Asia market for offshore legal advice."

Notable practitioners

  • Andy Randall heads the Hong Kong office as managing partner. He has extensive knowledge of handling a wide range of offshore capital markets work, including securitisation, secured note programmes and derivatives matters.

  • Denise Wong is a well-known practitioner based in Hong Kong, and is described by one client as a "very responsive and knowledgeable lawyer." She advises on all aspects of hedge funds and private equity funds as well as handling M&A and capital markets transactions.

  • James Gaden is praised by one client as an "extremely respected lawyer" with a "stellar reputation in the Japanese financial community." He has extensive experience of advising the investment funds industry on fund formation and structuring as well as investment work.

  • John Rogers is highly reputed in the market as a "very confident, senior lawyer" who heads the firm's finance and corporate team. Managing partner of the Singapore office, he has a wealth of experience in finance and corporate transactions.

  • Kristen Kwok is a Hong Kong-based practitioner who is gaining increasing recognition in the market. She specialises in advising major financial institutions on asset finance, capital markets and structured finance.

  • Laura Rogers is based in Singapore and specialises in private equity, hedge funds, joint ventures and general corporate advice. She is recognised by an interviewee as a "proactive and commercial lawyer," and they add: "It is an absolute joy to work with her."

  • Singapore-based Thomas Granger has experience of handling hedge funds and private equity transactions and advises clients on public and private offerings in Japan. He also offers fund formation and general corporate advice to investment managers. Commentators find him "well regarded" and consider him "one of the top names for Japan work."

  • Timothy Haynes heads the firm's restructuring team and is heralded by interviewees as "a good operator who is active in the market." He has a focus on commercial litigation and insolvency matters under Hong Kong and Cayman Islands law.

  • Hong Kong finance partner Paul Aherne is also ranked as a recognised practitioner.


09-Dec-2019
Walkers Senior Counsel Named One of the Top Three Young Employment Lawyers in Europe

Walkers Senior Counsel Daniel Read has been named one of the top three young employment lawyers across Europe by Euromoney Legal Media Group.

Daniel, a Jersey Advocate who leads Walkers' Jersey employment law team, is one of three lawyers named, along with Danielle Pinedo, a partner in Baker McKenzie's Amsterdam office, and Anne Roux-Fouillet, a senior associate in Schellenberg Wittmer's Geneva office.

The prestigious Euromoney Legal Media Group Europe Rising Stars Awards are decided from submissions from lawyers across more than 90 jurisdictions, which are then validated, reviewed and researched by the Euromoney team to arrive at a three-person list.

The winners are the best lawyers under the age of 40 across Europe – there is only one other Channel Islands lawyer on the list of 186 practitioners, and the list is dominated by lawyers from Magic Circle firms in London and the rest of the major European legal centres.

Walkers partner Louise Hall, who leads the Channel Islands employment law team, said: "This is a tremendous accolade for Dan, who is an outstanding lawyer, and who is deservedly building a stellar reputation for himself in the market.

"We continue to invest in growing our Channel Islands presence – Dan has been part of our team for a little over a year as one of a group of senior recruits across our legal practice disciplines, and he is making a big difference to our combined Jersey, Guernsey and Ireland employment team."

09-Dec-2019
Happy Holidays 2019

Happy Holidays 2019! 

We would like to wish our clients and friends a safe and happy holiday season and a prosperous new year.

 

Walkers is proud to have supported many great causes throughout the year, some of which are named below, and we also wish them every success over the holiday season and into the new year.

 

  • ActionAid
  • Basis Point
  • Box of Hope
  • Breast Cancer Foundation
  • Business to Arts
  • BVI Diabetes Association
  • BVI Humane Society
  • Cancer Clinical Trust
  • Capuchin Day Centre
  • Cayman Arts Festival
  • Central Caribbean Marine Institute
  • Charities Trust
  • CI Hoopsters
  • CI Humane Society
  • CI Veterans Association
  • Concern
  • Co-Operation Ireland
  • Crumlin Children's Hospital

 

  • Cry Ireland
  • Darndale Belcamp Integrated Childcare
  • Family Support Network
  • Focus Ireland
  • Great Ormond Street Hospital
  • Guernsey Alcohol and Drug Abuse Council
  • Guernsey Boys Brigade
  • HandsOn Hong Kong
  • Hart for Hearts
  • Hedge Funds Care / Help for Children
  • Hurricane Relief
  • Irish Cancel Society
  • Kids at Sea
  • LauraLynn Children's Hospice
  • LIFE
  • MacMillan Cancer Support
  • Maison du Quetteville
  • Mentoring Anointed Leaders Everywhere



 

  • National Gallery of the Cayman Islands
  • National Trust for the Cayman Islands' Blue Iguana Recovery Programme
  • Paws
  • Peter McVerry Trust
  • Pursuit of Excellence
  • Salvation Army
  • Seeing is Believing
  • Smile Asia
  • Special Needs Foundation Cayman
  • Team Hope
  • The Blood Bank
  • The Hope Foundation
  • The Little Museum of Dublin
  • The Tennis Federation of the Cayman Islands
  • Tree of Joy
  • Virgin Islands Cancer Society
  • Young Athletes in Action


01-Dec-2019
Conference Poll Shows Nearly Half of Attendees Aware of Sexual Harassment in Their Workplace

Nearly half the attendees at Walkers' recent workplace culture conference were aware of sexual harassment incidents having taken place at their work.

Attendees at the events held in Jersey and Guernsey last month were asked a series of questions which suggest that just under half were aware of sexual harassment in the workplace, but that some of the incidents had not been investigated, and that, when investigations had been conducted, this was typically done internally.

The audiences were largely HR professionals who would normally be aware of reported incidents and investigations within their organisations.

Aggregated figures for the Jersey and Guernsey audiences showed that:

• 45% were aware of sexual harassment having taken place
• 37% were aware of sexual harassment having been investigated
• 30% were aware of external investigators having been appointed


The results varied slightly between the Islands – Jersey attendees were more likely (49% compared to 41% in Guernsey) to be aware of sexual harassment, more likely (42% compared to 32% in Guernsey) to have been aware of an investigation, and more likely (37% compared to 24% in Guernsey) to be aware of an external investigator being appointed.

Senior Counsel Sarah Ash, a member of Walkers' Channel Islands employment law team specialising in advising on discrimination and harassment, said: "These are interesting results – we very deliberately did not define sexual harassment in our poll, so the incidents known to 45% of our audience could range from a one off inappropriate comment to criminal assaults.  As employment law practitioners, we at Walkers don't see many references from clients about sexual harassment, whether from employers looking to investigate, complainants or people accused, which suggests these incidents aren't being escalated into formal legal complaints.

"It is of particular concern to me that not all incidents of sexual harassment are being investigated.  There is likely to be a variety of reasons for this however failure to investigate known incidents of sexual harassment is undoubtedly exposing companies to employment risk and will have a negative impact on employers workplace culture.

"Responses to the question on external investigators indicate that using an external investigator is clearly the exception rather than the norm. Whilst many investigations can be handled internally my experience is that you typically see external investigators appointed when one of the people involved is senior and an external investigator is required to ensure that there is an independent and fair process which can be reassuring for the parties involved.  In addition, I have seen employers request independent investigations to look into workplace culture and practice so that they can address any issues proactively before they develop into more serious complaints. 

"Having practised in this area in London for more than ten years, sexual harassment has become a regulatory issue not just an HR one, and regulators including the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA), and the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) are taking it very seriously.  Consequently UK employers are now taking it very seriously too, with many raising awareness in their organisations through training and implementing clear policies, encouraging employees to speak up so that issues can be addressed swiftly and taking a zero tolerance approach to this type of behaviour.

"It's clear that both Guernsey and Jersey will need to move in the same direction."



29-Nov-2019
Walkers Sponsors The Little Museum of Dublin

Walkers Ireland office is delighted to announce a new conservation partnership with The Little Museum of Dublin to help secure the future of the collection, including a treasured first English edition of Joyce’s masterpiece Ulysses.

Sarah Costigan, Deputy Director at the Little Museum commented “Preserving the collection and making it available for the use and enjoyment of the public is at the heart of the museums mission. We are proud to partner with Walkers to ensure our collection will be researched, displayed and preserved for future generations.”

Garry Ferguson, Managing Partner of Walkers Ireland office said at the launch, “Walkers is delighted to support the Little Museum of Dublin by sponsoring one of its most treasured artefacts, a first English edition of 'Ulysses' by James Joyce. At Walkers, it is important to us that we promote the arts within our local community and our commitment to the Little Museum of Dublin, which celebrates the events and people who have shaped our city, hopefully demonstrates this. ”

The Little Museum of Dublin is the people's museum of Dublin. Located on St. Stephens Green, it is a Georgian town house owned by Dublin City Council, the museum chronicles the history of the capital in a multi-award-winning collection.

 

Little Museum Partnership Launch

 



28-Nov-2019
Walkers Fundamentals 2019 Hedge Fund Trends - Part 2

From our vantage point as advisers to many of the world’s top investment fund managers and financial institutions, broad market forces flow through to our instructions, and ultimately drive many of the terms of the funds we advise.

In this four-part series we look at the current themes we have noticed in the investment funds market. Parts one (here) and two focus on Hedge Funds and parts three (here) and four explore Private Equity.

All data, unless referenced, is taken from Walkers' in-house investment funds survey.

REDEMPTION TERMS – HARD LOCK-UPS INCREASE THEIR LEAD

More funds are using lock-ups at launch, up to 44%, which represents an increase from the longer term trend in prior years (about one-third). While one year lock-ups remain the most common (47%), 43% employed lock-ups of 18 months or greater. Two-thirds of lock-ups are ‘hard lock-ups’ – i.e. investors cannot redeem at all (as opposed to ‘soft lock-ups’ where redemptions are possible but subject to a fee for the benefit of the fund).
The increasing use of gates in fund terms continued this year, with 29% of funds surveyed using a gate to manage redemptions.

BOARD COMPOSITION

It is market practice to appoint independent directors to the board of a corporate hedge fund. However, while most new funds still appoint independent directors (69%) the slowing of this trend, which we first identified in our 2017 survey, has continued this year. Independent representation is still below our pre-2017 observed levels. While the drivers for this trend are diverse among managers, one explanation is the increasingly institutional managers of Cayman funds with advanced internal control and governance processes, coupled with oversight from other independent service providers. Other funds posit that they employ novel strategies and trading approaches where independent oversight may be regarded as less essential (which may or may not be widely accepted). For others, there are simple sensitivities to costs at the start-up phase.

Board Composition


The selection of an appropriate board continues to be a critical process on which managers should focus, and guiding managers through these processes remains a key part of our role as Cayman counsel. As Walkers does not offer directorship services to investment funds, we remain unaffiliated with any particular service provider.

FUND TERMS IN ACTION: NAVIGATING STRESSED SITUATIONS

Beyond fund launches, this year’s industry commentary has noted several high profile and long-established funds commencing their wind-down, or electing to turn into family offices to manage the principals’ capital. In addition, market forces and investors’ own allocation decisions have seen many funds dealing with redemptions from their largest investors, or otherwise restructuring to position for expected market turbulence or in response to global regulatory developments.

While all of these situations have their own features, as adviser to many of these funds Walkers has seen some clear trends emerge.
Funds with clear, flexible documentation have more options in addressing unforeseen stresses. Managers that maintain a close and open relationship with their investor base can propose restructurings or other solutions that may not be directly contemplated by the fund’s documents. Communication is key: managers that engage early with investors, directors and legal counsel can often leverage the experience of each to implement effective solutions.

WHAT’S IN STORE FOR 2020?

We have a lot to watch in 2020. Given the continued global uncertainties and the volatile global economic and financial environment, managers and their funds will continue to position themselves for further turbulence. This may well be beneficial for the industry – after years of fighting a broadly rising market, dislocations in asset prices should be opportune times for hedge funds, and investor sentiment surveys do not suggest a material allocation away from the sector. As ever, our role in this broader picture is to help our clients put themselves and their funds in the best position to adapt to the unforeseeable.