There are 3 Fast Track Application Regimes in respect of Guernsey regulated entities:
Qualifying Investor Funds
Registered Collective Investment Schemes
Fast Track Licence Application for entities acting in respect of Qualifying Investor Funds or Registered Collective Investment Schemes
Qualifying Investor Funds (“QIFs”)
Authorised open-ended and closed ended authorised schemes can apply as QIFs. Only Qualified Investors are permitted to invest in a QIF. A Qualified Investor is deemed able to evaluate the risks and strategy of investing in a QIF and to bear the economic consequences of investment in the QIF including the possibility of any loss arising from the investment.
In order to consider authorising the scheme the Commission must receive a copy of the application form (Form QIF), which must be signed by the proposed designated manager of the scheme. The form contains Warranties to the Commission from the proposed designated manager. (Refer to the Guidance on Qualifying Investor Funds below for further details).
The Commission attaches great importance to these warranties. It expects applicants to be able to demonstrate that they have documentary evidence to support the warranties given, and to be able to produce that evidence immediately should the Commission request it. Applicants who cannot substantiate their applications may find themselves excluded from participation in the Qualifying Investor Fund self-certification programme.
The Commission will declare the scheme authorised within three working days of receiving the Form QIF and the following documentation.
· Fully completed, signed Form APA/APB/APQ/APC (as appropriate) and Form GFA together with Forms PQ/PD in respect of controllers, directors and senior managers of the promoter and scheme (as appropriate);
· The fee as prescribed from time to time by Regulations made under Section 22 of the Law;
· Final versions of the scheme particulars, prospectus, offer document or equivalent, including the application form, subscription agreement or equivalent;
· Final version of the constitutive documents (that is the articles of incorporation, trust deed or limited partnership agreement);
· Final versions of all material agreements entered into by the scheme;
· For Class A and Class B open-ended schemes, a lawyer’s certificate. For Class Q open-ended schemes, a manager’s certificate;
· Evidence that the scheme has been incorporated (if a company) or otherwise established.
For full details of the QIF application process please refer to the Guidance on Qualifying Investor Funds, the link to which can be found here.
Registered Collective Investment Schemes
The rules which apply to Registered Collective Investment Schemes are The Registered Collective Investment Scheme Rules 2008. In order to consider granting the requisite registration to the Registered Collective Investment Scheme the Commission must receive a copy of the application form (Form REG), which must be signed by the proposed designated manager of the scheme.
The Form REG 2012 requires the proposed designated manager to make specific declarations. The Commission attaches great importance to these warranties. It expects applicants to be able to demonstrate that they have documentary evidence to support the warranties given, and to be able to produce that evidence immediately should the Commission request it. Applicants who cannot substantiate their applications may find themselves excluded from participation in the Registered Collective Investment Scheme self-certification programme.
In support of the application, the following documentation is required in addition to the Form REG:
Submission of fully completed Forms PQ/PD in respect of controllers, directors of the promoter and scheme (as appropriate);
Payment of the application fee required under the relevant fee regulations;
Final versions of the prospectus, offering document or equivalent; the application form, subscription agreement or equivalent;
the constitutive documents, that is the articles of incorporation, trust deed or limited partnership agreement, as applicable and all material agreements entered into by the scheme. Evidence that the scheme has been incorporated (if a company) or otherwise established.
The Commission will declare the necessary registration under the POI Law within three working days of receipt/resolution of all of the above issues.
For further details please refer to the Guidance on Registered Collective Investment Schemes, the link to which can be found here.
Submission of prospectus, constitutional documents and material agreements
In respect of Qualifying Investor Funds and Registered Collective Investment Schemes the Commission has dispensed with the requirement for applicants to submit certified true hard copies of the prospectus, offer document or equivalent, constitutive documents and material agreements and would encourage applicants to provide these documents in electronic format such as a CD-ROM or USB stick together with an original signed copy of the application form.
Fast Track Licence Application
A fast track licence application is only available for parties seeking to provide management services to Qualifying Investor Funds or Registered Collective Investment Schemes. All other licence applications will need to apply and be assessed under the Commission's standard application process.
In order to apply for a Licence under the POI Law using the Fast Track application process the Commission must receive a copy of the application form (Form FTL). The Form FTL requires the proposed administrator of the proposed licensee to make specific declarations. The Commission attaches great importance to these warranties and the standard of the documentation and information submitted in support of the licence application as referred to below. The Commission has a statutory duty in considering applications for licences under the POI Law and the submission of complete and accurate submissions, together with the relevant warranties will be used by the Commission in expediting the formal application process.
In support of the application, the following documentation is required in addition to the Form FTL:
a fully completed and signed Form RA/1 together will fully completed Forms PQ or Forms PD as appropriate for all relevant controllers, directors and managers.
all associated documentation and information as required by the Form RA/1
confirmation that the applicant has been incorporated or established (as appropriate)
documentary evidence, such as bank statement and Board minute, supporting the applicant's paid up share capital, together with the relevant directors' confirmation in respect of the applicant's financial resources provisions (as required under the relevant section of The Licensees (Capital Adequacy) Rules 2010).
a copy of the licensee's due diligence supporting the warranties in the Form FTL, together with the administrator's documented assessment of the fitness and properness of the applicant for a licence, to enable the Commission to focus its due diligence enquiries and consider the validity of the warranties provided. This documentation will not be returned to the administrator unless specifically requested.
If a promoter is already known to the Commission as a result of its relationship with an existing (or previous) Guernsey investment fund confirmation of that fact, together with written confirmation that the licensee holds up to date due diligence documentation meeting the requirements of the Guidance Document issued by the Commission dated October 2008.
payment of the application fee under the relevant fee regulations.
The Commission will formally consider the application for a licence within 10 business days of receipt of all the above. If any of the above documentation is missing from the application then the 10 business day period will not commence until all of the information/documentation required by the Form FTL has been submitted. Applicants will be advised of such shortly after receipt of the application by the Commission. Any minor queries resulting from the Commission's initial assessment of the application will be referred back to the Guernsey licensed administrator acting on behalf of the applicant within the 10 business day period. It is anticipated that in such cases the 10 business day period will be suspended and resumed upon resolution of the issue, rather than the 10 business day period having to be restarted upon resolution of the identified issue. However, the Commission reserves the right to restart the10 business day period if the nature or volume of enquiries so requires. Regard will be had to the timing of a restart to ensure that it is not to the detriment of other applications awaiting to be reviewed.
For further details please refer to the Guidance in respect of Fast Track Application Process the link to which can be found here.