Thursday, March 20, 2008

BVI Offshore Service Providers Launching New Services and Adding Corporate Officers

Harneys Corporate Services Limited, a trust company based in the British Virgin Islands, and the largest provider of administration services to the BVI Business Companies, has announced on March 14 the launch of a new Share Trust service in BVI. The Share Trust is to enable a simple, modern and cost-saving solution to succession planning involving shares in the BVI Business Companies. Its main point is automatic succession to the shares of the company and appointment of replacement directors in the event of shareholder's death or early incapacity.

By words of Harney's senior associate Zac Lucas, "Succession planning involving shares in a BVI Business Company was usually a complex and costly affair, involving lengthy legal documents and significant delays. The Share Trust was specifically designed to remedy these problems."

Some days later, Walkers, one of the leading global offshore law firms and the second largest offshore law firm in the BVI, announced that it has added three corporate lawyers in its BVI office. The firm invited new staff to cope with the increased volume of work in the British Virgin Islands in the spheres of corporate finance, mergers & acquisitions, investment funds, and private equity work.

The new BVI legislation, allowing for quick and flexible merger arrangement and available for both domestic and international mergers, led to an increased amount of mergers & acquisitions. As to Walkers' BVI office, it has been involved in several corporate deals for major global companies. To manage this work, the firm has invited Matthew Cowman and Stuart Baldwin who specialize in project and acquisition finance and corporate transactions, and Phillip Sacks - an advisor on a variety of investment funds, private equity, and general corporate and commercial matters. All these lawyers have worked with corporate and law firms in the UK, Australia, Bahrain and the Caribbean for more than 20 years.

Another sphere that benefited from the flexibility of the provisions of the BVI Business Companies Act are BVI investment funds and private equity funds. In response to this, Walkers established an Investment Funds and Private Equity Department in its BVI office with the doubled number of funds lawyers.

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