Hedge fund acquisition.
Fortis Prime Fund Solutions, a hedge fund administrator and an arm
of Fortis Merchant Bank, has acquired Hedge Funds Services--the largest
fund administrator in the territory, reports The Virgin Islands Daily
News (March 14, 2006). Ruth Chadwick, director of investment business at
the BVI Financial Services Commission, said HFS has US$2.3 billion in
assets from 104 funds. An Advent Software survey found that the BVI
ranks second, overtaking Bermuda, with 9% of the global hedge fund
market (Bermuda has 7%). By the end of 2005, more than 2,500 private,
professional and public funds, most of which are hedge funds with an
estimated asset value of more than US$119 billion, operated in the
territory. Some 700 fund managers and administrators have been licensed
since the BVI Mutual Funds Act went into effect in 1996.