Five days, three cities and over 850 attendees, with such numbers it was evident why the 2015 IFIA East Coast Roadshow was a resounding success.
The annual IFIA pre St Patrick’s Day exodus to the States saw a significant increase in numbers by US attendees over the three seminars which were held in Chicago, Boston and New York. Similar to previous years, the seminars provided US asset managers a tremendous opportunity to gain insight into hot topics impacting the Irish Funds industry. Moreover, there were excellent opportunities for the IFIA and its travelling members to further network with the US audience and demonstrate why Ireland truly is a domicile and servicing location of choice.
Key seminar topics included distribution, the impact of regulatory change and product trends. The events were very well received given that Irish IFIA member speakers imparted some valuable knowledge in all areas coupled with the fact that relevant panels held representation from both small and large US asset managers in each city. One common theme which emerged on tour "the key to success in a particular market depends on leveraging relationships with service providers with local market knowledge and insights". US managers confirmed that in their experience, partnering with Irish service providers has been a straightforward process as have dealings with the Irish regulator (Central Bank of Ireland). Furthermore it was evident that US asset managers continue to use Ireland as a preferred hub for establishing Exchange Traded Funds in Europe. In addition, anticipated growth in the alternative and UCITS product space is also expected due to the ever increasing global distribution fund reach. While there are some practical marketing restraints emanating from the EU AIFMD legislation, it is evident that the Irish business and regulatory environment combine to make Ireland a top choice for US asset managers when establishing product in Europe.
Tae Yoo, Managing Director of Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing Limited, also delivered a presentation on the Shanghai Hong Kong Stock Connect Scheme in both Chicago and New York which was well received. An interesting summary of the Chinese market, quota regimes, and investor eligibility was discussed in addition to an update on the anticipated Shenzhen connection which will provide full access to the Chinese A share equity market.
Fund Promoter Dinners were held in Boston and New York which afforded an excellent opportunity for friends from both sides of the Atlantic to mingle and socialise in historic surroundings which were enjoyed by all.
Overall the Roadshow was a great success and the IFIA look forward to further USA tours showcasing Why Ireland and what is has to offer. To view our picture gallery from the event please click here.
Rosaleen Carey, Director, International Tax Services, Asset Management, PWC