GAIM Ops Cayman targets market experts

This year’s GAIM Ops Cayman has the expansive tag line of Shaping the Future through Rigorous Operational Due Diligence, Comprehensive Risk Management and Compliance and is set to be an invaluable event for those in the business looking to hear the very latest on this most topical of subjects. The Journal reports.

GAIM Ops Cayman, set to take place from 26 to 29 April at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman, is the largest hedge fund operational due diligence, compliance, and risk management event for market practitioners around the world, attracting over 500 delegates annually. And in light of the economic meltdown that has now turned into a deep recession, subjects under discussion have never been more relevant to an industry under attack from a slew of Bills currently emanating out of the US.

Darren Stainrod, head of Alternative Fund Services at UBS Global Asset Management (one of the three main sponsors of the event) says: “GAIM Cayman is a great event, bringing together influential investors and experts in hedge fund operational risk management. The event provides an unrivalled opportunity to network with industry professionals, and we fully support the goals of knowledge sharing and informative discussion. We are committed to the future of the alternative funds industry and are pleased to partner with GAIM to host an event that contributes to its development.”

Deloitte is another major sponsor of GAIM Ops 2009. Odette Samson, director within Deloitte’s Assurance & Advisory Services furthers, “We expect the conference to bring some thoughtful insight into what the industry is facing under the current market conditions and where to go from here.”

Ingrid Pierce, partner and head of Hedge Funds in the Cayman Islands at Walkers, another of the three main sponsors, gives her view on the importance of GAIM Ops Cayman:

“With its focus on operational due diligence and risk, which is at the forefront of everybody’s mind at the moment, this year’s GAIM Cayman conference is particularly timely.

“We are living in an era where investment portfolios are under increasing scrutiny. Hedge funds are no different and investors and market participants are doing whatever they can to minimise risk.

“We have witnessed a period of unprecedented market turmoil coupled with recent investment scandals, some of which have been attributed, incorrectly, to hedge funds. It is therefore critical that we learn from prior mistakes and that we are as prepared as we possibly can be, to deal with a new wave of regulation through compliance and the highest standards of corporate governance.

“The conference agenda promises to be of great interest. The panel discussions on the operational and legal aspects of managers suspending redemption rights will be of particular significance. Another highlight is the session on practical tools to protect funds against the risk of money laundering. The Cayman Islands recently strengthened its own anti-money laundering regime with the new Proceeds of Crime Law and the introduction of updated Guidance Notes issued by CIMA in December 2008.

“We are also looking forward to the session on valuation methodologies which features contributions from investment managers, auditors and legal counsel. This can be a difficult and technical area so we certainly expect to learn something.

“The final day of the conference will cover, among other things, the future of hedge fund regulation and will examine The President’s Working Group in the US, The UK Hedge Fund Working Group and other industry initiatives. This interesting and topical panel should ensure a lively end to the conference.”