Sidley lawyers in the United States, Europe and Asia have deep involvement in the global investment funds industry and are recognized leaders in advising managers and other market participants in connection with a wide range of traditional and alternative investment funds. We provide sophisticated global legal counsel to managers of mutual funds, registered closed-end funds, hedge funds, private equity funds, venture capital funds, commodity pools, separately managed accounts, CDOs/CLOs, real estate funds and “family offices.”
Sidley provides proactive advice regarding registration, regulatory and compliance issues under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, Investment Company Act of 1940, Commodity Exchange Act, USA PATRIOT Act and ERISA, as well as the impact under Dodd-Frank of related Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and state regulations on both registered and unregistered advisers. Our offices outside the U.S. similarly advise clients across Europe and Asia with respect to adviser and fund-related issues and coordinate with our U.S. offices to assist global financial institutions in meeting U.S. regulatory requirements and standardizing their adviser compliance programs.
Sidley is at the forefront in new product development, participating in the structuring, organization, registration, servicing and/or distribution of a wide array of innovative funds, derivative instruments and structured investment products, including:
- Representing DB Commodity Services LLC in the initial registration of $2 billion in units in PowerShares DB Commodity Index Tracking Fund, the first commodity pool to be listed on a U.S. securities exchange (AMEX).
- Advising the underwriters in Fortress Investment Group’s $634.3 million initial public offering. Fortress was the first global alternative asset manager listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
- Counseling the manager in connection with establishment of a $2 billion MTN program for, and the first issuance under the program by, Citadel Finance Ltd. This offering was the U.S. hedge fund industry’s first “permanent capital” transaction.
In recognition of this cutting-edge work, Sidley is consistently recognized by our clients, peers and the investment management industry as providing outstanding client service and market-leading advice. Sidley was named “Investment Funds Team of the Year for the U.S.” by Chambers and Partners in 2013 and 2008 and is one of two firms to have been recognized as a top-tier Investment Funds – Hedge Funds firm in Chambers USA since the inception of the category rankings in 2008, including in the current 2012 rankings. Additionally, Chambers has recognized the firm as a leading Investment Funds – Registered Funds firm during the same time period.Sidley was also named “Best North American Law Firm” in 2013 and 2011 by Hedgeweek, “Best Onshore Law Firm – Client Service” in 2012 by Hedge Fund Manager European Hedge Fund Services Awards, and “Best Onshore Law Firm in Asia (ex-Japan)” and “Best Onshore Law Firm in Japan” in 2011 by AsianInvestor.
Sidley lawyers work with investment manager clients to capitalize on growing trends in the fund formation area, including the increased use of funds that provide “seed” or “acceleration” capital to hedge fund managers, single-investor/single-relationship funds, and hedge fund and managed account “access” and “feeder” platforms. In addition, we help clients understand and manage their increased responsibilities under Dodd-Frank with regard to reducing dealer credit risk, diversifying prime broker and counterparty relationships, enhancing custody arrangements and procedures, and improving funds’ trading documentation.
The firm is ahead of the curve on the compliance side as well, advising investment fund clients regarding FINRA’s implementation of Rule 5131 imposing “anti-spinning” restrictions on IPO investment, the JOBS Act’s elimination of the prohibition on general solicitation and advertising in certain private offerings of fund interests, and the SEC’s increased inspection and enforcement efforts aimed at hedge fund managers. Our lawyers also continue to follow key developments in foreign markets such as new restrictions on short selling in several countries, the European Commission’s proposal of the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive, and proposed pilot programs that would permit foreign hedge fund managers to raise funds in China.