Appleby’s seminar “Breaking Bad: When Funds Turn Toxic” was held on 2 April at the Old Government House Hotel, St Peter Port, Guernsey. The seminar was moderated by Matthew Wrigley – Counsel, Corporate and Commercial and included senior members of Appleby’s Investment Funds and Fund Disputes teams.
Over 80 attendees listened to an expert panel discussion and case study involving a hypothetical distressed Guernsey investment fund, with each Appleby team member taking a different stakeholder’s perspective. The discussion covered a range of issues, from the creation of the Fund, its investment strategy and capital structure, through to the various options for seeking to restore value for investors and the duties of the fund’s directors in a distressed situation.
Matthew Wrigley commented “We tried to do something a bit different with this seminar – take our lawyers out of their comfort zones and have them portray the different characters in a distressed fund scenario. From my experience, it is only until you understand each perspective and competing interest that you can hope to offer any real solutions for clients who find themselves in this situation. We also wanted to ensure that the audience found the session both informative, as well as entertaining and, from the feedback that I received afterwards, we seem to have struck a chord. ”
“Anthony Williams, Counsel in Appleby’s Investment Fund Disputes team, added “When an investment fund finds itself in turmoil, very often the immediate impulse is to point the finger of blame, which can lead to costly legal proceedings with an uncertain outcome. Through the case study, we aimed to identify some alternative creative options for the audience, which can result in a positive outcome for the competing stakeholders, in what is usually a difficult, and highly-charged, environment.”