In 20101 the transfer of registered companies to and from other jurisdictions increased slightly in the Cayman Islands, but they remained lower than in 2008. According to company transfer information published in the Cayman Islands Gazettes, the number of company transfers out of Cayman is likely to remain below the 2008 figure of 62.
Currently 49 companies were moved to a new place of registration outside the Cayman Islands, compared to 48 in 2009.
At the same time seven companies previously registered abroad were transferred to the Cayman Islands. This is higher than the total of four companies in 2009, but lower than the 13 companies that were moved to Cayman in 2008. A number of company transfers may yet be reported in the next two editions of the Gazettes.
Current numbers show a changing trend in terms of new destinations for company transfers. The most popular destinations are Luxembourg, Bermuda and Malta with 10, nine and six transfers, respectively. The favoured destination of 2009, Delaware, in contrast, saw a significant decline from 12 to five companies transferred.
Ireland, which recently changed its company regime to facilitate the transfer of funds from other jurisdictions and in particular from the Cayman Islands, did not see a single transfer in 2010 according to the Gazettes.
In previous years several companies, including Garmin, Seagate or XL Capital, named concerns over potential US tax legislation targeting companies based in offshore financial centres and the negative publicity surrounding low tax jurisdictions as reasons for their transfer out of Cayman, notably to the EU.
Other Hong Kong based companies, for example National Arts Holding, Brilliant Arts Multimedia Holding and Info Communication Holdings, redomiciled from the Cayman Islands to Bermuda in order to effect capital reorganisations more quickly. The companies noted that capital reductions could be carried out between eight and 12 weeks faster by transferring to Bermuda, where such a move does not require court approval, than to apply than to apply for the approval of the transaction with the Cayman Islands Grand Court.