Business in brief

Harneys opens Singapore office

Law firm Harneys will open an office in Singapore on April 7. It will be the firm’s seventh office globally. Colin Riegels, head of Harneys’ banking and finance practice group, will relocate from Hong Kong to Singapore and will be joined by Hong Kong funds Partner Lisa Pearce.  

Peter Tarn, chairman of the executive committee, said Singapore is a key jurisdiction in terms of cross-border capital flows and private wealth in southeast Asia.  

“Harneys’ Asia practice has experienced explosive growth over the last couple of years, and I have every confidence that Colin and Lisa will be able to build upon that success story in Singapore,” he said. 

Asia Managing Partner Jonathan Culshaw added, “Colin and Lisa are extremely well regarded offshore practitioners and they have been a key part of our recent success in Asia. Colin’s knowledge of British Virgin Islands law, developed over more than a decade’s practice in the jurisdiction, is unmatched in Asia, whereas Lisa is one of the region’s most commercial and experienced offshore funds experts. Singapore is a market which makes extensive use of both offshore holding company and fund structures, and naturally complements their strengths.” 

The office will offer full offshore transactional services and open with six lawyers, including Allen & Overy Singapore alumni corporate counsel Shari Hawke and finance senior associate Richard Griffiths. 

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MCS is launching a new cloud-based service, enabling businesses to take advantage of the benefits of cloud computing while complying with the highest standards of data security, encryption and offshore compliance. 

“One of the key features we had in mind when we were coming up with the idea to launch the MCS Cloud is the data residency guarantee,” said CEO Chris Lopez. “This means that all of a client’s data remains in the Cayman Islands and will be 100 percent encrypted. I believe there are many firms in the Cayman Islands and other offshore jurisdictions who will require a residency guarantee as the new standard in cloud services going forward.” 

Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, where shared resources, software and information are provided to computers and other devices on demand.  

“Cloud computing is becoming a game changer in the IT industry. IT departments can spend up to 80 percent of their work week on day-to-day maintenance of their existing environment, which leaves little time for IT innovation,” said Jennifer Erickson, MCS client relationship manager.  

MCS will provide cloud services through a partnership with Calligo, such as Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Desktop as a Service (DaaS) and various Software as a Service (SaaS) offerings. 

As a result of a partnership with Calligo, firms will also be able to back up their data to other offshore jurisdictions with the same data residency and encryption guarantees in place. 

The MCS Cloud services will be introduced at its launch event at the Marriott on March 19 from 8-10.30am. Firms interested in attending can register by email at [email protected]  

Foreshore has received its ISO27001 certification for the third year. The globally recognized standard means that businesses using cloud services from Foreshore have independent verification and assurance that their data is as safe as possible.  

“As more clients begin to use cloud services for either lower cost disaster recovery solutions or day-to-day hosted business applications, the main concern they have is always security of data and jurisdiction,” said Foreshore’s Regional SVP, Polly Pickering, who is based in the Cayman Islands. 

“Although the ‘anywhere-access data’ that cloud services provide has significant advantages, it does make people nervous,” she added. 

Foreshore’s continued ISO27001 accreditation provides independent verification that Foreshore has the appropriate procedures to securely manage information security retaining confidentiality, integrity and availability of all data, protecting both its own and its customers’ information and data assets. 

The ISO27001 certification is achieved and maintained by following thorough external audits by an independent and internationally recognized body, such as the British Standards Institute. 

Recent figures highlight the importance of the data security to customers, Ms. Pickering noted. 

“Mimecast Offshore, one of our ISO27001 certified offerings, is widely used, with 43 percent of business mail flow in Cayman utilizing this platform,” she said. 

The Department of Commerce and Investment is looking for corporate sponsors for the second Cayman Entrepreneurship Day, which will take place April 10 at the Family Life Centre.  

Last year, more than 30 exhibitors showcased their products and services at the event, which included a small business expo, technical assistance workshops, face-to-face meetings with accomplished entrepreneurs, a platform for budding entrepreneurs to present their business ideas, and a cocktail reception and business networking event.  

Sponsors so far include the Department of Tourism, Cayman National Bank, Cayman Enterprise City, Davenport Development Ltd., and Mary Lou’s Fine Wine and Spirits.  

DCI Director Ryan Rajkumarsingh said, “We are delighted to have these sponsors on board. We are encouraging others who also share in our vision to invest in our community by assisting local businesses. We expect this event to be informative, and we look forward to seeing the vibrancy of our small business community on display.”  

Benefits of sponsoring this event range from company mentions in all event promotions to participation on the judges’ panel. For more information, contact Charmaine Moss at [email protected] 

Gina M. Berry has been appointed as Higgs & Johnson’s country managing partner in the Cayman Islands, with responsibility for the management and development of the Cayman office.  

Global Managing Director Oscar N. Johnson Jr. said it is refreshing to have an energetic, positive and dedicated woman of Ms. Berry’s caliber take on the mantle of leadership in a firm where she had already devoted much effort.  

The firm has offices in The Bahamas and the Cayman Islands. 

Offshore law firm and fiduciary group, Appleby, has advised NASDAQ OMX Stockholm-listed Hexagon AB on its US$200.5 million acquisition of Veripos Inc. 

Appleby acted as Cayman counsel on the acquisition with Cayman-based corporate/M&A partner Bryan Hunter leading the team, supported by associate Dylan Wiltermuth and counsel Anna-Lise Wisdom. The transaction closed on March 12. 

Hexagon is a global provider of design, measurement and visualization technologies.  

Silver Thatch Pensions this month is launching an online Pension Management Portal designed to streamline pension processes.  

The Web portal will enable human resource teams to safely and securely submit electronic enrollment and termination forms, as well as upload their contribution and identification records to a secure drop box.  

Brian Williams of Saxon, client services agent for Silver Thatch Pensions, said, “We’ve listened to plan members and employers about their frustrations with stacks of paper and time-consuming processes. This portal will eliminate these annoyances and make plan enrollment and reporting effortless.” 

The portal will replace all paper-based enrollment and termination processes for employers enrolled with Silver Thatch Pensions.  

Ahisha Bodden, president of the Cayman Islands Society of HR Professionals said, “We’re delighted to hear that Silver Thatch has implemented this new system and look forward to the convenience of this service, along with the added peace of mind knowing our staff’s records are secure.” 

For more information, call 943-777
0, email [email protected], or visit

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Cayman Islands hosted a seminar recently on the CI Aircraft Registry that focused on legislative requirements and processes related to registering an aircraft in Cayman.  

The seminar and training session attracted attendees from most of the large law firms and corporate management companies, financial firms and representatives of other statutory authorities and government departments.  

Government Minister Wayne Panton highlighted in his opening remarks the role of the aviation authority and its revenue contributions to the Cayman Islands government.  

Richard Smith, CAA’s director-general, said, “Our partners in the local legal and financial industries are vitally important to the CI Aircraft Registry as they interact and often help influence decisions on what jurisdiction an aircraft is to be registered in.”
The aviation authority’s data management Web portal, developed by Brac Informatics Centre and designed to facilitate aircraft operators and applicants of the CI Aircraft Registry, was also introduced. 

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