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BDA targets business from London

BDA CEO Ross Webber: Targeting London

The agency set up to drum up new business for Bermuda is to target London.

Bermuda Business Development Agency (BDA) CEO Ross Webber said legal firms and top financial services figures would be invited to a special think-tank next March.

Mr Webber added: “This will be supplemented by inviting UK influencers to the Regulatory Compliance Association symposium in April and to the Global Fund Forum in June of next year.”

He added: “We have researched and profiled the prime target of UK fund manager. We have created a profile of these targets and we working that pipe.”

And he said that the BDA would also go after the lucrative asset management industry — which, offshore, has been dominated by competitor the Cayman Islands in recent years.

Mr Webber revealed the charm offensive as he addressed a meeting of Hamilton Rotary Club earlier this week.

He said: “Company and fund registrations are increasing. In general, and I stress in general, companies are no longer shedding employees and many are adding to their staffing complement.

“Class A funds, which simply did not exist before, are increasing.”

Mr Webber added: “Our competitors, Cayman in particular, are paying attention and getting twitchy.

“International law firms want to set up here and the way we are now being received by the influencers of jurisdictional decision-making has certainly changed for the better.

“I can tell you that people want to deal with Bermuda.”

Mr Webber said afterwards said the London event would follow the same lines as a Bermuda summit last year, when US asset management lawyers were invited to the Island and met key figures, including representatives of the regulatory Bermuda Monetary Authority, lawyers and key advisers.

Mr Webber said: “We’re going to do the same thing, but go to London to do it.”

He told Rotarians: “My experience tells me that direct targeting and one to one pitching works. However, there is no magic elixir.

“Everyone wants a magic game-changing solution now that economic recovery comes over time and it comes with a lot of hard work, strategic planning and the deployment of human and financial resources.

“We are working our pipeline of targets and we’re working to persuade the influencers.”

He added: “We have pipelines of the most influential law firms, asset management firms auditors and advisers and have specifically targeted them to educate them on our revised value proposition.

“This has been done primarily in New York. This will continue in the coming year and we will expand this programme into Europe.”