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Entrepreneurs planning to establish a fund in Switzerland should keep in mind that the exclusive authority to regulate & oversee funds in this country rests with FINMA. They’ll be also required to ensure compliance with the self-regulation rules recognized by the regulator.

The timing & procedure under which funds are established depend on if they’re set up pursuant to Swiss or foreign laws.

Types of Funds

There’s several types of funds entrepreneurs can register:

  • FCPs & SICAVs - their investors can directly or indirectly sell shares at their NAV. Setting up an FCP in Switzerland requires managers & custodians to get FINMA’s authorization; FINMA must also approve a contract for fund establishment endorsed by a custodian. Establishing a SICAV in Switzerland, as well as approving its statutes & investment rules, must also be approved by FINMA.
  • LPs & SICAFs - their investors can directly or indirectly sell shares at their NAV. Registering a SICAF in the Confederation of Switzerland, including signing an LPA, including charter & investment documents, must also be approved by FINMA.

Foreign Funds

Funds that can be sold to unqualified investors are established as UCITS. Establishing an UCITS in Switzerland must be approved by FINMA. An application is to be filed electronically by a Switzerland-based representative, along with the required documents.

Directly/indirectly owning or acquiring an equity interest in management companies or CAMs requires getting approval. Those seeking to start a financial activity in Switzerland should keep in mind that this requirement isn’t applicable to qualified participation in portfolio management companies. Qualified participation is granted if:

  • individuals own no less than ten percent of shares; 
  • individuals may exert significant influence on the commercial activities of a financial institution in any other way.

Seeking to register a fund in the Confederation of Switzerland? Need advice on the regulation of funds in the Confederation of Switzerland? Please consider contacting IQ Decision UK.