The members of the Luxembourg Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (LPEA) gathered Monday evening in Luxembourg City to celebrate the New Year. The party was the occasion to pass the previous year in review, make a few announcements, disclose the association’s objectives for 2017 and have some fun.
The spirits were high with the news circulated last week that Carlyle and Blackstone, two major private equity firms, were shifting more of their operations from London to Luxembourg, a sign that the country is well-positioned in the post-Brexit competition for this industry and is increasingly recognized as a leading PE hub. This is precisely what LPEA aims to showcase with its landmark event “LPEA Insights: 360 GP View” to be held in Luxembourg on April 26 and announced during the evening. The local landscape continues to expand at an accelerated pace, forming a growing community of new players and operations which shift the market towards greater middle and front office activities.
Paul Junck, Managing Director of LPEA, summarized the activities and achievements of 2016 highlighting the growth of the association and its international promotional activities held in key markets such as the UK, the US, Germany, France and Switzerland. With 139 members today, evenly split between investors/ general partners and service providers, LPEA continues to grow and to strengthen its position as an active voice in Luxembourg’s financial sector. A voice that will soon be better supported with a newly hired Public Affairs Manager.
Regulation will be on top of the agenda according to Jérôme Wittamer, President of LPEA, “in a context of mounting uncertainty and unexpected political events, we see opportunities for Luxembourg to further solidify its competitive edge while keeping an eye on the darker clouds on the horizon”.
Within the regulatory agenda, Luxembourg private equity is actively following a number of key subjects:
- The AIFMD review, due to start later this year and for which LPEA will create an ad hoc working group of the Legal Technical Committee to address the 11 issues that have been identified as critical for the industry by Invest Europe.
- As MLD IV is due to come into force in June 2017, it has become apparent that the implementation is very burdensome for certain firms. The Legal Technical Committee will therefore assess the significance of MLD for member firms.
- As regards the EuVECA/EUSEF regulation, there have been negotiations from the Council and the European Parliament. LPEA has collaborated with ALFI to produce a common position paper to be sent to the EU Parliament.
- The tax agenda is heavy with BEPS and European initiatives such as ATAD becoming more and more a reality.
- Other national points such as the withholding tax, carried interest and VAT on directors’ fees. Keeping an attitude of constructive dialogue, LPEA intends to further increase the number and quality of its conversations with all stakeholders, both locally and abroad.
“LPEA will be busy again and with your support, make the Luxembourg ecosystem ever more competitive”. – Jérôme Wittamer, President of LPEA