Ireland's finance publication, with IFS news and analysis

Thursday, March 23, 2017

  • Automated loan pioneer Kabbage Inc sets up European HQ in Ireland, and FSI welcomes inflow of new fintech jobs
    Kabbage Inc., has chosen Dublin as the location for its European headquarters. Kabbage Inc is a portfolio company of US-based Reverence Capital partners and is a pioneer of automated lending (primarily small business loans) which it delivers to through its technology and data platform. And, welcoming the announcement of hundreds of new jobs by financial services companies Circle and Fenergo, Marc Coleman Financial Services Ireland, Ibec, Director said that strong jobs growth in the so-called FinTech sector point to the potential of Brexit to rejuvenate inner city areas in Ireland and help regional jobs growth.
  • Accenture showcases fintech start-ups at Citi's innovation lab in Dublin
    The six companies participating in Accentures FinTech Innovation Lab Accelerator programme for 2017 have been showcased at Citi's innovation lab in Dublin. Of the six companies that have been chosen to take part in the 12 week mentoring programme three will be mentored by Citi and based in its Dublin innovation lab.
  • Cronin: Insurance firms are not waiting for Article 50 to be triggered
    March 9th 2017: Sylvia Cronin, Director of Insurance Supervision at the Central Bank of Ireland says that insurers are not waiting for the UK Government to begin formal exit discussions with the EU and are already implementing post-Brexit location decisions. Cronin was speaking at a KPMG event where she said the Central Bank has been contacted by approximately 30 insurance companies since November with 5 already making applications and five more making it known they intend to apply for authorisation.
  • Legg Mason set to launch UCITS management company in Ireland to add to Brexit options
    10th March 2017: Baltimore-Maryland headquartered asset manager Legg Mason is to open a fund management company in Dublin to serve clients in the European Union after Brexit. Legg Mason's portfolio of management companies includes Edinburgh-based Martin Currie. Legg Mason is an active asset manager with over 360 investment professionals amongst its worldwide staff of 3,400. This will add to Legg Mason's AIFM in Dublin, Legg Mason Investments (Ireland) Ltd, which dates originally back to 1997.
  • Brian Hayes MEP calls for the Central Bank and Department of Finance to set up a regulatory sandbox, as UK and other EU states are doing
    March 9th 2017: It is time that the Central Bank, in collaboration with the Department of Finance, developed a regulatory sandbox for Irish financial firms to test new and innovative products before they go to market said Brian Hayes MEP today in an adddress at an FPAI conference in Dublin. 'The great thing about a sandbox is that small businesses who are unauthorised can test their ideas before they go through the long authorisation process.'
  • 'If we approach Brexit as a zero sum game, we will have a very difficult and disorderly outcome' - Minister Eoghan Murphy in video with Lord Jonathan Hill
    Lord Jonathan Hill, former UK EU Commissioner for Financial Stability, says that while he personally was a 'remainer' 'the thing has happened', and that the Brexit vote was not "an accident or a fluke" and he dismissed outright the idea of a second vote on the issue. Lord Hill is interviewed with the Irish Minister for Financial Services, Eoghan Murphy, in the House of Lords ahead of speaking at a Brexit Briefing in London for over 200 Financial Services sector attendees hosted by Irish law firm Matheson. The interview video can be seen on the Matheson Brexit Forum at, also hosted on the homepage (opposite).
  • Wm Fry M&A Review for 2016 sees deal values down, volumes up slightly, but Brexit a possible factor in second half slowdown
    3rd March 2017: William Fry's annual M&A Review in conjunction with Mergermarket, despite recording a falloff in deals volume in H2 2016, sees the level of M&A activity levels as having 'normalised'. The easing out of inversion deals has reduced deal values, but volume levels remained robust for the year as a whole with deal volume in 2016 up 3%, from 125 to 129 deals. The Brexit factor may have worked to inhibit incoming UK acquisition activity, because of the depreciation of sterling against the euro (certainly affecting overall deal values). On the other side, UK businesses may appear less attractive from a business proposition point of view to Irish acquirers, despite their relative cheapness, because of the brexit uncertainty cloud hanging over their trading outlook.
  • AIB's strong year puts it on a 22% 2017 upward profitability curve ahead of IPO
    2 March 2017: Irish banking's return to rude health was confirmed with AIB's results, published today, showing a surge in net interest margins and profitability in 2016, marked by a Q4 Net Interest Margin of a substantial 242bps, compared with a 2015 average of 197 bps indicating that if these margins were maintained for this year, AIB enters 2017 with a 22% profit impetus, as the Minister for Finance and chief shareholder signals the bank's return to the equity market. Its first shareholder dividend since 2008, of €250m proposed, will bring the payback to the state since it acquired control of the bank to €6.8bn.
  • Record year for Irish domiciled funds asset growth as assets in Irish-domiciled funds hit €2.1 trillion
    Funds figures for 2016 from the Central Bank of Ireland show record levels of assets and net sales in Irish domiciled funds, as well as record levels of assets in non-domiciled funds administered in Ireland. Assets in Irish-domiciled funds hit a record €2.1 trillion at the end of 2016 as a result of record net sales of €139 billion.
  • Finance Dublin Yearbook 2017 - post Brexit Edition
    The Finance Dublin Yearbook 2017 will be the first post Brexit edition - with over 100 new companies in the new publication, out in March, providing a comprehensive insight into the momentous changes for Ireland's FS industry of the UK decision to leave the EU. (Photo: the Irish Central Bank's new Brexit-ready headquarters, due to open in Dublin's financial district in 2017).
  • Irish Funds and Deloitte team up on blockchain
    2nd February 2017: Irish Funds is working with industry participants and Deloitte to develop a blockchain proof of concept for Regulatory Reporting. The project will focus on the Resident Investment Fund Returns (Money Market & Investment Funds Returns Reporting- MMIF) regulation and its aim is the design and development of a proof of concept leveraging blockchain and smart contract technology to create a platform for regulatory reporting accessible to the reporting entity as well as a regulator.
  • Standout corporate banking deals and transactions for 2016
    Finance Dublin asked a panel of Ireland's leading corporate bankers to detail their highlights for 2016. Highlight areas include project finance and PPPs; global M&A transactions; debt issuances; syndicated debt raises; private placements and refinancings. High demand for growth capital is also evident while corporates with strong credit ratings took advantage of favourable market conditions and low interest rates to issue bonds and notes.
  • Bankruptcy remote vehicles have a valuable role to play in EU Capital Markets Union and securitisation plans
    Gary Palmer CEO of the Irish Debt Securities Association provides an important overview of Ireland's securitisation industry. He also points to an interesting consequence of securitisation companies using trust structures for charitable purposes: "When the Trust has served its specified and limited purpose, it is wound up and when this happens there is usually a small residual left in the trust. With 1,400 such securitisation companies this provides an amount available for distribution and I'd personally prefer this distribution to go to local charities, where it wouldn't if an alternative type of trust was available".
  • Head of financial regulation, Cyril Roux to vacate post in April
    February 28th 2017: Cyril Roux, Deputy Governor (Financial Regulation) of the Central Bank is to vacate the position in April to join the private sector in September 2017. Mr Roux has been the lead financial regulator since October 2013. "The process for the recruitment of his successor will be announced in due course", the Central Bank said.
  • Legal Tech: Baker McKenzie to headquarter Artificial Intelligence innovation committee in Belfast
    The Baker McKenzie AI innovation committee is headquartered in Belfast and has members from Baker & McKenzie offices worldwide. They will address the question of how the firm may offer the legal services using self-learning AI software. One of the first opportunities explored is self-learning software for due diligence which could cut down time spent on DD tasks by 20 to 40%.
February 2017 Issue of Finance Dublin

Finance Dublin Yearbook 2016

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Corporate Banking Ireland 2016

Deals of the Year 2016


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