QIAIF Loan Origination: Another First for Maples and Calder

13 March 2015

The Irish office of leading international law firm, Maples and Calder, is delighted to announce that the firm recently became the first law firm to advise an Irish authorised Qualifying Investor Alternative Investment Fund ("QIAIF") which will originate loans.

On 18 September 2014, the Central Bank of Ireland ("CBI") made revisions to the AIF Rulebook to allow loan origination to occur within QIAIFs in recognition of the demand for non-bank sources of finance.  Connect-Ireland Diaspora Loan Fund plc (the "Company") was authorised by the CBI on 3 March 2015 as the first loan origination QIAIF.

The objective of the Company is to contribute to the recovery to the Irish economy through the creation and/or protection of employment in companies registered in and operating throughout Ireland.  The Company intends to achieve its investment objective through loan origination and engaging in all activities typically associated with lending transactions, which activities include participation in loans, participation in lending and the handling of assets which are realised as security.

"We are delighted to have advised Connect-Ireland Initiative Limited on the first loan origination fund to occur within a QIAIF and we wish them every success" commented Carol Widger, Investment Funds Partner in Maples and Calder's Dublin office.  "It is clear that Maples and Calder continues to set the bar on unique and ground-breaking deals on both a domestic and international basis."

The QIAIF deal, which was led by Carol Widger and ably supported by Deirdre Mcllvenna, follows a series of notable firsts for Maples and Calder's Dublin office, including advising on the establishment of the first Irish investment limited partnership for private equity; authorisation of the first cross-border AIFM in Ireland and the first Irish UCITS authorised by the CBI to invest 100% in China A Shares under China's RQFII Scheme.

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