Hope for hedgies as vote on controversial law postponed

PRIVATE EQUITY dealmakers and hedge fund traders are hoping for a last-minute
reprieve after a crunch vote on tough new European rules was delayed until next month.

The European Commission and European Parliament have been unable to agree a final
draft of the Alternative Investment Fund Managers (AIFM) directive, which is set to
clamp down heavily on the two industries. The parliament is pushing for softer treatment of private equity-backed companies and a compromise on the controversial “third countries” law, which would stop EU investors putting money into non-EU funds.

Resistance by the council means a crucial parliamentary ballot on AIFM has been moved back from 21 September to some point in October.

Syed Kamall, a Conservative MEP who is fighting to lighten the directive, said: “I look forward to seeing what compromises the Belgian presidency comes up with before then. But my concern is, how balanced is the majority position in parliament?”

Simon Walker of the British Venture Capital Association said: “The terribly important thing is there should be no discrimination against companies owned by funds.”