Appleby: Bermuda Leads Offshore In Growth

December 17, 2013

Bermuda is the offshore jurisdiction that experienced the greatest percentage of growth in its register of companies in the first half of 2013, compared to the second half of 2012, according to Appleby.

A report from Appleby said, “In the first half of 2013, 538 new companies were registered in Bermuda, bringing the number of active companies on the Bermuda register to 17,622, a 5% increase over the number of companies on the register at end of 2012, according to the firm’s On the Register report, which provides insight and data on company incorporations in offshore financial centers.

“Bermuda also saw an 8% percent increase in the number of new company incorporations in the first half of 2013 when compared to the last six months of 2012 and a 16% increase over the number of new company incorporations in the first half of 2012. With this sustained growth, the registry is approaching pre-recession 2008 highs, the report found.

“Of the 538 new company registrations, 422 were exempted companies, 21 overseas companies and 95 local companies. The number of local companies registering has grown by 44% in the six month period, when compared to the second half of 2012.

“Bermuda has long been a leading jurisdiction for companies looking to incorporate offshore and this held true in the first half of 2013,” said Rory Gorman, Managing Director of Appleby Services [Bermuda] Ltd.

“Business sentiment in the U.S. market, which coupled with the Bermuda government’s proactive campaign to target international business, is driving much of the influx of new business to the jurisdiction.”

The jurisdiction is also seeing continued interest from the aircraft leasing niche – a Bermuda vehicle is required for each aircraft registration and commercial aircraft registrations remain steady and strong.

Additionally, Bermuda is benefitting more than other jurisdictions as the insurance sector outlook improves and is viewed as a key location from which to issue and list insurance-linked securities [ILS] such as catastrophe bonds, with considerable success.

Across offshore jurisdictions, there were 38,416 new offshore incorporations in the first six months of this year and the report found the total number of active companies listed on offshore registers is stabilising.

Within most offshore locations, the total number of companies listed on the local register has increased since the end of 2012. The number of new incorporations across the entire offshore region has fallen slightly compared with the previous six-month period but as the number of firms ceasing to trade has also dropped, this has allowed most registries to continue to grow. Many are approaching, or have even surpassed, their pre-recession peaks.

“The global economy appears to be stabilising, and we’re seeing the number of new company registrations rising in most offshore jurisdictions,” said Farah Ballands, Partner and Global Head of Fiduciary & Administration Services at Appleby. “It is also encouraging to note that the overall number of companies active on the offshore registers has gone up by 5% compared to pre-recession 2008.”

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