“Top 10 Bermuda Market Highlights Of 2017″

December 24, 2017

The Bermuda Business Development Agency has released a year end review of the top 10 Bermuda market highlights of 2017, which follows in full below.

1. Reputation

The BDA has taken a leading role to promote Bermuda’s record for quality, global compliance, and transparency. Some may seek to smear Bermuda’s reputation with misinformation, flawed economics and “fake news.” This year’s Paradise Papers, for example, failed to recognise the differences about Bermuda and our top-class reputation. We work with stakeholders to defend our good name, because we know our reputation is a key reason global businesses choose our jurisdiction.

2. Compliance

Bermuda became the first UK Overseas Territory to sign Country-by-Country Competent Authority Agreements with both the United Kingdom and United States. The agreements comply with Base Erosion and Profit Shifting [BEPS] tax-transparency standards set by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development [OECD]. France awarded Bermuda white-list status fulfilment of Country-by-Country reporting obligations. Bermuda was also declared “largely compliant” by the OECD Global Forum rating.

3. New business

The BDA continues to play a key role in on-boarding new companies, including start-ups and relocations. A big story this year has been the surge in formations of long-term reinsurers, companies like Private Bankers Life & Annuity Co, Monument Re, Allianz Re, Athora Life Re, and F&G Re, all creating jobs and attracted by Bermuda’s stellar reputation and regulatory environment. Captive insurance numbers are also up; a highlight was Butler University’s headline-making launch of a student-run company to underwrite its fine art collection and celebrity mascot…an English bulldog named “Trip.”

4. Innovation

Fintech, insurtech, life sciences, artificial intelligence, incubators, accelerators, e-commerce, distributed ledgers, cryptocurrencies: such is the digital future of the Bermuda market. BDA teams visited hotbeds like Silicon Valley, Waterloo and Boston this year, connecting Plug and Play startups with the island. We’re also working with government to advance Bermuda’s regulatory environment for utility tokens and other digital assets. Our stakeholders are forging ahead: Trunomi wins awards for its data-rights platform. DrumG is building apps for distributed ledgers. Digital concierge Winnow made its debut, as did AI’s Cicero. Cryptocurrencies are taking off, with the ICO of Unikoin Gold, and brisk trading of Ven at Bermuda-based Hub Culture’s summer beachside boot camp.

5. Cross-selling

More than 20 different Bermuda-based companies supported our London Executive Forum this November, a perfect example of the synergy we encourage to promote the full scope of Bermuda’s industry sectors. The breadth of global business in Bermuda differentiates our market as a true centre of excellence, a place where each sector, world-class in its own right, complements and builds on another. Asset management and ILS; captive insurance and high-net-worth needs; cyber products and healthcare risk solutions: cooperative structures that feed each other.

6. New conferences

BDA organised or participated in 75 different conferences and events in 2017, overseas and on-island. Eight new additions to our local calendar included the Bermuda Healthcare Forum, America’s Cup Superyacht Regatta, InsuranceERM Insurance Risk & Capital event, and November’s Global Reinsurance Innovation & Insurtech conference. We also welcomed back successes such as Transcontinental Trusts International Forum, Regulatory Compliance Association [RCA] Symposium, Global Fund Forum, World Alternative Investment Summit [WAIS], and AeroPodium’s Offshore Aircraft Summit.

7. New legislation

Bermuda stays competitive by offering products and services that are fit-for-purpose and ensuring our corporate legislation is contemporary. The BDA works in tandem with the government’s Business Development Unit to actively influence and progress legislative reform. Heading to the legislature in 2018 are various bills, including those governing trust industry firewalls and superyachts. Work to introduce iSAC [Incorporated Segregated Account Company] laws also continues.

8. Data & research

“Data is the new oil” was the mantra at one industry conference in Bermuda this fall, underscoring the fundamental importance of metrics. Statistics produced by major industry groups support the massive significance of international business on Bermuda’s economy. ABIR, BILTIR and BIMA all reported multi-million-dollar annual impact. Data calls by the Bermuda Monetary Authority [BMA] also highlighted the island’s substantial global contribution of re/insurance: $200 billion to US clients and $70 billion to European clients over the past 20 years. Counting insurance-linked securities, the risk sector alone supports more than 3,000 jobs in Bermuda.

9. America’s Cup

This summer’s America’s Cup regatta proved a boost to international business, as well as tourism. The BDA is building on its legacy and the fruitful connections we made in the superyacht and high-net-worth sectors by driving relevant legislation, linking clients with realtors and other investment opportunities, and working to boost megayacht registrations and visits in Bermuda.

10. Community Outreach

Our agency strives to connect with audiences on-island and overseas. Our goal? To spread the word on why Bermuda is important to global business, and vice versa. Our CEO Ross Webber delivered numerous speeches and presentations this year, never missing an opportunity to talk up Bermuda’s advantages. The BDA has produced jurisdictional videos, webinars, webcasts, e-news, e-alerts, articles, and news releases.

Thank you to all our valued stakeholders!

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