The **Bahamas Institute of Financial Services (BIFS)** will introduce a **Diploma in Hedge Fund Administration** programme this Fall, in conjunction with CLT International and the University of Manchester.

The programme offers a degree level, certificated programme resulting in a recognised practical qualification, awarded in association with the University of Manchester’s Business School. It offers a variety of study options and extensive support and resource material.

BIFS Executive Director Kim W. Bodie notes that the growth of the hedge fund industry is creating opportunities, but at the same time it also increases demands. The role of offshore fund administrators in particular is expanding. These administrators must ensure that the hedge fund is being run in accordance with its published objectives and that its back-office operations are managed efficiently and effectively for the benefit of the investors. This function is becoming increasingly specialised and requires professional skills across a range of disciplines, including legal, accounting, management and investment. She says, *“The Diploma in Hedge Fund Administration covers all of the major aspects of the hedge fund industry and, in particular, the organisation and operations of a hedge fund. It is designed to provide administrators with the knowledge and professional skills required to undertake the daily operations of a hedge fund in a consistent, productive and competent manner.”*

An Industry Training Sub Committee of **BFSB’s Funds Sector Working Group** has collaborated with BIFS and CLT in promoting the launch of the programme. Chairman of the Sub-Group, Antoine Bastian of Genesis Fund Services, says *“I think the Hedge Fund Diploma Programme provides a critical, focused and needed academic tool that will foster and enhance current and future employees in the fund industry with technical and systematic training and development. It can only benefit the investment fund business in The Bahamas.”*

Mrs. Bodie points out that the course, the first of its kind to be offered in The Bahamas, should be of interest to all offshore hedge fund practitioners, including those who are relatively new to funds and wish to learn more. It will also benefit more experienced members of the hedge fund community who would like to expand their core understanding of different facets of the industry and develop a broader expertise. Whilst the course is designed primarily for the fund administrator, it will also be of interest to legal advisers, directors of hedge funds and other professionals in the offshore hedge fund industry.

BFSB’s CEO & Executive Director, Wendy C. Warren, emphasises the importance of high quality financial services, including fund administration services, offered from The Bahamas in branding the jurisdiction. She says, *“Critical to building a compelling brand is the delivery of consistent technical expertise in a very demanding environment. BFSB through its funds working group has long encouraged mechanisms that would quantify to international investors and managers the high quality services available. Such assurance is central to attracting business away from established global players.”*

In addition to the Bahamas launch, the Diploma programme is being offered in the British Virgin Islands, Cayman, Guernsey, Isle of Man, and Jersey. Here in The Bahamas, it is scheduled to start on October 9, 2008, with workshops in January and June, 2009. Persons interested in registering should contact Kim Bodie at the Institute. *(See link below)*