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Finance Magazine - January 2004 Issue

Latest EU Directives threaten to drive up costs, inefficiencies in broking, industry fears
The Irish broking industry is concerned over possible impact of the Investment Services Directive, targeted as an objective by the irish Presidency, while the Prospectus Directives means big changes are ahead for the Irish Stock Exchange.
Jobs in banks and finance continue to grow
Irish financial institutions currently employ around 38,000 people, the Irish Bankers’ Federation (IBF) Facts & Figures 2004 reveals, with an additional 4,500 new jobs created during 2002. The figures are consistent with results for IFSC jobs in 2002 in Dublin as compiled in the Finance Dublin Yearbook 2003. The 2004 Yearbook will be published in March, showing job creation for 2003, and initial indications for 2004 are positive with Merrill Lynch leading the way in projected employment for 2004 (185 jobs). (See separate story (left on this page).
NTMA kicks off 2004 €4 bn debt programme (down €2.5b on 2003)
The first Irish Government bond of 2004 was launched on January 20th, with the NTMA expected to issue some €4 billion of bonds this year.
BOI to fund 15% of Gunner’s new stadium
The ?260 million project financing deal for Arsenal Football Club’s new 60,000 seat Ashburton Grove stadium is expected to close by the end of the month. Royal Bank of Scotland is understood to be the lead arranger on the deal, joined by five other banks including Bank of Ireland. BOI are funding approximately 15 per cent of the deal, which amounts to some ?39 million.
Unique moment
January 1st marked the commencement of Ireland’s six-month presidency of the European Union. The Irish Presidency happens at an unique moment in European politics as it will be the last one under the present parliament, and so marks the end of a cycle in European policymaking.
Auditing corporate governance - the next big thing for rating agencies?
Antoinette Flynn and Michael Smyth examine how corporate governance practices cannot only be improved, but also be shown to be improved, and ask whether a time will come when corporate governance audit ratings are as common as debt ratings.
An Irish perspective on the Eurozone
A new book examining how the Irish economy functions as a member of the Eurozone has been published.
ICAI calls for harmonisation of reporting obligations
Standardising auditors’ reporting obligations will be one of the first issues the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland (ICAI) will be bringing up with the new Irish Auditing and Accounting Supervisory Authority when it is established on a statutory basis.
GIPS extended to include private equity
New private equity provisions of the Global Investment Performance Standards (GIPS(r)) have been approved by the Board of Governors of the Association for Investment Management and Research (AIMR), the worldwide sponsor of the GIPS standards.
CESR identifies four milestones in transition to IFRS
The Committee of European Securities Regulators (CESR) has published its recommendation for regulators on how listed companies can effectively manage the communication of the financial impact of transitioning to international accounting standards in 2005.
Certificates of deposit - a welcome new addition to Ireland’s money markets
Changes in the Finance Act 2003 have made it possible for Irish resident financial institutions to issue certificates of deposit (CD) to Irish investors. Already a market is developing with two institutions, UniCredito Italiano Bank (Ireland) plc and EBS Building Society, recently commencing CD programmes. In this Special Report we examine the issues.
Meeting DEPFA BANK’s short-term funding needs
DEPFA BANK launched its euro commercial paper and certificates of deposit programme back in 1995, overcoming the difficulties at the time of selling to Irish investors by issuing in the name of the main German subsidiary, DEPFA Deutsche Pfandbriefbank AG. Today the programme stands at approximately €15 billion, and forms an integral part of the bank’s short-term funding strategy writes Jackie Hughes.
How to ‘tap’ the market
In May 1966, the first CD ‘tap issue’ was launched in the London market writes John O’Farrell. Since then the market has gone from strength to strength, and as of November 2003, was worth approximately $470 billion, with CDS set to become a major growth area in the Dublin money market.
2004 should see rapid growth amongst Irish CD issuers and investors as the London market becomes increasingly complex
As a result of clarification within the Finance Act 2003, it is now possible for Irish domiciled institutions to issue Certificates of Deposit within the London market and into the ICSDs, using a Tap CD facility rather than a formal ECP or ECD programme. These changes have brought CDs into line with the parameters within which ECP has historically been issued. Damien Donoghue addresses some of the most frequently asked questions in this regard.
Success story: Rabobank’s Irish banking business - one of the AAA rated group's high performers
Since establishing its Dublin office ten years ago, Rabobank Ireland has 'punched its weight' across a number of areas, and is now known as a high performer in the group. Focused mainly on the international side of things, Rabobank moved into the domestic market in 2001, with its acquisition of ACC, and this, says Fergus Murphy, is a good example of an international banking group which broke into the local market as it became more comfortable with 'all things Ireland'.
Case study: Oracle's Irish Financial Shared Services Centre provides unanticipated corporate governance benefits in its fourth year
Oracle’s first shared services centre opened in Dublin in 1999 and now provides finance and administration infrastructure for Oracle business units across its Europe, Middle East, and Africa region (EMEA). Four years ago when setting up the Dublin SSC, Oracle could never have anticipated the additional benefit the SSC would provide in terms of improved corporate governance, writes Alan O’Reilly.
Sale and leasebacks are a trend guaranteed to continue
One of the most notable trends of the past year in the property market has been the record number of sale and leaseback deals concluded writes John Moran, in this review of the Irish commercial property sector.
Corporate banking overview 2003: corporate bond market emerges, and, at last, PPPs
The corporate bond market re-emerged as an alternative to conventional debt in 2003, writes John Reynolds, with capital raised via the bond market by Kerry Group, Greencore, Independent Newspapers, Greencore, and Waterford Wedgewood during the year. 'A market that was once neatly divided between large quoted public and private sector businesses and the state sector is now more complex and diffuse', he says.
Corporate Finance Review & Outlook: MBOs and public to privates dominated deals in 2003 but will 2004 mark the return of the IPO ?
MBOs and de-listings by Alphyra and Riverdeep, amongst others, dominated the headlines in 2003, writes David O’Donnell, and he expects this trend to continue into 2004, adding that despite many pundits predicting the return of the IPO sometime this year, he believes that it won’t happen just yet.
A Day in the Life: writing international insurance from Shannon
Operating from Shannon, Co. Clare, HIIL is a subsidiary of HBOS plc. and underwrites creditor insurance for HBOS customers. After opening its doors a little over three years ago with 55 employees, HIIL is now over five times its original size and has nearly two million insurance policies in force. As chief operating officer, Mary Halton was tasked with ensuring that the rapid growth was matched with a financial and operating structure suited to an organisation with very ambitious goals.
Who's who in Finance: Ruth O'Briain, Managing Director, F & C Ireland
Who's who in Finance: Diarmuid Bradley, Deputy Chief Executive, Permanent TSB
Who's who in Finance: Sean Hawkshaw, Chief Executive, KBC Asset Management Ltd
Do you avoid tax?
“In extreme cases, exploiting legal loopholes is not very different from a guilty man walking free because of a legal technicality” - the speaker is the chairman of the Revenue Commissioners. In recent times the Revenue Commissioners have attacked tax avoidance. Politicians have made unfavourable noises about it. Comments on the topic of tax avoidance is becoming reminiscent of the McCarthy era. And yet, is there anybody potentially liable to tax who does not seek to avoid tax, asks Brian Daly
UK tax changes
The Chancellor’s pre budget statement did not contain many unexpected tax measures. Some tax measures will be of interest from an Irish perspective.
Come up and see me sometime: The Revenue's LCD division arranges meetings with major taxpayers
The Large Cases Division (LCD) was created to deal with the 300 largest corporate groups in the country, and the 200 wealthiest individuals. These major taxpayers have recently been in receipt of 'Mae West' type letters from the Revenue Commissioners, urging an early meeting. Will it be all tea and sympathy?
Thinking about models
Business transactions occur in a web of taxation. This is true of almost all asset acquisitions, disposals, and financings. It is especially true of so called “tax based” transactions. Are the present methods of evaluating such transactions adequate?
Securitisation: a great year for the industry
Peter Walker says that 2003 was a great year for the industry, but that to achieve further growth in 2004 the industry needs to continue to maintain close relationships with the Government, Revenue Commissioners, arrangers, structurers and investors.The more important success stories included the changes introduced by the Finance Act, the first issues under Ireland's pfandbrief legislation, the launch of Air France�s Frans 2003 securitisation and the first collateralised debt obligation (CDO) transactions using an Irish SPV.
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