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The Brazilian market has long held great potential for
Cayman’s funds industry. The right mix of innovative
technology coupled with the tried and tested ethos of
“customer first” has led to excellent results in a market that
three years ago wasn’t even on his firm’s radar, Benjamin Reid
of Maitland Group tells Cayman Funds.
individuals in the region. That focus has since transitioned into working
with increasingly large fund clients, expanding its team to better
In that time, Reid launched an office in Miami focused on a private
client base before finally making the move to the Cayman Islands
some eight months ago—the natural location given the practice’s
growing focus on institutional funds.
“Cayman has all the key service providers we need to enhance our
bench strength,” he says.
Since arriving in Cayman, he and his team have built a bespoke
technology platform capable of offering better and faster analysis. His
group is now responsible for approximately $3.5 billion of assets under
“It has been a journey, but I have never doubted the potential of this
market provided it is done the right way. Success has always been in
providing clients with a high-touch, client-centric approach in the native
language,” he says. This approach can only be achieved by investing
substantial time upfront determining needs in order to customise
“Business in Brazil works based on references. You will reap the
rewards of that based on the amount and quality of attention you put
forth with clients. I also believe strongly that people do business with
people they like, and for this relationships built over time are key.”
Through his career, Reid has built up a deep understanding of the
investment fund universe with a specific focus on the Bahamas,
British Virgin Islands, Cayman and Luxembourg.
He now has a wealth of experience in offshore structuring, focusing
on solutions for setting up transparent investment vehicles for ultrahigh
net worth private clients and investment fund managers.
A multi-pronged approach
Reid explains that he has three main strands of service for clients
“The first ‘product’ is aimed at the private or ultra-high net worth
Brazilian clients who already have money offshore structured through an
investment fund. While this is sometimes perceived as a tax-driven
structure, all the families and family offices that have fund structures
with us have done so with sole aim of adding asset diversification
to their portfolio and the offshore fund is normally run in parallel to a
Brazilian local fund,” he explains.
While characteristically these structures are simpler from a delivery
CAYMAN FUNDS | 2019 59
A focus on high-quality customer service, high-end bespoke
technology, investing in developing local relationships
and an appreciation of cultural nuances are just some of
the secrets of unlocking the potentially lucrative Brazilian
market for the funds sector.
That is according to Benjamin Reid, senior business development
and client manager (LatAm), Maitland Group, who heads the firm’s
fund administration offering in the region.
Maitland is a global advisory, administration and family office
firm providing legal, fiduciary, investment and fund administration
services to private, corporate and institutional clients across multiple
jurisdictions. It now has 17 offices in 12 jurisdictions, more than 1,100
employees and over $220 billion in assets under administration.
Its Cayman office was opened in 2009. The Latin American unit is the
fastest-growing part of the firm’s Cayman portfolio and set for even
greater success in 2019.
Reid, a fluent Portuguese speaker (having been schooled in Portugal
and living in Brazil for a short term), has specialised in developing
relationships in the region for much of his career. Now, he is matching
the needs of the country’s institutions and wealthy individuals with
Cayman’s deep offering and expertise in the funds sector.
“You need a very client-focused approach, where the client
always comes first. This translates to not just being responsive, but
proactively reaching out regularly and visiting them in Brazil on a very
“Finally, complement all this with great technology and the right
products,” Reid says.
“That final part is key. Good technology can allow you to automate
many functions, tailor to the client’s needs and offer more analysis,
and also have more time to spend servicing the clients.”
A winding path
Reid started his career at BOA Merrill Lynch before working at RBC
and HSBC. At both of the latter, using his language skills and growing
network in the region, he built up substantial books of business in the
Latin American region.
A chance encounter in 2013 took him to work for Maitland in South
Africa where he was again tasked with building a business focused
At that point, the offering was aimed at the private client
segment, doing funds and trusts for family offices and high net worth