Notified Alternative Investment Funds (NAIFs)

Speed-to-market is the main selling point for Malta’s Notified Alternative Investment Fund (NAIF) framework. NAIFs rely on the regulation of the fund manager, and funds can be launched without the need for pre-authorisation by the MFSA.

Alternative Investment Fund Managers (AIFMs) can set up and launch AIFs within 10 working days under Malta’s Notified Alternative Investment Fund (NAIF) framework, thus allowing investment managers to meet time to market requests. The fast track registration of a NAIF relies on the regulated status of the AIFM, in terms of the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive.

From AIF to NAIF

The NAIF is not subject to the standard licensing procedure, however; it is still subject to a Notification process: 

  1. The board of directors of the NAIF must pass a resolution certifying that the Offering Documents of the NAIF satisfy the minimum criteria as prescribed by the MFSA. 
  2. Within 30 days, the AIFM must submit a duly completed notification request to the MFSA. 
  3. Within 10 business days of a duly completed notification pack being filed with it, the MFSA will include the NAIF on its online “List of Notified AIFs held in good standing”. 
  4. The prospectus is dated.

Key Features of NAIFs

  • Short time to market; 
  • Supervision through the AIFM; 
  • Investor protection ensured by full compliance with the AIFMD regime; 
  • Access to other EU jurisdictions through the European passport; 
  • Product that is easy to understand and with reduced costs; 
  • May take various legal forms; 
  • May be structured as umbrella vehicle with ring-fenced compartments.

Legal Form: 

An AIF, in relation to which a notification may be submitted, may be in the form of a SICAV, INVCO, an Incorporated Cell Company of a SICAV ICC, an incorporated cell of a RICC, a limited partnership, a unit trust or a contractual fund.
Legal Form: An AIF, in relation to which a notification may be submitted, may be in the form of a SICAV, INVCO, an Incorporated Cell Company of a SICAV ICC, an incorporated cell of a RICC, a limited partnership, a unit trust or a contractural fund.

Investor Base: 

Professional Investors (as defined under MiFID) Qualifying Investors which: 

  • Invest a minimum of €100,000 (or equivalent) in the AIF 
  • Declare in writing to the AIFM and the AIF that they are aware and accept the risks associated with the proposed investment 
  • Satisfy at least one of the following criteria: 
    • a body corporate with (or part of a group with) net assets in excess of €750,000 
    • an unincorporated body or association with net assets in excess of €750,000 
    • a trust, the net value of whose assets is in excess of €750,000
    • an individual whose net worth (or joint net worth with their spouse) is in excess of €750,000 
    • a senior employee or Director of Service Providers to the NAIF.

Set-up time: 10 working days from notification date to MFSA 

Investment Restrictions: Yes (cannot invest in non-financial assets) 

Offering Documents: Required (Prospectus) 

Fund Manager: Full-Scope AIFM, cannot be self-managed 

Fund Administration: Needs to be located in Malta 

Custodian: Depositary needs to be based in Malta and appointed in accordance with AIFMD requirements 

Auditor: Required 

Money Laundering Reporting Officer (MLRO): Required but can be outsourced to an administrator 

Compliance Function: Required. Carried out by compliance Officer of the AIFM 

Reporting Requirements: Quarterly reports (in terms of complying with customer due diligence requirements)
Set-up time: 10 working days from notification date to MFSA Investment Restrictions: Yes (cannot invest in non-financial assets) Offering Documents: Required (Prospectus) Fund Manager: Full-Scope AIFM, cannot be self-managed Fund Administration: Needs to be located in Malta Custodian: Depositary needs to be based in Malta and appointed in accordance with AIFMD requirements Auditor: Required Money Laundering Reporting Officer (MLRO]: Required but can be outsourced to an administrator Compliance Function: Required. Carried out by compliance Officer of the AIFM Reporting Requirements: Quarterly reports (in terms of complying with customer due diligence requirements)Set-up time: 10 working days from notification date to MFSA Investment Restrictions: Yes (cannot invest in non-financial assets) Offering Documents: Required (Prospectus) Fund Manager: Full-Scope AIFM, cannot be self-managed Fund Administration: Needs to be located in Malta Custodian: Depositary needs to be based in Malta and appointed in accordance with AIFMD requirements Auditor: Required Money Laundering Reporting Officer (MLRO]: Required but can be outsourced to an administrator Compliance Function: Required. Carried out by compliance Officer of the AIFM Reporting Requirements: Quarterly reports (in terms of complying with customer due diligence requirements)