In the wake of extensive regulatory reforms over the past few years, the lobby group for the global hedge fund industry, the Alternative Investment Management Association (AIMA), is publishing an updated version of its due diligence questionnaire that investors can use to assess hedge fund managers.

AIMA says that its flagship due diligence questionnaire (DDQ) was last revised in 2010, and that there was strong demand for an updated version to reflect the regulatory changes that have taken place since then. In particular, it points to new rules in Europe, such as the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD), which took effect in July; along with other regulatory issues, such as the treatment of dealing commissions and cyber security.

The updated survey was prepared following consultations with a broad range of hedge fund managers and institutional investors, AIMA notes. And, it says that it was careful to only make necessary changes. Nevertheless, there are more than 90 new questions on the survey. But the group says that many previous questions have been consolidated, and that the questionnaire aims to harmonize many of the expanded investor requirements for information.

“While much of the post-crisis regulation has set out to strengthen investor protection, the due diligence process remains the single most important step that investors in hedge funds can take to safeguard their investments. This is why the AIMA DDQ remains an absolutely critical tool for investors, and why, more than 15 years after it was first published, it continues to be an essential component of much of the due diligence involving hedge funds that takes place today,” said AIMA CEO, Jack Inglis.

“The changes that have been made to the DDQ reflect not only the much altered regulatory landscape since the financial crisis, but also the significantly increased scope of the due diligence process that investors are pursuing today,” he added.

AIMA says that the questionnaire is considered to be the industry-standard template; and, that the standardized set of questions helps managers respond efficiently to requests for information from multiple investors.

New AIMA Canada chairman

Separately, the group’s Canadian chapter, AIMA Canada, announced that Michael Burns, partner at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP, has taken over as its chair, succeeding Gary Ostoich, president of Spartan Fund Management, who had served as chair since 2009.

Various other directors were also elected to its board for two-year terms, effective Sept. 1, including Paul Patterson, vice president, private investment, Integrated Asset Management (IAM) Group, who is deputy chair; Tim Baron, partner at Davies Ward Phillips and Vineberg LLP, who is legal counsel; Derek Hatoum, partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, will be treasurer; Claude Perron, chairman, Crystalline Management Inc.; Claire Van Wyk, manager, sales support, advisor channel sales, RBC Global Asset Management; and, James Burron, chief operating officer, AIMA Canada.

“I am very much looking forward to working with our new board and the members of AIMA Canada over the next two years to expand AIMA Canada’s contribution to the alternative investment industry, both in Canada and internationally, and making AIMA Canada a valuable resource for our members,” Burns said.