On 13 August 2013, ESMA published the final version (and translations) of its guidelines on key concepts of the AIFMD (first published on 24 May).

The purpose of the guidelines is to ensure a common, uniform and consistent application by each Member State of the concepts making up the definition of "AIF" in Article 4(1)(a) of the AIFMD. Specifically, guidance is provided on the following criteria:

  • the treatment of investment compartments of an undertaking
  • what constitutes a ‘collective investment undertaking’
  • the meaning of ‘raising capital’
  • guidelines on ‘number of investors’
  • the meaning of ‘defined investment policy’

The Guidelines take effect two months after the date of their publication. Regulators to whom the guidelines apply should comply by incorporating the guidelines into their supervisory practices. Regulators must also notify ESMA whether they comply or intend to comply with the guidelines, giving reasons for non-compliance, within two months of the date of their publication. In the absence of a response by this deadline, Regulators will be considered to be non-compliant.