As of yesterday, the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (the "AIFMD") is up and running. The Irish regulations implementing the AIFMD were published on 17 July, 2013, having been signed into law by the Irish Minister for Finance. This means that Ireland is one of the first EU member states to fully implement the Directive.

On 19 July 2013, the Central Bank of Ireland issued revised versions of the key documentation in connection with the Irish AIFMD regulatory regime.  This included a revised AIF Rulebook together with a revised AIFMD Q&A. The Central Bank also published the application form for registration as an alternative investment fund manager which will apply to those alternative investment fund managers that fall within the scope of the de minimus regime (also known as the small fund exemption).  The Central Bank’s revised AIFMD documentation can be found here.

Two further elements of EU legislation that are supplemental to the AIFMD are the European Venture Capital Funds Regulation and the European Social Entrepreneurship Funds Regulation (the "EuVECA Regulations"). The EuVECA Regulations became directly applicable in Ireland and the other EU Member States from 22 July 2013.

The EuVECA regime is likely to be attractive to managers of smaller venture capital funds. They introduce what is essentially a voluntary registration and marketing passport regime, with the advantage of a reduced level of regulation when compared to full authorisation under the AIFMD. Fund managers established in the EU that fall within the scope of the AIFMD de minimus regime who wish to benefit from the marketing passport, must, among other things, register in their home member state under the AIFMD, as distinct from full authorisation under the AIFMD.