Declan O'Sullivan


Declan O'Sullivan


Dublin | 3 George's Dock, IFSC, Dublin D01 X5X0
+353 1 436 8510 | +353 1 633 5845

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Declan O’Sullivan advises domestic and international clients in the establishment and authorisation of all types of investment funds including UCITS, hedge funds, property funds and private equity funds. He also represents many leading fund service providers in Ireland, including investment managers, administrators and custodians. Mr. O’Sullivan has advised clients on the rollout of many innovative new products.

Mr. O’Sullivan previously led the alternative investment practice at Dublin firm William Fry. Mr. O'Sullivan served for many years (including a term as Chair) on the Alternative Investments Committee of the Irish Funds Industry Association, as a member of the Irish industry’s task force on the Alternative Investment Funds Managers Directive and as a member of the European Commission Expert Group on Open Ended Real Estate Funds. He currently sits on the Irish Funds working groups dealing with private equity funds and loan funds. He is also a notary public.

Mr. O’Sullivan is ranked as a leading lawyer in his field by the independent legal directories Chambers Europe and Chambers Global. The 2017 editions of Chambers Global and Chambers Europe cite clients as commenting that he "is an expert in the funds business" and states that he possesses significant market experience and a particular knowledge of alternative investment funds. The 2016 edition of Chambers Global states that is a "highly respected investment funds lawyer, who established the firm's funds offering in Ireland" with clients noting that he is "really smart and has a lot of experience. He has obviously counselled enough clients to know what they like and want." The 2015 edition of Chambers Global states that "sources highlight Declan O'Sullivan for his experience and knowledge of the Irish funds market, particularly regulatory matters", with clients noting that: "he is a practical, smart lawyer, who isn't afraid of coming up with solutions to tough problems". Chambers Global 2014 states that he is known for his "brilliant knowledge and contacts" and described as having "his finger on the pulse". He is recommended in The Legal 500 EMEA 2014, which states that "the highly experienced Declan O’Sullivan continues to develop the investment funds practice at Dechert LLP." Mr. O’Sullivan has previously been described in The Legal 500 EMEA as a "leading expert in his field" and in Chambers Europe as "widely esteemed" and praised his "deep understanding of the investment industry – he knows what the financial regulator’s thinking is likely to be." Mr. O'Sullivan is included in the fifth edition of Best Lawyers in Ireland for the area of Private Funds and is recommended as a leading lawyer in The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers - Private Funds 2014.

Mr. O'Sullivan is a regular contributor to and editor of leading financial services and asset management publications and texts. He is a regular speaker at industry events.

  • University College Dublin, B.C.L., 1988
  • University College Dublin, LL.M., 1994
  • Solicitor, Law Society of Ireland
  • England and Wales (non-practicing)
Speaking Engagements
  • Ireland Roundtable — Dublin, Ireland (October 4, 2017) 

Partner, Declan O'Sullivan, participates in the Sanne Ireland Roundtable. This event brings together leaders in the financial services industry in Ireland to discuss; alternative investment / financial industry in Ireland; the role of Ireland as a jurisdiction, fund domicile and operational centre of excellence; investment opportunity, risks and challenges in the market right now; regulatory update and relevant industry trends; and Brexit. 

  • Loan Market Association Dublin Seminar — Dublin, Ireland (September 26,2017)

Declan O'Sullivan speaks at this seminar which covers: syndicated lending; developments in loan operations; and a non-bank lender's view. 

Visit the LMA website for more information. 

  • Spotlight on Loan Operations - Loan Market Association Dublin Seminar  Dublin, Ireland (September 13, 2016) 
  • UCITS V: what do you need to do in time for March 2016? —2nd Annual Financial Services Forum 2015, London (March 11, 2015)

Declan O'Sullivan takes part in a session entitled "UCITS V: What do you need to do in time for March 2016?". Topics within this session include: actions to take ahead of implementation deadline of March 2016; how to draft and implement remuneration policies; and choosing a single depositary. 

  • Product Updates: An Outline of the Irish Central Bank's New Loan Fund Regime and an Update on Money Market Fund Reform in Europe and the U.S.  GAIM Ops Ireland, Dublin ,Ireland (October 8, 2014) 

Declan O'Sullivan takes part in the Legal Debrief at the conference, where lawyers from the leading law firms host interactive roundtables and answer questions on the most complicated and challenging issues in the industry. Declan's roundtable provides an outline of the Irish Central Bank's new loan fund regime and an update on money market fund reform in Europe and the U.S. 

  • How Remuneration Caps and Performance Fees Will Affect Asset Management Firms — Chief Compliance Officer Roundtable - Regulatory Overload?, London (November 14, 2013)

This panel discusses limiting bonuses through one regulation and allowing more use of performance fees through another reg could set the stage for recruiting battles in asset management as talented professionals seek greener pastures.  

  • UCITS V: Practical Implementation — UCITS and AIFMD in London - 2013 Conference, London (September 17, 2013) 

This two day conference looks at the commercial solutions and fund success stories behind UCITS and AIFMD implementation and distribution. Declan O'Sullivan chairs a session at the conference titled "UCITS V: Practical Implementation." Topics include: depositary liabilities; remuneration & bonus caps; and sanctions. 

  • The Impact of the Recent ESMA Guidelines upon Further UCITS Products — Regulation of ETFs and Complex UCITS 2013 - A Conference Presented by Informa, London (May 28, 2013) 

The panel discusses: clarifying the general updates to UCITS regulation & accessing the extent the Guidelines "increase transparency and protection [and] contribute to safeguarding the stability of financial markets." 

  • AIFMD - Level Two Rules, Their Implications — The Offshore Investment Conference Dublin 2013, Dublin, Ireland (May 10, 2013) 

The long-awaited Delegated Act supplementing AIFMD was released on 19 December 2012, providing an extensive set of detailed implementing measures and technical rules on a wide range of business disciplines. Declan reviews the effects of this Act in its early stage. 

  • AIFMD - Delegation Issues — AOI Funds Group Workshop, Dublin, Ireland (May 1, 2013) 

Declan O'Sullivan takes part in the AOI Funds Group Workshop in Dublin, speaking on the topic of AIFMD delegation issues. 

  • New York Fund Industry Briefing —Presented by the Irish Funds Industry Association, New York, NY (March 15, 2013)

The panel, including Declan O'Sullivan, reviews the changes in the regulatory landscape and the impact these changes will have one product development in the Funds Industry in the EU and Ireland, as well as the main global distribution trends and important considerations for U.S. asset managers and promoters. 

  • European Funds Distribution Forum — J.P Morgan, San Fancisco, CA (December 5, 2012) 

This forum discusses options to effectively reach your global investor base, changes in service models, regulations that may impact distribution, and any other key topics. Declan O'Sullivan participates on this panel. 

  • Fund Relocation from the Administrator's Perspective —The Institute for Financial Services Fund Restructuring and Fund Relocation Conference, Liechtenstein (November 27, 2012)
  • Irish Funds Industry Association — Boston, MA (March 22, 2012)
  • Fund Distribution: The Practical Steps to Reach a Global Investor Base —J.P. Morgan Global Distribution Fund Forum, New York, NY (October 12, 2011)

Topics for discussion include: overview of global fund distribution trends; regulations that impact distribution and their likely impact on buying behaviors; product choices and selling themes globally; and changes in service models and fund features to accommodate a global investor base. 

  • What You Need to Know About AIFMD, FATCA, RDR —European Fiduciary Seminar, Dublin (June 22, 2011)

Leading industry experts comment on their interpretation of recent and new legislation, including AIFMD, UCITS IV, FATCA and RDR.

  • Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive — Irish Funds Industry Association Industry Update, Chicago, IL and New York, NY (March 14, 2011)
  • The Alternative Investment Fund Manager Directive (AIFMD) –What Will Be its Overall Impact on Fund Management and the Future of UCITS Investments? —UCITS, NEWCITS & ETFs 2011, London (February 9, 2011)

Topics will include: the structure of the Cayman Island fund; the extent of depositary liability under AIFMD; penalization of Non-UCITS; and the consequences for non-EU managers under the new rules. 

  • AIFMD Industry Seminar — IFIA, Dublin, Ireland (November 17,2010)

As the AIFM Directive is finalized industry experts provide information and insight into the implications and opportunities for the funds industry in Ireland.

  • Changes in Regulation in the EU and the US: Impact on Hedge Fund Structures and Domicile —100 Women in Hedge Funds, Zurich (November 3, 2010)

In the aftermath of the financial crisis, governments across the world are addressing the exposed vulnerabilities in the financial system through a comprehensive review of regulatory and supervisory controls and frameworks.Alternative asset managers, who have previously largely escaped regulatory scrutiny, are particularly affected by the coming proposed stricter regulations. As a foretaste of what lies ahead, the new US financial reform requires non-US asset managers managing US client assets to register with the SEC. The debate over the European Directive on alternative asset managers is still ongoing, but stricter regulations with regard to investor protection,the use of leverage, and market efficiency are being considered

  • The Implications of the Directive for Administrators and Custodians in Key Jurisdictions — Management Global Information SA's 3rd Annual AIFMD Conference, London (October 6, 2010) 

Declan O'Sullivan discusses the global reach of the Alternative Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD) and its potential impact on fund investors as well as custodians and administrators throughout Europe.