· 2 min read

Jurisdiction Juxtaposition - PE Fund Locales

Exploring the allure of the Cayman Islands and Delaware for private equity fund incorporation, comparing their tax regimes and the benefits they offer to investors.

Picking a Home for Private Equity Funds: Cayman Islands or Delaware?

When private equity (PE) firms decide where to incorporate their funds, the decision often boils down to two popular jurisdictions: the Cayman Islands and Delaware. Each offers a unique set of advantages, particularly in terms of tax benefits and investor appeal.

The Cayman Islands: A Tax Neutral Hub

  • Tax Neutrality: The Cayman Islands are considered a tax-neutral jurisdiction, meaning that there are no direct taxes imposed on PE funds—no corporate, capital gains, income, profits, or withholding taxes.
  • Investor Privacy: The jurisdiction offers a degree of privacy for investors, which is often a significant consideration.
  • Regulatory Environment: The Cayman Islands provide a regulatory environment that is generally favorable to PE funds, with fewer restrictions on investment policies and strategies.

Delaware: Familiar and Flexible

  • Tax Treatment: While not entirely tax-free, Delaware allows for tax-efficient structures, especially for U.S. taxpayers, through the use of pass-through entities like limited partnerships and LLCs.
  • Legal System: Delaware’s well-established legal system is often seen as a benefit, with a vast body of case law concerning corporations and a specialized court (the Court of Chancery) for corporate issues.
  • Ease of Doing Business: Incorporating in Delaware is straightforward, and the state is known for its business-friendly environment.

Comparative Analysis

  • Tax Benefits: While the Cayman Islands might seem to win with its tax neutrality, Delaware’s familiar legal system and favorable tax treatment for U.S. residents balance the scales, especially for funds primarily operating within the United States.
  • Regulatory Considerations: The Cayman Islands might require additional disclosures and compliance under international pressure, while Delaware’s regulations are well-understood and stable.
  • Investor Perception: Some investors may prefer funds based in the Cayman Islands for the tax neutrality, whereas others might favor Delaware for its robust legal protections.


Choosing between the Cayman Islands and Delaware for PE fund incorporation depends on the fund’s investor base, investment strategy, and regulatory preference. Both jurisdictions offer compelling advantages, and the choice often involves a strategic consideration of the fund’s goals and the investors’ needs.

Stay tuned for further insights into the world of private equity, where jurisdictional choices play a pivotal role in shaping investment success.

Back to Blog