The Walker Guidelines
The Walker Guidelines

The following Corporate guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • The Walker Guidelines
  • What are they and why were they introduced?
  • Who is impacted by the guidelines?
  • What do the guidelines require of these private equity firms and portfolio companies?
  • Who monitors compliance with the guidelines?
  • Impact of the AIFMD

This Practice Note provides an overview of the Walker Guidelines for Disclosure and Transparency in Private Equity for enhanced disclosure by certain private equity firms and their large portfolio companies.

For further information on private equity firms and funds, see Practice Note: Private equity investment—firms and funds.

What are they and why were they introduced?

In February 2007, the British Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (BVCA) asked Sir David Walker to undertake an independent review of the adequacy of disclosure and transparency in private equity, in order to recommend a set of guidelines for conformity on a voluntary basis by the industry.

These were sought by both the BVCA and major private equity firms in an effort to enhance stakeholders’ understanding of private equity activities and address concerns about a lack of transparency in the industry. In addition, they were eager to avoid any further formal statutory regulation of the industry.

The resulting Guidelines for Disclosure and Transparency in Private Equity were published in November 2007 after a short consultation period. They were amended in July 2014 following a further short consultation period.

In summary the Walker Guidelines recommend:

  1. enhanced disclosure by both firms and their portfolio companies

  2. provision of data by both firms and their portfolio companies to the BVCA

  3. adoption of certain valuation guidelines, and

  4. reporting to limited partner investors and