News round-up: Assessing the potential of the LTAF structure; CFM brings UCITS management in-house; People Moves

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Assessing the potential of the LTAF structure

Ahead of the government’s consultation deadline for the Long Term Asset Fund (LTAF) structure on 25 June, hedge fund solutions provider Waystone has warned that finding a suitable structure for retail investors, and finding distributors for the product, will be the biggest hurdles to overcome.

The UK government has set an ambitious target of launching the first LTAF structure by the end of the year, and consultation over the vehicle – which will open up access to alternative investments like private equity, real estate and private debt – ends later this month.

“The benefits for managers are clear; an expanded investor base and increased sources of capital, with the potential to increase AUM,” said Neil Coxhead, Managing Director at Waystone. “The main challenge will be finding a suitable structure, whether this is a fund vehicle or an alternative investment platform that is suitable for retail investors. An additional challenge will be finding distributors to bring the product to market.

A working group comprising the FCA, the Treasury, the Bank of England and representatives from the funds industry is currently looking at changes to UK fund rules to help support the development of the LTAF. The FCA is expected to release the working group’s findings in July.

Waystone said it expects that if the LTAF is given the green light, there would be various specific governance requirements that will need to be fulfilled over and above the requirements for other types of UK authorised funds. These would likely include annual assessment of valuations, due diligence, conflicts of interest and liquidity management; expansion of senior management responsibilities; quarterly reports and monthly valuations.

CFM brings UCITS management in-house

Quant manager Capital Fund Management (CFM) has brought management of its ISTrends UCITS to its own platform, after five years with Rothschild.

The fund, previously called R CFM Trends UCITS, was until recently managed on the Rothschild platform, InRIS.

CFM said by distributing funds through its own UCITS platform, it could build “less intermediated relationships with its clients and better serve their needs”. ISTrends UCITS joins the firm’s Quantitative Sustainable Absolute Return (QUASAR) UCITS fund, launched in December 2020, and ISTrends Equity Capped UCITS fund, launched in June 2020, on the CFM in-house UCITS platform.

The ISTrends fund, launched in December 2016, provides investors with a global diversified exposure to long-term trend following strategies across all global core asset classes and through over 100 different contracts. CFM manages in excess of $700m in trend following strategies on behalf of its clients. IST Trend UCITS, one of the products, accounts for close to $100m. CFM manages a total of $7.4bn in assets.

People moves

Axiom Alternative Investments, the French asset manager with $2.4bn under management, has appointed Amélie Kesler to the newly created role of Head of Legal. Kesler will report to David Benamou, Chief Investment Officer. She began her career as a Legal Officer at Lazard Frères Gestion SAS in 2015 and was promoted to Deputy Head of Legal Asset Management in April 2019. Axiom has offices in Paris and London, employing a total of 23 people.

Pension actuarial and consultancy firm Cartwright has recruited Jonathan Seed as Head of Pension Strategy. Ian Cartwright, Chairman at Cartwright, said: “Over recent years there have been increasing focus from trustees on receiving high quality strategic advice particularly [as they enter the latter stages of their de-risking journey].” Seed has more than 20 years of experience providing actuarial advice to both trustees and companies.

Outsourced trading firm Tourmaline Partners has hired two new senior traders: David Toy, a senior trader in Asian securities, and Chris Arkin, a derivatives trading specialist. Toy, who is based in Australia, was most recently Director of Trading, Asian Equities for TIAA Investments. Prior to that, he spent ten years at Moore Capital with the majority of that time as Head of Asian Trading. Arkin works at Tourmaline’s headquarters in Stamford, Connecticut. He most recently worked as the head trader at Antipodean Advisors.

Stephanie Taylor

Head of Event Content, HFM

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