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Loud and Clear – April 1st 2020

Stretching it: Brand and franchise extensions for ambitious fund managers

 

It’s the first day of April: New Year and other seasonal celebrations are little more than a memory, and spring has “sprung”. The clocks have gone forward, both in North America and Europe, and at this time, each year, dear reader, we like to depart from our usual diet of communications advice and present some of the more innovative thinking in the market. Last year we walked through the “lunar loophole”, whereby domiciling a fund on the moon might allow free passporting across the UK, the EU and elsewhere, sidestepping Brexit and a number of other pesky regulatory obstacles.

This year, our focus is earthbound (with one exception). Fund management firms that have established strong brands are often on the lookout for credible ways to extend the franchise and increase assets under management, without putting the original strategies on which they built their reputations under undue strain. Whilst doubling fund size from one vintage to the next is a strategy that has its advocates, every strategy has its limits, and there comes a point where a fund’s sheer size brings its sensible deployability into question – take a bow, Vision fund

So, what to do?

For the enthusiastic and ambitious manager, for whom a new credit strategy to sit alongside the equity stalwart just won’t cut it, we have trawled the market for the very best practice in franchise and brand extension.

In this short article we will expand on our top 8 picks for growing your one-strategy fund into a multi-strategy fund management dynasty. Maybe some examples won’t be a great fit for your brand, but we hope this innovative line up will act, at least, as inspiration for your own bold step into the world of leveraging a reputation built doing one thing into picking up management fees for doing something different, too.

The funds and strategies we will explore are:

  1. Matryoshka Capital Partners (Russian fund of fund of fund of fund of funds)
  2. Tear, Fold & Whype LLC (toilet paper supply chain finance)
  3. Oranje Investment Partners (tulip futures)
  4. OakFurnitureLand Ventures (corporate VC investing in OakTech and cutting edge TeakTech, raising sister fund to 2014 vintage Welsh Dresser Innovations Fund I)
  5. Clanger LLP (multifamily lunar real estate)
  6. Whyte-Goods Interim Capital Partners (fridge finance)
  7. Beta-Max Rising Tide Vision Strategies I (diversified dumb beta/ETF hybrid mega fund with stakes in every exchange listed vehicle, globally)
  8. Contrarian Advisors I (providing levered access to a selection of bottom-quartile private equity funds, although origination has proven to be a challenge)

Let’s get started!

 

 

 

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With regret, to our knowledge, none of these strategies are currently in the market. We made it all up in service to the grand tradition of April Fools’ Day or si vous préférez, poisson d’avril.

If you’d like to share this post and see if your colleagues, peers or friends have any interest in aping these pioneers of TeakTech and fridge finance, just copy and paste this link and email or message it to them:

If you are, conversely, actually quite interested in how you can extend your range of fund products in a way that makes sense to investors my team and I can help you define articulate and premarket a strategy that works for you. And our friends in the legal team and across our range of fund administration services can pitch in, too, to give you the best possible start.


And if you have more general questions about developing your brand or positioning your firm, please contact me, using the details below.