CEF Launch: BlueArc, Princeton, Griffin-Benefit Street, Yorke Capital, Wildermuth and BNY Mellon Alcentra

In this edition of CEF Launch, an overview of filings from:

BlueArc Multi Strategy Fund
Princeton Private Equity Fund
Griffin-Benefit Street Partners BDC Corp.
Yorke Capital Corporation
Wildermuth Endowment Strategy Fund 
BNY Mellon Alcentra Multi-Strategy Credit Fund, Inc.

BlueArc Multi Strategy Fund

On December 23, BlueArc Capital Management, LLC and Keel Point Advisors, LLC filed paperwork with the SEC for the launch of the BlueArc Multi Strategy Fund.  The fund will only be offered to “accredited investors” through a private placement and will pursue an investment objective of long-term capital appreciation by investing in hedge funds.  The co-advisers collectively have $1.4 billion of assets under management as of October 31.

Princeton Private Equity Fund

On December 22, Princeton Fund Advisors filed amended paperwork with the SEC for the launch of the Princeton Private Equity Fund.  The fund will only be offered to “accredited investors” through a private placement and will pursue an investment objective of long-term capital appreciation by investing in private equity funds.  The adviser had $1.21 billion in assets under management as of July 31, managing managed futures, midstream energy infrastructure, event driven/long-short fixed income and tactical long/short US equity strategies.  The adviser is an affiliate of Mount Yale Capital Group, LLC, which had approximately $.25 billion in assets under management as of July 31, managing assets using the following strategies:  private equity leveraged buyout, international equity, absolute return, equity hedged global multi-strategy, and low volatility multi-strategy. 

Griffin-Benefit Street Partners BDC Corp.

On December 22, Griffin Capital BDC Advisor, LLC filed amended paperwork with the SEC for the launch of Griffin-Benefit Street Partners BDC Corp., another unlisted business development company that is expected to launch in 2015.  The fund, which will pursue an investment objective of generating both current income and capital appreciation, is seeking to raise up to $1.5 billion.  The fund is sub-advised by Benefit Street Partners L.L.C., an affiliate of Providence Equity Partners L.L.C., a private equity and credit firm that manages over $40 billion.

Yorke Capital Corporation

On December 18, Yorke Capital Management, LLC filed amended paperwork with the SEC for the launch of Yorke Capital Corporation, another unlisted business development company that is expected to launch in 2015.  The fund, which will pursue an investment objective of generating current income from its debt investments in lower middle market companies and obtaining capital appreciation from equity and equity-related investments, is seeking to raise up to $200 million. 

Wildermuth Endowment Strategy Fund

On December 17, Wildermuth Advisory, LLC filed its final amended paperwork with the SEC for the launch of the Wildermuth Endowment Strategy Fund, a closed-end interval fund that launched on December 22.  The fund, which will be distributed by Realty Capital Securities, will pursue an investment objective of seeking total return through a combination of long-term capital appreciation and income generation through replicating allocation strategies used by endowment funds.  In particular, the fund is expected to be diversified across a broad range of assets:

•    Up to 65% in U.S. and non-U.S. equity securities, including private equity investments 
•    Up to 25% in publicly-traded and non-traded REITs and other real estate investments
•    Up to 25% in energy and natural resource investments, including, but not limited to MLPs, oil and gas funds and other energy and natural resource funds
•    Up to 25% in commodity investments, including, but not limited to, commodity pools and precious metal holdings
•    Up to 25% in absolute return investments, including but not limited, to managed futures funds, hedge funds and other absolute return investment vehicles such as registered investment companies pursuing absolute return strategies
•    Up to 30% U.S. and non-U.S. fixed income securities, including, but not limited to, notes, bonds, and asset-backed securities

The advisor is affiliated with Kalos Financial, Inc. and its affiliated RIA and broker dealer businesses. The fund is seeking to raise up to $250 million.  

BNY Mellon Alcentra Multi-Strategy Credit Fund, Inc.

Following the success of Alcentra Capital Corp.’s IPO earlier this year, BNY Mellon Alcentra are seeking to launch an unlisted limited duration closed-end fund in a joint project with affiliate The Dreyfus Corporation. On December 16, Dreyfus filed its initial paperwork with the SEC for the launch of the BNY Mellon Alcentra Mult-Strategy Credit Fund.  The fund, which will be distributed by Dreyfus’ affiliated distributor MBSC Securities Corporation, will pursue an investment objective of seeking a total return consisting of capital appreciation and income by investing across the credit spectrum, including senior secured loans, subordinated loans, special situations, structured credit, and corporate debt.  The fund will only be offered to those that meet the “qualified client” standard.  


Goldman Seeks to Enter ETF Space With a Splash

On December 12, Goldman Sachs, which currently manages two ETNs, but no ETFs, filed paperwork with the SEC to launch up to 11 ETFs focused on so-called "smart beta" and hedge fund replication strategies.  Six of the funds will be marketed using an "ActiveBeta" brand, focusing on international, EM, Europe, Japan, US large cap, and US small cap equity.  The other five funds will focus on hedge fund strategies such as relative value, equity long short, event driven and macro, as well as a multi strategy offering.  For more information, click here, here and here.

Liquid Alt Outflows Positive in November Despite High Volume of MainStay Outflows

According to Morningstar’s Alternative category research, alternatives managed $254 million in net inflows in the month of November notwithstanding another month of massive outflows in MainStay's Marketfield Fund. The funds with passive strategies, which typically comprise less than a third of the Alternative category, maintained positive asset flows sufficient to overcome outflows to actively managed funds.  For more information, click here.

Gemini Offers Multi-Manager CTA Fund

Gemini Alternative Funds, LLC has launched the Galaxy Plus Fund, a Delaware series limited liability company offering qualified investors access to a select group of commodity trading advisors, including Buttonwood, LLC, Quantica Capital AG,  Revolution Capital Management, LLC, Row Asset Management, LLC and SkyBridge Capital II, LLC. For more information, click here.  

Cuomo Vetos Bill Permitting Pensions to Invest More Assets in Alternatives

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo vetoed a bill that would have allowed New York state, city and teachers pension funds, with combined assets in excess of $445 billion, to allocate a larger percentage of their investment assets to hedge funds, private equity and international bonds. The bill would have increased the cap on such investments to 30 percent from 25 percent.  In rejecting a proposal that not only passed the state legislature, but also had the strong backing of NYC Controller Scott Stringer, Governor Cuomo cited concerns similar to those raised by CalPERs in September - namely low returns in exchange for the higher fees, risk, and complexity associated with such strategies.  For more information, click here and here.   

Janus Lines Up to Compete with Goldman for Alt ETFs

On the heels of Goldman Sachs' application to the SEC to launch alternative ETFs, Janus Capital Group filed an application to the SEC on December 18 to launch alternative ETFs as part of its efforts to capitalize on its recent acquisition of VelocityShares.  At least initially, Janus is seeking to launch ETFs with long/short strategies that have both long (130/30) and short biases.  For more information, click here and here.

Volcker Ban Extended by Fed, Banks Can Hold PE and Hedge Fund Investments Until at least 2016

The Federal Reserve extended the deadline to July 2016 for banks to sell investments in private equity and hedge funds to as part of the Volcker Rule. The delay only affects funds owned by banks prior to December 31, 2013.  The Fed also indicated that it intended to grant a further extension of the deadline to July 2017 sometime in 2015.  The Volcker Rule's ban on proprietary trading remains unchanged.  For more information, click here.

CEF Launch: Resource Credit, Pomona, Altegris KKR and Forefront

In this edition of CEF Launch, an overview of fund filings from:

Resource Credit Income Fund
Pomona Private Equity Fund
Altegris KKR Private Equity Fund
Forefront Income Trust

Resource Credit Income Fund

On December 16, Resource Financial Fund Management, Inc. filed paperwork with the SEC for the launch of the Resource Credit Income Fund, an unlisted closed-end interval fund that has an investment objective of producing current income, with a secondary objective of achieving long-term capital appreciation with moderate volatility and low to moderate correlation to the broader equity markets.  The fund intends to meet its investment objectives by investing in the debt of small- to middle-market companies, including investments in fixed-income oriented funds.

The adviser is affiliated with Resource America, Inc., an asset management company that manages approximately $19.4 billion as of September 30.  The fund is seeking to raise up to $500 million and will be distributed by ALPS Distributors.  For more information, click here.  

Pomona Private Equity Fund

On December 15, Pomona Management, LLC filed amended paperwork with the SEC for the launch of the Pomona Private Equity Fund, an unlisted closed-end fund.  The fund will be offered to “accredited investors” through a ’33 Act registered offering and will pursue an investment objective of long-term capital appreciation by investing in private equity funds, with a primary focus of investing in PE secondaries.  

Pomona Management, the adviser, was founded more than 20 years ago and manages more than $8.5 billion in committed capital, is a global, value-oriented private equity firm specializing in investing across the private equity spectrum.  The fund will be distributed by Voya Investments Distributor, LLC.  For more information, click here.

Altegris KKR Private Equity Fund

On December 3, Altegris Advisors, L.L.C. filed amended paperwork with the SEC for the launch of the Altegris KKR Private Equity Fund, an unlisted closed-end fund that will invest all of its assets in a related master fund.  The fund will be offered to “accredited investors” through a ’33 Act registered offering and will pursue an investment objective of long-term capital appreciation by investing in private equity funds, with at least 70% of its assets invested in KKR funds.  

Altegris Advisors, L.L.C., the adviser to the master fund, is part of the Altegris Group of Companies and managed more than $1.08 billion in assets of alternative strategy mutual funds as of December 31, 2013.  StepStone Group LP, which is an independently-owned investment firm focused exclusively on private markets and managed approximately $10 billion in assets as of December 31, 2013, will act as the master fund’s sub-adviser.  The fund will be distributed by Altegris Investments, Inc. and is seeking to raise up to $360 million in the feeder fund (load shares) and $375 million in the master fund (no load shares).  For more information, click here and here.

Forefront Income Trust

On December 1, Forefront Capital Advisors, LLC filed its final amended paperwork with the SEC for the launch of Forefront Income Trust, an unlisted closed-end interval fund that launched on December 8.  The fund will pursue an investment objective seeking current income, primarily by investing in junk bonds, high yield loans and debt instruments with maturities of generally not more than three years that represent what the adviser believes to be deep value opportunities.   

The fund will not pay its investment adviser, Forefront Capital Advisors, a management fee, but will pay it an advisory fee only after shareholders receive the first 8.00% of annual pre-advisory fee net investment income.  Thereafter, the adviser will receive 80% of such income above 8.00% to and including 18.00% (while shareholders receive 20%), and 20% of such income above 18.00% (while shareholders receive 80%). The fund is distributed by Northern Lights Distributors, LLC and is seeking to raise up to $100 million.  For more information, click here.

Henderson Launches First Ever International Long/Short Equity Mutual Fund

Henderson Global Investors, an independent global asset manager specializing in active investment with assets under management of $127.7 billion (as of June 30, 2014), launched the Henderson International Long/Short Equity Fund on December 9.  The fund is the first mutual fund with an international long/short equity strategy, with long duration investments in international equities hedged back to the US dollar.  For more information, click here.  

Palmer Square Launches Sixth '40 Act Fund

Palmer Square Capital Management has launched its sixth '40 Act Fund, a long/short credit mutual fund, as part of UMB's Investment Managers Series Trust.  The firm's other '40 Act funds include the following: 

  • Absolute Return Fund
  • Income Plus Fund
  • Opportunistic Income Fund
  • Alternative Income Fund
  • Fountain Short Duration High Income Fund

Palmer Square, which manages approximately $4.3 billion in assets, is part of Montage Investments, a group of institutional investment managers that together manage nearly $27 billion for a wide range of investors. Montage supports Palmer Square’s distribution efforts through its team of 38 distribution professionals located throughout the US.  For more information, click here and here.

 

Survey of financial advisors indicates reversal of trend of advisors recommending use of alternatives

In WealthManagement.com's 2014 Advisor Benchmarking Trend Report, 70% of advisors recommend alternative investments for either many or a select few of their clients, which represents a decline from 2013 and several years of upward trends.  Further, the percentage of advisors reporting that they are unlikely to recommend alternatives increased from 17% to 24%. For more information about this section of the Trend Report, click here.

Back to the drawing board for prospective nontransparent ETF advisers

After the SEC denied applications from BlackRock and Precidian Investments, active managers seeking to launch less-transparent ETFs need to address not only the agency's concerns about the lack of portfolio transparency, but also those of the market makers that act to prevent investors from being exposed to book to ETF share price arbitrage.  For more information, click here and here.

Building Upon Gross' Arrival, Janus Snaps Up VelocityShares

Janus Capital Group, the traditional mutual fund provider that hired Bill Gross from PIMCO several weeks ago, has jumped headfirst into the active ETF market with the acquisition of VelocityShares for at least $30 million. VelocityShares had raised approximately $2 billion in assets across 21 investment products through the end of September.  For more information, click here.