Magazine issues » June 2017

ALTINVESTOR ROUND-UP: Keeping it in the family

Altinvestor_meetingThe first AltInvestor conference, in Singapore, was a forum for family offices and the fund managers that serve them to share information and debate. Funds Global Asia was media partner to the event. The huge rise in wealth in Asia in the past few decades has created more than a few millionaires. Many of these are the heads of family businesses and, of course, highly ambitious. As they consider retiring from their main duties with the firm, and putting in place succession planning, the aim is not merely to liquidate their assets. Far more commonly, the hope is to create a dynasty that will continue to protect and enrich their descendants. Analysts call the entrepreneurs and self-made businesspeople who created Asian family fortunes the ‘first generation’ wealthy. They are ageing. According to some estimates, 60% of Asian family offices expect a generation transition within the next ten years. The children, however, have different tastes and dreams to their parents. They may be far more open to diversifying the family business or, perhaps, selling parts of it to fund investments that will yield a regular income, allowing them to pursue other interests. How can the professionals who staff family offices, and the fund companies which count them as clients, respond to what has been called a ‘succession tsunami’? That was one of the key questions discussed at AltInvestor, a two-day conference organised in Singapore by Eurekahedge, a provider of financial data on hedge funds and other investment instruments. Experts
The conference included representatives from a range of organisations either managing or advising on the management of Asian family fortunes, including the Hwa Family Office, the Japan Family Office Association, the Sandaire Family Investment Office, the Taurus Family Office and others. A range of banks were also present, such as Mizuho Bank, UBS and State Street. From the world of funds came a number of specialist asset managers, many of them working in the alternatives space. The conference also featured institutional investors such as two notable Canadian pension schemes, an Australian pension scheme and a former chief investment strategist at Sweden’s AP2 scheme. Representatives from Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, GIC, were also in attendance. Over two days, delegates discussed the challenges of managing family fortunes, the differences between Asian capital markets and those of the West, the cost and value of private banking, and the potential impact of technology such as artificial intelligence on the world of institutional investment. 2017 funds global asia

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