Tag Archives | hedge funds

Amid Performance Woes, the Hedge Fund Industry Wisely Turns to Investor Relations

Financial CRM May Help Hedge Fund Managers with Investor Relations and Fund Performance

The hedge fund industry is facing something of an identity crisis at the moment. Slumping performance figures and investor revolt against the standard “2 and 20” fee model is forcing a shakeout: 291 hedge funds shuttered in the first quarter of 2016, offset by only 206 new funds started up, according to fresh data from Hedge Fund Research. Last year saw the most closures since 2009.

Survivors of the fallout are asked to slash costs and explain again how they outperform the market net of fees. Over the past five years, hedge funds provided investors a measly 1.7 percent return, according to the HFRI Fund Weighted Composite Index. Had that money been invested in the S&P 500 instead, the average annualized return would have been 11 percent.

If things don’t improve, expect more hedge fund outfits to struggle during fundraising. Already the $300 billion California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), seen as both a bellwether and pacesetter for other institutional investors, has left the sector. Other big-name investors, including MetLife, American International Group and the New York City pension plan are reportedly set to do the same.

Which makes the timing of a new release from the Alternative Investment Management Association (AIMA) so important. Last week, the hedge fund trade body published an investor relations best practices manual that touches on everything from pre-meeting planning to on-boarding procedures to crisis management. The guidelines are only being made available to AIMA members, but a scan of its executive summary hints at just how much thought and effort went behind its creation.  Continue Reading →

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Can Salesforce.com or Navatar Help Alternative Assets Avoid Hurricane Sandy Problems?

Hurricane Sandy appears to be heading toward a major area for Private Equity, Hedge Fund and VC’s, the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast.  The big storm could bring power outages and flooding along with other damage the beginning of this week.

For those alternative assets firms still relying on on-premise equipment, they have the weekend to work on business continuance issues. We hope that they have data backed up to a remote site with some provision for  employees to work from home by dialing into a remote server using encryption.  If they don’t have a remotely backed site, they need to plan for power issues, lost telephone service  and potential damage to the closet or data center that houses their equipment.

We expect the storm to be less of an issue for firms that are using Cloud computing. For example, in the case of Navatar private equity, hedge fund, M&A along with Corporate M&A and VCclients, their data is stored in more than one location (salesforce.com servers mirrored and backed up across data centers). They can expect to face the loss of power but fortunately battery powered laptops, iPads, iPhones, BlackBerrys and Android devices can bridge the gap until power comes back up. Because of a couple of storms last year, many of the people I know in Connecticut now have generators at their homes that will not only save the food in their freezers but will allow them to work without interruption.  By the way, the Navatar Support Team is geographically dispersed so they will not be affected and available to support customers.

The biggest vulnerability for the Cloud clients is losing access to the Internet. It just takes one tree to take out cable delivered broad band service. Fortunately, there is cellular data coverage as an alternative. Most people have access to more than one smart phone. It might make sense to forgo the family plan and put one of your phones on AT&T and have another member of the family use Verizon or some other service. If you do lose service you still have the option of driving to another location (unless that tree that knocked the wires down happens to be blocking your way).

One situation that’s a challenge for both those with either the on-premise or Cloud model is having the schools closed for week with the kids home. As a private equity executive told me today, that scenario really makes it hard to get work done!

 

 

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Are Free Salesforce Implementations for Real?

Is there such a thing as a free lunch??

After Navatar made the announcement for free services for Salesforce, here are a just a few of several questions I received:

How will you make money?”

Free – Ha Ha...”

Very interesting … still digesting what it means..”

The questions were genuine and?their underlying theme was clear – everyone seemed very?surprised since they didn’t think it was possible to provide any services free of cost. They were trying to figure out what the catch was.

There really is no catch. This is the way it is supposed to be in the cloud computing model. Cloud products are not physically installed for each customer the way on premise products are. True cloud products are multitenant and share databases, infrastructure and labor. Which means that the costs of implementing, maintaining, supporting and innovating can be shared too. That’s why, when you buy a cloud product you are supposed to get most services related to product implementation and support free of cost. It’s as simple as that.

All said and done, this is still a concept that will take some time to stomach – particularly, for folks that are like myself and have spent almost a couple of decades in the technology world, have long made a living implementing and maintaining software and have seen several fads come and go (I too spent years helping Deloitte and PwC make money on systems integration work). So their skepticism is understandable.

But there’s another category of doubters – those that have bought into the idea that implementing Salesforce for your business is simple enough to be accomplished with a few button clicks while playing poker. It’s often hard for them to see the value of what we offer (at least initially) since they are driven by the notion that it’s an easy DIY job. However, they typically realize after 6-12 months that the task of getting Salesforce to support their business, though not as daunting as plugging an oil well leak, can be extremely cumbersome and distracting.

So the answer is: No, we are not offering free lunches. Cost is one of the important advantages that Cloud Computing delivers – services costs are a big part of the TCO of software that the cloud promises to reduce. Real Cloud Product Companies will offer low cost subscriptions to useful, out-of-the-box (or, shall we say, out-of-the-cloud) products without charging customers for services – which is what we at Navatar are doing. The idea is that every Hedge Fund (or every Broker/Dealer or every Mutual Fund) doesn’t have to spend time and money doing the same thing just to implement and support software. Once customers see that value, they will be the real winners.

Alok Misra

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Placement Agent CRM Released

Placement Agents have been in the news a lot recently and some of the stories haven’t been particularly friendly to the profession. Now, there’s some good news – a product that will make their jobs easier.

The product is designed to:

Manage prospective clients (both sell side and buy side)
Manage sell and buy side relationships
Manage fund sales
Conduct Due Diligence on Funds (Fund Managers)
Quickly and easily generate client reports and client metrics (dashboards)
Track CRM activity including calls, meetings and emails Mass mailings

Navatar Group has built this product on top of the force.com platform (it is 100% native to the salesforce.com programming). We are long-time salesforce.com partners headquartered in New York (44 Wall Street). We specialize in financial markets (hedge funds, fund of funds, mutual funds and private equity).

Allan Siegert

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Hedge Fund CRM

NEW YORK, April 21, 2009 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Navatar Group, a global salesforce.com partner in financial services, today announced several new customers, including KStone Partners, Kelvingrove Partners and Zebra Capital. The firms are using Navatar’s customized CRM for Hedge Funds, a cloud computing application to manage hedge fund and fund of funds operations. Navatar CRM for Hedge Funds is built and run entirely on the Force.com platform from salesforce.com and is available on the Force.com AppExchange. http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/news.html?d=163434

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