"The Race Is On" For World-Class Capabilities As Alternative Investors Navigate For New Alpha

Experts at Gravitas Trends 2013 discuss new rules of the road for the alternatives industry

The growing dominance of institutional investors and unprecedented complexities of the regulatory environment will drive hedge funds and private equity firms to embrace scale and operational expertise at an accelerated pace in 2013, according to Gravitas, a co-sourcing platform providing technology, risk support, research and business consulting to the alternative investment industry. These were among the forecasts from industry experts at the seventh annual Gravitas Trends event, held yesterday in New York City.

“The alternative asset industry is ever adapting” said Philip Vasan, Managing Director and Global Head of Prime Services for Credit Suisse, the Gravitas Trends 2013 keynote speaker and a panel moderator. “The coming year will see hedge fund managers and their private equity counterparts continue to explore ways to improve delivery for their clients, both in the pursuit of alpha and the best practices around it.”

“The seeds of a new era in the alternative investment industry are being sown today,” said Gravitas CEO Jayesh Punater. “They include the emergence of institutional and sovereign investors as the new ruling class, a regulatory environment that is more challenging than ever, combined with a continuing need to deliver sustainable alpha. In addition to achieving scale, hedge fund and private equity managers will need to do more than manage money in this new era in order to be a world-class manager. The race is on to become a world-class business.”

During the opening panel, Gravitas Trends Presents: PE Periscope, Bloomberg reporter and author Jason Kelly and Joseph Baratta, Global Head of Private Equity for Blackstone, discussed the increasing convergence of hedge funds and private equity as both industries look to adapt their business models to enhance revenue streams and diversify their offerings for a wide array of investors. Mr. Kelly is the author of the newly published The New Tycoons: Inside the Trillion-Dollar Private Equity Industry That Owns Everything.

The second panel of the evening, “Critical Operational Issues in the Coming Year,” looked at the variety of issues – spanning regulatory, infrastructure, talent and processes – that will define the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. Moderated by Mr. Vasan, the panel featured: Michael Gismondi, Partner and COO at TPG-Axon; Westley Chapman, CEO and Co-founder of Cole Hill Alternatives; Christopher Hayward, Managing Partner and COO of Highbridge Capital Management; and Stephen Casner, CEO of HazelTree.

About Gravitas

Named “Best Overall Technology Provider for 2012” by HFM Week, Gravitas is a leading provider of co-sourcing solutions for technology, investment operations, risk and research support to the alternative investment and financial services industry. Founded in 1996, the company provides hedge funds, private equity funds and other alternative asset managers with unique and flexible co-sourced offerings for systems integration, technical support, software development, investment operations, risk analytics, investment research support and more. From co-sourcing and advisory through implementation, Gravitas designs creative solutions that give clients the operational freedom to invest, innovate, and scale. The company is based in New York with offices in Chicago, Greenwich, Mumbai and Ahmedabad, India. www.gravitas.co