Australia Operational Leaders Summit

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Venue: Four Seasons Hotel, Sydney | 23 May, 2017

8.45-9.30            Registration and breakfast

9.30-10.15         Home and away: Preparing your fund for international investment

According to data recently released by Prequin, Australia-based hedge funds have outperformed their APAC, European and North American counterparts over an annualized five-year period with an average 7.72% vs. 6.46%, 2.59% and 5.31% respectively, giving investors from other jurisdictions more reasons to look at these further afield funds as a more viable option for decent returns

Talking points:

  • An overview of the current allocator market in Australia – how is investor sentiment currently? Are you seeing increased interest from family offices and HNWIs as an alternative to the tough to reach superannuation cash?
  • When looking outside Australia, which jurisdictions make the most sense to bring in capital from?
  • How do you set about marketing and preparing your infrastructure for foreign capital investment?
  • Distribution – how do you find effective partners around Australasia and further afield to distribute your products?
  • Where are you seeing investor interest come from outside Australia? Are there particular strategies these investors are keen to come to Australian managers for?
  • What compliance elements do you have to consider when taking in investor capital from other jurisdictions?
  • What kinds of operational difficulties might be considered when marketing to foreign investors? Are there any other additional costs and constraints on infrastructure required for international investors?
  • How do you ensure you’re performing adequate due diligence on potential investors? Are there any additional DD concerns with investors outside of your usual jurisdiction?
  • Is the additional compliance and admin associated with bringing foreign investors on board always worth the time and effort?

10.15-11.00       Exploring creative fee structures

Australia is home to some of the most fee-sensitive investors in the world. This panel will look at how funds are successfully navigating tough fee expectations from their investors, and look at innovative and emerging structures aiming to suit both sides

Talking points:

  • How are fees generally constructed in today’s world – are you considering new types of structure- eg “1 of 30”-type arrangements?
  • How much of a strain on resources does disclosing fees and costs in product disclosure statements (PDSs) take?
  • How are fee expectations from investors evolving?
  • Do expectations from private and institutional investors differ? How can you effectively appeal to both?
  • Would you consider looking at structures which at first glance may not look appealing to the fund – e.g introducing hurdles, lowering or abolishing a management fee?
  • How do smaller managers compete with the larger counterparts, who can afford to take more of a hit when it comes to fees? How do you maintain a competitive edge?
  • Where do you see fees heading in the next five or ten years? Will investor demands become untenable?

11.00-11.30        Refreshment break

11.30-12.15        Allocator Q and A

12.15-1.30pm     Lunch

1.30-2.15pm       Roundtables

Reg. 97, AMIT and additional ASIC priorities

  • Funds must adhere to ASIC’s updated guidelines under Regulation 97 relating to fee disclosures from mid-2017
  • The changes dictate that any fees or costs reducing the ultimate investment return must be disclosed – how have you tackled the integration of this new legislation?
  • What fundamental changes are you making in-house, and are there any challenges you have come across?
  • Impacts arising from Australia’s Attribution Managed Investment Trust (AMIT) tax regime – discussion of challenges and issues arising from the new legislation
  • How are you handling this regulatory burden, are there any additional points of contention with this regulation?
  • ASIC unveiled three priorities for 2016-17 – cyber resilience and technology disruption, firm culture and conduct, and handling of confidential information and managing conflicts of interest in research and corporate advisory.
  • Discussion around these areas, how your fund has improved its internal procedures relating to each

Striking the right outsourcing balance as you scale up  (Joined by Apex Australia MD – Rajiv Kalra).

  • Scaling up – many hedge funds outgrow their current infrastructure with one large cash injection; how can you build on your operational infrastructure one piece at a time so that this doesn’t come as a shock to the system?
  • Are there any new outsourcing elements that you’re turning to as you grow in size?
  • IT spend is becoming a larger part of many funds’ budgets – how do you know which parts and even traditionally in-house positions to outsource?
  • How can you adequately assess new outsourcing providers and solutions?
  • Do you use one main outsourcing provider or split the work (and the risk) between several?
  • Cash-saving while you’re raising – how effective are disruptive solutions currently entering the market, such as using a shared office space rather than a traditional office in your first few years?

Navigating cyber compliance: Combatting ongoing threats & emerging dangers

  • How cyber-savvy does today’s COO need to be? Is the relationship with your CTO evolving due to the compliance and infrastructure risks posed by cyber threats?
  • Tips for firms relying on outsource providers and third party relationships – data storage, risk mitigation and a plan of action
  • Dangers coming from both external and internal parties
  • Social media as another line of attack – what should staff post/how should they act? Should each fund have a protocol for staff to follow?
  • Mobile devices: What procedures should be undertaken with personal products such as cell phones, tablets and useful, put potentially ‘leaky’ apps like evernote and dropbox?
  • With new risk mitigation techniques being floated on a seemingly weekly basis, is the idea of a chief cyber security officer being taken seriously by funds?
  • If so, what would their responsibilities look like?
  • Is cyber insurance worth the cost?
  • What is the one cyber-security takeaway each COO should implement into their business today?

A guide to global regulation

  • Mifid II – how might Australian managers trading European markets be affected by this upcoming European regulation?
  • Could there be an Australian version of MiFID II? What might this look like?
  • CRS/FATCA – how have you been impacted? Update on any implementation issues and how you address the added complexities
  • How might your operations be affected by any regulatory rulings made during President Trump’s tenure?
  • AIFMD – Any new issues which have made themselves apparent, best execution tips
  • How might Brexit impact your working relationship with any UK-based investors?
  • Dealing with local regulators in Hong Kong and Singapore – how easy are cross border transactions? Have you been impacted by Hong Kong’s recently implemented Private Investor rule?
  • New regulatory issues to be aware of in 2017 and beyond

2.15-3pm         Roundtables (repeat of previous sessions)

3-3.30pm         Refreshment break

3.30-4.15pm     Roundtables (repeat of previous sessions)

4.15-5.15pm    Drinks reception

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