What is Fund Administration?

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What is Fund Administration? The Basics:

 

Essentially, a fund administrator is an outsourced third party service provider that protects the interests of investors by independently verifying the assets and valuation of the fund. By outsourcing the fund administration function, fund managers are allowed the freedom to focus on portfolio management internally. Typically, fund administration comprises two parts: fund accounting and the activities of registrar/transfer agent.

 

The traditional role of a fund administrator includes the following services:

 

  • Daily, weekly and monthly Net asset Value calculation (NAV)
  • Calculation of the fund’s income and expense accruals and the pricing of securities at current market value
  • Financial reporting
  • Financial statement preparation and audit liaison
  • Opening and control of fund bank accounts
  • Preparation of reports to shareholders
  • Reconciliation of the broker, custodian, bank and investment manager statements
  • Accounting services; maintenance and filing of the fund’s financial books and records
  • Payment of fund expenses
  • Settlement of daily purchases and sales of securities, ensuring collection of dividends and interests
  • Calculation and payment of dividends and distributions to the transfer agent
  • Preparation and filing of local regulatory body filings/reports
  • Pricing the portfolio of the fund
  • Calculation of the total returns and other performance measures of the fund
  • Compliance and anti-money laundering monitoring and reporting
  • Supervision of the orderly liquidation and dissolution of the fund (if required)

 

Why is Apex different? An Evolving Fund Administrator

 

Apex Group, established in Bermuda in 2003, is one of the world’s largest specialist fund administration and middle office solutions providers. The globally distributed service model is delivered by over 600 staff, across 23 full service centres and an additional 10 sales offices.

 

Apex has continually improved and evolved its product suite by surrounding its core administrative services with additional products spanning the full value chain; from information delivery and regulatory products to capital introduction services. Agility in service provision is essential for a fund administrator to really add value to its clients. As Apex noticed an increasing demand for private equity and real estate administration specialists, it quickly evolved to implement several private equity centres of excellence across its global network of offices.

 

Through partnering with a fund administrator like Apex, managers can feel confident that their service provision is scalable dependent on the direction of the fund(s). If managers decide to invest cross-boarder, Apex can support this strategy through its global reach, expertise and plethora of regulatory products supporting compliance with both local and global directives/standards.

 

Not only are all the traditional fund administration services and products available through Apex, fund managers can benefit from growth support products via Apex’s capital introduction services. This nimble approach to client service and wide ranging product offering can only be made available through a truly independent fund administrator.

 

Alongside the continued investment in experienced personnel, advanced technology, and innovation in the product offering, Apex sets itself apart from other fund administrators through its focus and dedication to strong and long lasting personal relationships with clients.

 

Peter Hughes, Chairman and Founder said, “I founded Apex with a very clear objective – to work locally alongside clients to provide a fast, effective and locally tailored service. Strong client relationships have been, and always will be, at the heart of the Apex philosophy. The commitment to staying true to this goal has played a huge part in our ability to expand Apex’s services across the world. Our global network of offices are focused on delivering services locally, with good ethics, to both our clients and staff”.

 

How to select a fund administrator:

 

There are a few key items to consider when selecting a fund administrator and each of these should be part of manager’s due diligence process when seeking a suitable partner:

 

  1. Robust operational infrastructure and internal controls
  2. Shareholder administration
  3. Quality of systems, automation and straight through servicing
  4. Scalability and expertise
  5. Provision of corporate secretarial and directorship services

 

As the fund industry continues to evolve and managers seek new ways to diversify their portfolios to please investors, choosing a fund administrator will be increasing driven by the complexity of the products on offer and response to evolution in fund requirements.

 

Fund administration across different asset classes can differ quite dramatically due the nature of investment activity and can be complex, depending as fund management does it does on strategy, structure and volume; for example long-only fund managers and hedge fund managers require different services and therefore specialist capabilities are vital to the smooth operation of a fund. Partnering with an independent specialist with true expertise in both the fund’s asset class but also with in-depth knowledge and understanding of the fund’s jurisdictional regulation wherever it may be located in the world can truly impact the success of a fund therefore assessment and reassessment of the effectiveness of a fund’s administrator provider is important.

 

Changing Administrator – is switching difficult?

 

10 simple steps to changing your administrator.

Bar Charts
 
Fund Administration Services
 

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