November 14, 2012

Guggenheim Launches Alternative Investment Platform

Advisors will have access to 50 hedge fund managers

Guggenheim Investment Advisory announced Wednesday that it had launched of the Guggenheim Alternatives Platform, a web-based platform designed for independent advisors. The platform enables advisors to “build and implement customized hedge fund portfolios for their clients by connecting them to Guggenheim Investment Advisory's deeply researched menu of hedge fund managers, according to the company.

"We made it easy to use," Michael Christ, head of Guggenheim Investment Advisory, told AdvisorOne at Schwab Impact 2012 in Chicago. "We come from the advisory world, so we understand the issues they’re confronted with in getting access to hedge fund managers.”

The platform is unique, he said, not only in the access it grants to managers, but also in the supply, support, research themes and allocation concepts it offers. The investment team consists of 40 individuals that “are all seasoned, come from various backgrounds and speak the nine languages of across 10 countries.”

“We created the platform for ourselves in 2006,” Christ noted. “We used it to solve for our own needs, so therefore made it available to advisors.”

He added that the platform is flexible, and “can fit into the investment philosophies of our advisors” in three ways.

“The first is that they can pick managers off of a 50-managers list. If you think about the size of the hedge fund universe, there are 10,000 managers, so we scoured the industry for the best.”

The second method is that advisors “can take some of our guidance in regards to market themes and invest in that manner.”

The third, Christ said, is that they can invest in one of the firm’s strategy portfolios, which cover the gamut of alternatives.

“It’s an institutionalized approach, and we separate out the due diligence on the operational side from that of the investment side.”

Specific characteristics of the platform include:

  • Access to 50 hedge fund managers
  • Investment minimums beginning at $100,000
  • Coverage of a range of strategies, including distressed, multi-strategy, equity long/short, opportunistic credit, trading/macro and commodities, across major and emerging geographies
  • Integration with the Depository Trust and Clearing Corporation's (DTCC) Alternative Investment Products (AIP) protocol, which provides monitoring of all funds on the Guggenheim Alternatives Platform
  • Opportunities to access capacity-constrained managers
  • Thematic portfolio construction guidance and analytic tools
  • A web-based implementation process
  • Immediate and ongoing guidance and support from Guggenheim Investment Advisory's investment, operational and client service teams

"We are delivering a flexible and scalable way for advisors to access what we think are the best hedge fund managers and give them the resources to effectively implement solutions for their clients," said Christ.

Guggenheim Partners currently has $160 billion in assets under management with 25 offices in eight countries.

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