Close Close
Popular Financial Topics Discover relevant content from across the suite of ALM legal publications From the Industry More content from ThinkAdvisor and select sponsors Investment Advisor Issue Gallery Read digital editions of Investment Advisor Magazine Tax Facts Get clear, current, and reliable answers to pressing tax questions
Luminaries Awards

Technology > Investment Platforms

ICapital to Buy UBS Alt Feeder Fund Platform: Tech Roundup

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.

What You Need to Know

  • UBS's AlphaKeys Funds is the latest alt feeder fund platform that iCapital plans to acquire.
  • SEI Data Cloud was developed to address demand for more advanced data integration.
  • Morgan Stanley at Work expanded fractional share trading capabilities.

UBS and iCapital entered into a definitive agreement under which iCapital will acquire UBS Fund Advisor, the wirehouse’s legacy proprietary U.S. alternative investment manager and the feeder fund platform it manages.

The platform, widely referred to as AlphaKeys Funds, represents over $7 billion in client assets, the companies said Tuesday in a joint announcement.

Terms of the transaction, expected to close in the second half of 2022, were not disclosed.

As part of the deal, iCapital will take control of the management and operation of the platform, which includes private equity, hedge fund and real estate feeder funds, the firms said.

But UBS Financial Advisors will continue to serve its high- and ultra-high net worth clients that hold feeder funds as the company always has, “providing advice and solutions to help meet their unique needs and financial goals,” according to the companies.

iCapital and UBS already had a “long-standing global relationship … through which we utilize our market-leading technology to facilitate the management of [the UBS] direct and feeder funds on a single platform and offer their advisors the tools they need to be successful,” Lawrence Calcano, iCapital CEO and chairman, said in the announcement.

The new pact expands that relationship to include management of UBS Fund Advisor and the feeder fund platform, he said.

UBS became an investor in iCapital in 2017 and entered into a strategic relationship with the company to structure new feeder funds for UBS to distribute. At that time, UBS also integrated iCapital’s proprietary technology into its private fund operations to streamline and automate its alternative investment offerings.

In 2021, the strategic partnership was enhanced to further digitize the UBS Advisor experience, enhancing the information and analytics of clients’ private market investments across its international locations, including Hong Kong, Singapore and Switzerland.

ICapital previously acquired: a business that administered Morgan Stanley’s alternative investment feeder funds, assuming oversight of 115 Morgan Stanley feeder funds, in 2019; Bank of America’s alternative investment feeder fund operations in 2018; Wells Fargo Investment Institute’s Global Alternative Investments Feeder Fund Platform in 2020; and Stifel’s alternative investment feeder fund platform in March 2022.

As of July 31, iCapital serviced over $136 billion in global client assets, of which more than $32 billion were from investors outside the U.S., across more than 1,080 funds, it said.

SEI Data Cloud Launches

SEI on Monday announced the launch of SEI Data Cloud through a strategic partnership with data cloud company Snowflake.

SEI Data Cloud, Powered by Snowflake, was developed to “address the financial services industry’s demand for more advanced data integration,” the company said. It provides a “scalable, cloud-based data platform that clients globally can access directly” via the SEI Wealth Platform or as a standalone service, according to the firm.

Users of SEI Data Cloud will have access to modern delivery capabilities that the firm said include: on-demand access to real-time data; business event-based alerts and notifications; ease of information consumption; and Analytics-as-a-Service.

The company intends to “initially leverage Snowflake as a data delivery and analytics platform for SWP clients, providing users access to information in real time and enabling an enterprise view of information,” it said.

SEI already has two early adopters of SEI Data Cloud and is “engaging with multiple clients to roll out the solution,” it added without identifying the initial adopters.

Looking to the future, the company said it plans to offer enterprise information delivery, reporting and analytics capabilities to all clients across the financial services spectrum.

As of June 30, SEI managed, advised or administered about $1.3 trillion in assets, it noted.

Morgan Stanley at Work Makes Enhancements

Morgan Stanley at Work on Thursday announced three strategic product enhancements to its stock plan platforms Equity Edge Online and Shareworks that it said were “designed to streamline functionality for Morgan Stanley at Work’s corporate clients and their workplace participants.”

With the technology upgrades, corporate clients using the platforms will “experience new processes that drive efficiency, increase productivity, and boost satisfaction,” it said.

New tech capabilities and features on the platforms include:

  • Expanded fractional shares transaction capabilities in Shareworks and EEO that allow stock plan participants to trade any fractional portion of their equity shares — or sell just enough to cover taxes and keep the rest.
  • A fully automated leave of absence administration process in Shareworks in which stock plan administrators don’t have to manually update individual vest schedules when a participant goes on leave and/or returns. Plan administrators can now handle this frequent occurrence automatically with a simple status rule, which saves time and minimizes errors, the firm said.
  • A new automation framework in EEO called Workflows enabling stock plan administrators to build custom automated processes, reducing individual manual steps. The automated Workflows “help administrators coordinate and deploy end-to-end processes in the platform, store whatever parameters they need, isolate specific populations of participants, and run workflows for specific events — all from one place,” according to the company.

(Image: Shutterstock) 


© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.