Alternative Investments 2020 An Introduction to Alternative

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Alternative Investments 2020 An Introduction to Alternative Investments July 2015

World Economic Forum 2015 – All rights reserved.

No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying and recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system.

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Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

Contents Introduction and Scope 2 1 Overview of alternative investments 2 1.1. Definition of alternative investments 2 1.2. Investment characteristics 4 2 A brief history of alternative investment 4 2.1. Laying the foundations for alternative investments 7

2.2. Market events

9 3 Investing in alternative investments 9 3.1. Investment structure 12 3.2. Investment life cycle 13 4 Overview of different types of alternative investments 13 14 15 16

4.1. Hedge funds 4.2. Private equity buyouts 4.3. Venture capital 4.4. Other types of alternative investments

18 5 Sources of capital 18 5.1. Investment drivers 18 5.2. Providers of capital 21 6 Sources of returns 22 6.1. Governance structures 22 6.2. Investment selection 22 6.3. Timing 22 6.4. Risk management 22 6.5. Leverage 22 6.6. Operational improvements 23 6.7. Financial engineering 25 7 Role in the financial system 26 7.1. Leverage 27 7.2. Services 27 7.3. Counterparties 27 7.4. Product innovation 28 8 Role in society and the economy 28 8.1. Capital markets 29 8.2. Real economy 32 33 37 39

Concluding remarks: A look to the future Glossary Acknowledgements Endnotes

Introduction and Scope Accompanying the industry’s rise have been recurring worries that hedge funds destabilize capital markets, private equity investors load firms with debt, strip their assets, then sell the firms in question, and venture capital firms invest in unicorns that may disappear once they are in the hands of the public. While there are indeed examples of this, short-hand indictments do not do the industry as a whole justice. A robust and educated public debate must form the basis for how we – as a society – engage with and regulate it. Over the past three decades, the alternative investments industry has become a critical component of the global financial system and world economy. Its impact on society can be seen across capital markets, in mainstream businesses and board rooms, and as part of the political discourse. Investors in alternatives now deploy trillions of dollars around the world, playing a critical role in supporting global capital markets, and redistributing risk. The industry has given rise to leading investment firms such as the Blackstone Group, Bridgewater Associates, and Sequoia Capital in the United States, CVC Capital and Brevan Howard in Europe, and The Abraaj Group and many other firms focused on emerging markets. It has owned or funded many well-known companies across a range of industries such as Google, Facebook, Motorola, Heinz, Hertz, and Skype. The goal of this report is to provide policymakers, regulators, journalists, and the public with an objective overview of the industry in order to better understand the benefits and risks associated with the industry. We believe this is to be a critically important task, given the industry’s increasingly central role in the economy and society and the often polarized debate about alternatives. We have aimed, as much as possible, to explain the industry in plain English, but some concepts pre-suppose our reader’s fundamental understanding of financial markets and concepts such as liquidity. A list of useful primers on potentially puzzling terms can be found in the appendix. Our hope is that this report clarifies much of the mystery surrounding alternative investments, and provides readers with a framework to evaluate facts in a comprehensive manner. The report answers some fundamental questions that surround alternative investments: ——What are alternative investments? ——Why do alternative investments exist and why have they grown so rapidly? ——Where do alternative investors obtain their capital? ——How do alternative investors generate returns? ——How do alternative investors interact with the financial system? ——What benefit do alternative investors provide to society? ——Why is alternative investing so important for the future and what is shaping the industry? We hope this report provides a foundation and starting point for an ongoing dialogue on the role of alternative investments. We invite feedback and comments and look forward to a robust debate.

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

1

Overview of alternative investments

1. Overview of alternative investments 1.1 Definition of alternative investments In its broadest definition, alternative investment assets are those which are not part of traditional asset classes such as cash, stocks, or bonds that retail investors are most familiar with. Such a definition would encompass investing in mainstream assets such as real estate or commodities or luxury goods such as art or wine. However, for this report, alternatives will be those which have historically utilized distinctive fund structures and which only wealthy individuals and institutions have had access to. Alternatives will thus encompass a wide range of asset classes, including private equity real estate and private equity infrastructure funds, secondary funds, and private debt funds. In particular, this report will focus on three asset classes: private equity buyouts, hedge funds, and venture capital. Historically, these three have played the most important role in the evolution of the industry and have accounted for the vast majority of the capital allocated to alternatives.

1.2. Investment characteristics Alternatives offer investors a distinct set of attributes that are not commonly found in mainstream investments such as public stocks or government or corporate bonds. These typically include one or more of the following attributes: long term, high risk, or illiquid investments that are associated with higher returns; low correlation with traditional assets to deliver diversification benefits; inflation-hedging benefits; and scalability (the ability to absorb large investment sums). Figure 3 shows the degree to which these and other investment attributes are available to investors in each of the three core alternative asset classes.

Figure 1 provides an overview of different types of mainstream and alternative investments, while Figure 2 shows how alternatives fit into the broader cycle of investing savings into businesses or assets.

Figure 1: Overview of different types of investments Traditional investments Cash Government and corporate bonds Public stocks

Tangible investments Commodities Real estate Infrastructure

Other investments Art Antiquities Wine

Core alternative investments Private equity buyouts Hedge funds Venture capital

Other alternative investments

Widely used and accessible to all investors (including retail)

Selectively used and only accessible to wealthy individuals and institutional investors

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

2

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

Private equity infrastructure Private equity real estate Private debt funds Other alternative funds

Overview of alternative investments

Figure 2: The investment cycle

• • • • • •

Personal savings Retirement plans Inheritance Investment income Company earnings Taxes



...can be saved

Savings...

• •

• •

• • • •

…can be invested with managers...

Individuals Companies Non-profit Governments

• •

…which generates excess cash...



• • • • • •

• • • •



Start companies Acquire companies Invest in companies Invest in securities Build tangible assets

Provide debt Underwrite IPOs Advise on acquisitions Support trading



…to invest in securities and assets...

…who use investment banks...

…in stocks, bonds, or tangible assets

…in alternative investments...

• • • •

• •

Cash Bank accounts Money market funds

Retirement accounts Pension funds Foundations Asset managers Treasuries

Companies Governments Real estate Infrastructure Natural resources

Venture capital Private equity buyouts Hedge funds Other (private debt, infrastructure, etc.)

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

Figure 3: Expected investment attributes for core alternative investment asset classes

VC Venture capital PE Private equity buyouts HF Hedge funds

Implications for:

Very low

VC

Description

Target returns1

Produces net returns to investors

Risk

Variance in returns and risk of losing capital

Correlation with other assets 2

Correlation with other assets (lower is better)

Inflation-linked

The asset typically adjusts for inflation

Liquidity

Ability to easily sell the asset when needed

Scalability 3

Ability to deploy large sums of capital

Very high

PE

HF

Performance

Investment attributes

1 Over

a 10yr horizon; Very high returns = >20%, high = 10-20%, moderate = 5-10%, low = 0-5%, very low = 0% Correlation with equity markets; Very high = 80-100%, high = 60-79%, moderate = 40-59%, low = 20-39%, very low = 0-19% 3 The ability of an LP to deploy large amounts of capital efficiently with fund managers and/or in co-investments

2

Source: Cambridge Associates, Hedge Fund Research, RREEF, JPMorgan, Coller Capital, Preqin

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

3

A brief history of alternative investment

2. A brief history of alternative investment

2.1. Laying the foundations for alternative investments

Private investors, largely in the form of wealthy individuals, have deployed capital in companies since before the Industrial Revolution. However, it was not until the mid to late 20th century that today’s alternative investment industry began to take shape in the United States (Figure 4). The industry has since grown from a handful of firms in the US managing a few billion dollars to thousands of firms spread across the world that now manage more than $7 trillion on behalf of investors. The key drivers behind this growth have been regulatory changes and technological innovation in the US and global market events.

2.1.1. Regulatory changes Three laws supported the birth and initial growth of the alternatives industry and two additional laws enabled the industry to scale up dramatically in the 2000s. 1. US Small Business Investment Act of 1958: The law supported private investment in small businesses and innovation. It legally enabled the creation of venture capital and private equity buyout fund structures and allowed them to use leverage. Alternative investors found the legal structures particularly attractive, as fund profits could typically be treated and taxed at lower capital gains rates and not as income, which is usually taxed at higher rates.

Figure 4: Key moments in the history of alternative investments Type of Event

Regulation

Technology

1958: US Small Business Investment Act of 1958 Enables the creation of VC and PE fund structures 1972: Kenbak-1 released First personal computer heralds the computing era 1973: Black–Scholes formula published Enabled the pricing of derivatives 1978: Update to Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 Allows pension funds to invest in private funds

192060s

1970s

1981: Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981 Made equity investments more attractive (vs debt) 1989: Savings and loan scandal + Drexel Burnham collapsed Junk bond market collapsest 1999: Financial Modernization Bill (Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act) Enables the rise of large investment banks in the US

1980s

2008: Global financial crisis Start of a global recession

2000spresent

1972: Sequoia Capital founded Leading venture capital firm 1972: Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers founded Leading venture capital firm 1975: Bridgewater founded Leading hedge fund 1976: KKR founded Leading private equity buyout firm 1985: Blackstone founded Leading private equity buyout firm 1987: Carlyle founded Leading private equity buyout firm 1987: KKR takes over RJR Nabisco Seminal private equity buyout deal 1998: Long-Term Capital implodes Threatens stability of financial system 2000s: Rise of sovereign wealth funds Expedites the rise of institutionalization 2007: Blackstone IPO First major IPO of a PE firm

2010s: New financial regulations Reshapes the financial and investment industries 1 The firms referenced here are illustrative examples. Only space constraints prevent us from mentioning the many other outstanding firms that played important roles throughout the history of alternative investments.

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries 4

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

Firm event1

1926: Graham-Newman partnership founded First hedge fund 1946: American Research and Development Corporation First venture capital fund 1962: Investors Overseas Services (IOS) IOS launches first fund of funds

1990s

2000: Gaussian copula function published Enables the rise of structured products (CDO/CLO/CDS) 2000: Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000 Enables the growth of derivatives

Market event

A brief history of alternative investment

2. US Department of Labor update (1978) to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA): This update lifted an earlier restriction placed on pension funds from investing in privately held securities, thereby enabling them to invest in alternative investments.

Box 1: Potential impact of new financial regulations

3. Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981: The law reduced capital gains taxes, which increased the attractiveness of equity investments relative to debt. As a result, institutional investors, such as pension funds, increased their allocation to alternative investments. 4. Financial Services Modernization Bill (Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act) of 1999: The law effectively repealed the U.S. Banking Act of 1933 (Glass-Steagall Act) and enabled the creation of large universal banks in the US, whose activities supported the dramatic increase in the scale of private equity buyouts and hedge funds in particular.

Compensation limits

Deposit and reporting requirements

Brokerage fee limits

Trading tax

Proprietary trading / private equity limits

Central clearing

Liquidity requirement

Collateral requirements

Regulatory reform

Thus, alternative investors will likely be affected by the new regulations, even though many of the laws target banks or other actors in the traditional financial system. Potential effects include a reduction in market liquidity, financial innovation, access to capital, and returns to investors and an increase in costs for existing firms and barriers to entry for new firms (Figure7). For an in-depth review of the charts below, the new regulations, and how they may shape the future of the industry, readers can refer to a forthcoming World Economic Forum report, Alternative Investments 2020: Regulatory Reform and Alternative Investments.

Leverage limits

Figure 5: Overview of financial reforms in the United States and Europe by area

Legislative region

5. Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000: This law clarified that most types of over-the-counter derivatives, which are not traded on exchanges, would not be subject to government oversight. The law enabled the growth of derivatives, used extensively by hedge funds, to grow unchecked by any regulatory constraints.

The future of alternative investments will likely continue to be influenced by regulatory changes. Following the financial crisis, regulators in the United States and Europe overhauled regulations governing many highly technical aspects of the global financial system, with the goal of preventing a similar crisis from occurring again (Figure 5). Regulations that target one type of financial actor can have ramifications for many other seemingly unrelated ones within the financial ecosystem, given the complex set of interdependencies amongst different parts of the system (Figure 6).

Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, (Dodd-Frank) § 619 (12 U.S.C. § 1851) of the Dodd-Frank Act (Volcker Rule) Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) Third Basel Accord/Capital Requirements Directive (Basel III/CRD IV) Undertakings For The Collective Investment of Transferable Securities V (UCITS V) Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD) Solvency II Directive (Solvency II) Markets in Financial Instruments Directive II (MIFID II) European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR) Financial Transaction Tax (FTT) Packaged Retail Investment Products (PRIPS) International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) Retail Distribution Review (RDR) Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

Areas affected

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

5

A brief history of alternative investment

Venture capital

Private equity

Hedge funds

High-net worth / Retail investors

Pension funds

Insurance companies

Asset managers

Banks

Regulatory reform

Legislative region

Figure 6: Implications of regulatory changes for different actors

Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, (Dodd-Frank) § 619 (12 U.S.C. § 1851) of the Dodd-Frank Act (Volcker Rule) Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) Third Basel Accord/Capital Requirements Directive (Basel III/CRD IV) Undertakings For The Collective Investment of Transferable Securities V (UCITS V) Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD) Solvency II Directive (Solvency II) Markets in Financial Instruments Directive II (MIFID II) European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR) Financial Transaction Tax (FTT) Packaged Retail Investment Products (PRIPS) International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) Retail Distribution Review (RDR) Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

6

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

Primary target

Also affected

A brief history of alternative investment

Figure 7: Impact of new financial regulations on alternative investment actors Low

Implications for:

Capital markets

Investment and retirement needs

High potential impact

VC

Description

Market liquidity

The potential for the reform process to profoundly decrease trading volumes

Financial markets innovation

The potential for any limitation on innovation to feed back into the alternative investment industry

Human talent

The number and quality of people moving from traditional financial firms may fall.

Cost

New regulations are imposing major costs on firms

Consolidation & barriers to entry

Cost and regulatory complexity will form new barriers to entry

Innovation

The combined effects on talent, cost and barriers to entry may stifle innovation

Access to capital

Investors who could benefit from alternative investments may be denied access

Returns to investors

The cumulative impact of these challenges is likely to be a fall in returns to investors

PE

HF

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

2.1.2. Technological change

2.2. Market events

The technology revolution, in part funded by alternative investors (venture capital), and innovative ideas by academics also played a pivotal role in the history of alternative investments. The dramatic increase in computing power transformed financial markets and made it possible to record, track, move, store, and analyse previously unmanageable and unthinkable amounts of data. In addition, academic innovations in the form of the Nobel Prize winning Black-Scholes options pricing formula (1973) and the application of the Gaussian copula theorems to financial instruments (2000) enabled investors to quickly and easily price complex financial products such as derivatives1 and structured securities, which supported their rapid growth and increased liquidity in markets overall.2, 3 Hedge funds benefited immensely from these changes, as their business models often rely on the large and liquid markets and/or accessing, analysing, and valuing large amounts of data or complex financial instruments.

Building upon the aforementioned foundations, the alternative investment industry has grown with each passing decade. —— 1980s: The economic boom and growth of the high yield (junk bond) market proved critical to the growth of private equity buyouts, as firms used the debt to acquire much larger companies than they would have been able to otherwise. —— 1990s: Strong market returns, in large part driven by venture capital backed companies, generated large amounts of private wealth, which served to fuel investments in hedge funds. —— 2000s: Investments in venture capital fell significantly following the dotcom crash. However, the credit driven economic resurgence allowed private equity buyouts and hedge funds to scale up to new heights. ——2010s: Alternative investments performed well relative to traditional investments during and after the financial crisis. The result was an increase in demand for alternative investments, which enabled the growth of non-core alternative investments.

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

7

A brief history of alternative investment

Today, the alternative investment industry is truly global in both breadth and depth. More than 10,000 firms (Figure 8) mange some $7 trillion in assets under management (Figure 9). The capital is invested across the globe in companies at every stage of development and in every imaginable industry sector.

The industry has expanded beyond the core and now includes a range of additional asset classes. Some are specific to alternatives, such as secondary funds, which seek to acquire stakes in existing alternative funds, while others utilize private equity style fund structures and investment techniques to target traditional asset classes such as real estate, infrastructure, or private debt.

Figure 8: Growth of core alternative asset classes4 Total number of hedge funds, private equity buyout, and venture capital firms 1,600

9,000

1,400

8,000

1,200

7,000 6,000

1,000

5,000

800

4,000 600

3,000

400

2,000

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

1998

1997

1996

1995

1994

1993

_ 1992

_ 1991

1,000

1990

200

Venture capital Private equity buyouts

Hedge funds

Source: Preqin, HFR

Figure 9: Growth in assets under management by asset class5 Total alternative assets under management, $ billlions 8,000 7,000 6,000 5,000 4,000 3,000 2,000

Other Private equity infrastructure Private equity real estate Venture capital Private equity buyouts Hedge funds

1,000

Source: Preqin,Hedge Fund Research

8

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

2014 H1

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

_

Investing in alternative investments

3. Investing in alternative investments 3.1. Investment structure The legal structures used by alternative investment funds differ significantly from most traditional fund arrangements (mutual funds in the US, unit trusts in the United Kingdom, and UCITS funds in Europe), even though both entail a fund investing on behalf of an investor. This results in different and unique fee structures, investment lifespans, degrees of freedom with regard to the investment mandate, cash flow patterns, liquidity and investor constraints, and performance metrics. Figure 10 provides an overview of the key differences between alternative investment funds and traditional funds, such as mutual funds.

3.1.1. Investor constraints Most governments only permit wealthy individuals and institutional investors (such as pension funds, sovereign wealth funds, and endowments and foundations) to invest in alternative investments. The belief is that such investors are better able to understand and manage the complex, often high risk, and illiquid nature of alternative investments.

3.1.2. Investment lifespan Most types of alternative investments utilize closed-end fund structures that have a fixed lifespan (typically 10-15 years). All of the value of the investment is returned to investors within this timeframe, who must then identify new investment opportunities to reinvest the capital in. Hedge funds are a noteworthy exception, as they usually offer open ended funds, which are similar in style to traditional fund structures, in that the capital is automatically reinvested with the fund unless the investor requests that the capital be returned to them.

3.1.3. Investment mandate The legal structure that alternative investment funds use is quite flexible relative to traditional funds. Alternative investors usually have broad investment mandates, which allows them to employ a diverse range of strategies and pursue a wide range of investments. Moreover, they are not constrained by legal barriers imposed on traditional funds that limit their ability to use debt (leverage), short sell securities, invest in illiquid securities, or use derivatives when seeking to execute on their strategies.

Figure 10: Comparison of investment attributes for alternative vs traditional fund structures

Traditional investments

Alternative investments Closed-end funds

Types of investments

Fee structures

Asset classes

Investment lifespan

1 There

Private equity buyouts Private equity real estate • Private equity infrastructure • Distressed debt

Venture capital Secondary • Private debt









Open-end funds Hedge funds



Open-end funds Public stocks Government and corporate bonds • Cash • •

Management fees Performance fees + hurdle rate



Management fees



Management fees Performance fees + hurdle rate







Usually 10-12 years



Microseconds to 18 months



Days to years

Flexible investment scope Can be illiquid • Can use debt and derivatives



Narrowly defined scope Liquid and long only securities1 • Limited ability to use debt



Flexible investment scope Often illiquid • Can use debt and derivatives





Investment scope







Cash flow patterns



Unpredictable when cash will be invested or returned to an investor





Liquidity constraints



Staggered withdrawals (months), with a delay



Investor constraints



Performance metrics

Relatively predictable when cash will be invested/returned

No withdrawals permitted Secondary sales are permitted



Only wealthy individuals Institutional investors



• •

Money weighted (internal rate of return)







Only wealthy individuals Institutional investors

Money weighted (internal rate of return)

Relatively predictable when cash will be invested/returned Ability to withdraw all capital in a short period (days)



Any individual Institutional investors



Time weighted return



are some exceptions to this long only means that funds do not short securities

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

9

Investing in alternative investments

3.1.4. Cash flow patterns

3.1.6. Fee structures

Alternative investments have more unpredictability in the size and timing of cash flows than that of traditional funds. Cash invested in a traditional stock or bond fund is usually fully invested within one business day. In contrast, most alternative investment funds accept cash commitments from investors, but no cash is transferred to the fund until it needs the cash to make an investment. There can be a lengthy delay (months to years) between when the capital is committed and when it is invested. Importantly, the full amount of capital committed will be invested (a “capital call”) over a period of time (often years). The return of capital (a “distribution”) to an investor is equally unpredictable, since fund managers cannot predict the timing or price of an asset in advance. The resulting cash flow pattern is known as a j-curve, which is illustrated in Figure 11.

Alternative investment funds have two primary fees: management fees and performance fees. Management fees are similar in nature to those charged by traditional investment products, but performance fees are unique, as traditional funds are not typically permitted to charge performance fees.The most important fee related factors are:

3.1.5. Liquidity constraints Alternative investment funds are much more illiquid than traditional funds. Most use closed-end fund structures that do not permit investors to withdraw their capital from the fund due to the illiquid nature of the investments. However, investors can sell their stake to a secondary fund, which specializes in such transactions. In contrast, open-ended fund structures allow investors to request that their capital be returned to them at any time. In traditional mutual funds, fund managers are required to return the capital within a matter of days. Hedge funds often use open-ended structures as well, but they do not have the same requirement to quickly return the capital to investors. Rather, investors must submit requests 1-12 months in advance and on a staggered basis. The delay reflects the fact that the underlying investments are sometimes illiquid and cannot be sold quickly without incurring large losses. Figure 11: Illustration of cash in/outflows for closed-end fund structures Illustration of closed-end fund cash flows 50

100

40

80

30

60 40

20

20

10

0

0

-20

-10

-40

-20

-60

-30

-80

-40

-100

0

1

2

3

4

5

6

Capital calls (cash from investor to fund) Distributions (cash returned to investor)

7

8

9

10

Cumulative (cash returned to investor)

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

10

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

—— Management fee: Fund managers usually receive fees of 1-2% of raised or invested capital per annum. Such fees are intended to cover the costs of operating the fund. Fees in excess of these costs are retained by the firm that manages the fund, which can create an incentive to raise large funds. —— Performance fees (also known as carry): Fund managers typically receive 20% of net profits generated by the fund over its lifespan, once the hurdle rate (discussed below) has been met. Sharing in the profits serves to align the interests of the fund manager and the underlying investor. —— Hurdle rate (also known as a high watermark or preferred rate of return): Most fund agreements stipulate a hurdle rate of 7-8%. Fund managers do not receive performance fees until they meet the hurdle rate. As the hurdle rate is calculated over the whole life of a fund, sub-par returns in one year need to be matched with outsized returns in following years. This incentivizes fund managers to aim for high absolute returns and take a long-term view.

3.1.7. Performance metrics Alternative investors use different performance metrics than those used by traditional funds. The difference reflects the fact that the former have control over the timing of an investment, but traditional managers do not (the investor determines this). Traditional funds measure returns using the time weighted method, which ignores how much cash was invested and simply computes returns based on the value of a security at two points in time. In contrast, alternative investors use the money weighted return method (also known as an internal rate of return), which weights returns based on the size of the cash inflows and outflows over time. In turn, alternative investment funds are typically measured by the rate of return they are able to generate over a period of time and a cash flow multiple, which compares how much cash was returned to an investor relative to how much they started with. Figure 12 provides an example of how these two methods can produce different returns.

Investing in alternative investments

Figure 12: Comparison of money vs time weighted returns Starting capital

Period

Ending capital

Quarter 0



100

Quarter 1

100

105

Quarter 2

155

171

Quarter 3

146

116

Quarter 4

216

249

Cash to investor

Annual

Cash from investor



Period return

n/a

100 50

25 100 249

274

16.2%

5%

25.1%

10%

23.6%

-20%

35.1%

15%

250

6.3%



3.9%

Time weighted

= [(1+5%)*(1+10%)*(1-20%)*(1+15%)]-1 =

Money weighted

= (5%*16%)+(10%*25%)+(-20%*24%)+(15%*35%) =

Cash flow multiple = (274/250) =

% of capital invested





1.1x%

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

Figure 13: Investment life cycle for different types of alternative investors Private equity

Raising capital

Searching for investments

Investment life cycle

Fund life cycle

Exiting an investment

Qualitative (illiquid)

Open-ended funds Fund raising is an on-going concern for all fund types

Open ended funds Fund raising is an on-going concern for all fund types

Closed funds Fund raising lasts 6-18 months



Closed-end funds Fund raising lasts 6-18 months

















Weeks to years Firms analyse a company







Weeks to years Firms analyse a company

• •

Months Firms usually take a controlling stake in companies

• •

Months Firms partner with other VCs to provide capital to companies

• •

• •

3-7 years Own and manage entire companies

• •

5-7 years Own and advise on partially owned companies

• •

• •

Months Exit deal through IPO, trade sale 2 or secondary sale 2

• •

LPs receive net returns after each company is sold





Returning or reinvesting captial

Qualitative (liquid)





Owning an asset

Quantitative •



Deploying capital

Hedge funds1

Venture capital

Closed funds Fund raising lasts 6-18 months

Milliseconds to minutes • Days to months • Weeks to months Algorithms identify • Firms review individual • Firms review individual opportunities or groups of securities companies Milliseconds to minutes • Hours to days Shares are acquired • Acquire securities on on exchanges exchanges or private exchanges Milliseconds to weeks Own securities

• •

1-12 months Own securities

Weeks to months Acquire securities on exchanges or private exchange • •

• •

Months • Milliseconds to minutes Exit deal through IPO, • Sell security on an trade sale 2 electronic exchange or secondary sale 2

• •

Hours to days Sell security on an exchange or to a private party

• •

LPs receive net returns after each company is sold

• •

Days to months LPs receive cash with a delay (30-90 days) after requesting a withdrawal

• •

Days to weeks LPs receive cash with a delay (30-90 days) after requesting a withdrawal • •

6-18 months Own securities

Weeks to months Sell security on an exchange or to a private party Days to months LPs receive cash with a delay (30-90 days) after requesting a withdrawal

1 The

liquidity profile of hedge funds varies widely, depending on the nature of the investment strategy sales is the sale of a company to a corporation; secondary sale is the sale of a company to an alternative investment fund that specializes in purchasing companies from private equity firms

2 Trade 3 The

nature of the strategy will determine the liquidity of the investment, as well as how long it will take a fund to fulfill a redemption request

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

11

Investing in alternative investments

3.2. Investment life cycle

3.2.4. Owning an asset

The investment life cycle for most types of alternative investments is usually much longer and involved than that of a traditional investment. In most cases, the full cycle will last nearly a decade and involve many different parts of the financial system. The steps and the order they are taken in are shared by all alternative investments, but there is tremendous variance between how each asset class executes each step and how long each step can take. Figure 13 provides an overview of these differences, which will be discussed in greater detail in this next section.

Depending on the nature of the investment, hedge funds may hold an investment for mere seconds, weeks or months, or even more than a year in the case of activist hedge funds that seek to influence the strategy or operations of a target investment. Most of the remaining asset classes usually retain an investment for three to seven years. Moreover, most of these funds (and activist hedge funds) will invest significant time and resources in seeking to improve the operations and management of the companies they own in an attempt to generate strong returns.

3.2.1. Raising capital

3.2.5. Exiting an investment

Most alternative investment funds are closed in nature and engage in a fund raising period prior to closing the fund to new commitments. During this window, which usually lasts 6-18 months, funds receive commitments from investors, but do not begin to invest the committed capital. Hedge funds are an exception, since their open-ended fund structure allows them to raise and invest the capital at any time.

Exiting an investment can be as short as microseconds or last as long as a year. Hedge funds can take as little as microseconds to days to sell securities on public exchanges. This is because many focus on liquid investments. Funds that are selling an entire company/asset, a large stake in a company/asset to a company (trade sale), another investment fund (secondary sale), or listing it on a public exchange (IPO), can expect an exit process of around three to twelve months.

3.2.2. Searching for investments The process of identifying companies, securities, or assets to invest in varies widely by asset class. Private equity buyout and venture capital firms and certain types of hedge funds, will devote weeks or months to researching, reviewing, and conducting due diligence on investment opportunities before a single specific target is identified. The process itself is similar for hedge funds that focus on investing in liquid securities, though the timeframe may be as short as microseconds for those that use computer algorithm driven quantitative techniques or days or weeks for those that rely on analysis by investment professionals.

3.2.3. Deploying capital The time it takes to deploy capital in an investment also varies significantly across different asset classes. For hedge funds that invest in liquid securities traded on public exchanges, the process could be as short as microseconds or last as long as days if the fund seeks to purchase a meaningful stake in a company (often 5 to 10% of a specific security). At the other end of the spectrum are the remaining alternative asset classes that seek to acquire entire companies or large positions in a specific company or security either by themselves or in partnership with other investors. Such deals can last months and ultimately the fund may fail to close the deal.

12

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

3.2.6. Reinvesting or returning capital What happens to the proceeds of an investment sale depend on how the fund is structured. If the fund is open ended, as is typically the case with hedge funds, the capital will remain with the fund manager to invest until the investor submits a request to withdraw capital from the fund. In contrast, closed end funds return the capital, minus any applicable fees, to investors after each sale. An investor usually has the option to recommit the capital to the fund manager, but can only do so by committing it to a new fund that is in the process of raising capital.

Overview of different types of alternative investments

4. Overview of different types of alternative investments The industry encompasses a diverse range of asset classes, but three in particular are worth exploring in greater detail: hedge funds, private equity buyouts, and venture capital.

4.1. Hedge funds

strategies in an attempt to generate their target returns (Figure 14). Depending on the strategy employed, they may invest in different parts of the capital structure (equity, different levels of debt) or purchase (or short) a range of securities (stocks, bonds, loans, structured products, derivatives, commodities, currencies, etc.) to meet their investment objectives. Hedge funds usually use a mix of equity from investors and borrowed funds to acquire securities, with the amount of debt used varying widely. The strategy employed influences the holding period, which can be as short as microseconds or longer than a year.

4.1.1. Overview Hedge funds manage more than $3 trillion (40% of all alternative capital), which makes them a large and important part of the industry. Geographically, the industry is highly concentrated. Most of the capital is managed in the US (70%) and Europe (21%), with managers in the New York area (50%) and London (18%) overseeing two-thirds of all global capital.6, 7 Still, hedge funds make investments across the globe and in all sectors of the economy. Overall, there are more than 8,000 hedge funds,8 with the top 25 managing 29%9, 10 of all assets under management.

4.1.2. Business model Hedge funds usually acquire minority stakes in securities with the goal of generating outperformance for a given level of risk, no matter the economic environment. Unlike venture capital and private equity buyouts, hedge funds employ a wide variety of

4.1.3. Investment attributes Investors continue to allocate more capital to hedge funds for a number of reasons. According to a recent survey,11 the number one objective for institutional investors investing in hedge funds is for funds to produce returns that are uncorrelated to equity. The degree to which hedge funds are able to meet this objective varies widely, with different strategies and funds producing correlations with traditional stocks ranging from 20-35% for futures, fixed arbitrage and global macro funds, to 70-80% for long/short or emerging equity funds.12 Investors also value the fact that the reduced correlation of hedge funds with equity markets diversified their investment portfolio and reduces the volatility in it.13 Finally, the ability to generate risk-adjusted absolute returns in any market is prized by investors.14

Figure 14: Overview of hedge fund strategies Strategy

Sub-strategy

Characteristics

Long-short equity



Market neutral (discretionary) Short bias • Long bias • Variable bias • Sector player









Activist Credit long/short • Distressed/restructuring • Merger arbitrage • Special situations • Multi-strategy (ED)







Event driven

Long and short positions in equities/equities-related security Analysis of company fundamentals and with some technical analysis • Variable market exposure to express market views • Often broken down by geographical regions

Company-specific events and special situations Mergers, takeovers, bankruptcies, spinoffs, restructurings • Distressed securities and high yield • Invests across the entire capital structure

Relative value



Asset backed Convertible bond arbitrage • Credit arbitrage • Fixed income arbitrage • Market neutral (systematic equity) • Volatility









Global macro



Diversified global macro Commodity • Currency









Trend following Short-term trading • Fundamental trading • Multi-strategy (CTA)







CTAs1

1 Includes

managed futures, commodity traded advisers

Takes advantage of the convergence of prices between two assets Takes long and short exposures in proportionate amounts • Seeks to have no to low correlation with the markets • Instruments include all types of bonds, swaps, and equities

Views on macro-economic themes Takes positions in equities, rates, currencies, commodities

Trades commodity and financial derivatives, mainly futures Systematic traders rely on mathematically-derived, computer generated signals to capture market trends • Discretionary traders also rely on fundamental analysis, decisions taken by the managers

Source: LGT Capital Partners, World Economic Forum Investors Industries

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

13

Overview of different types of alternative investments

4.2. Private equity buyouts 4.2.1. Overview Private equity buyout firms have been a large and high profile part of alternative investing since the 1980s. The asset class is the second largest segment within alternative investing, with private equity buyout firms managing $1.4 trillion. Firms invest in dozens of countries across the globe, though companies in the US (50%) and Europe (26%) receive a disproportionate share of the capital.15 They invest across a wide range of industries and in companies ranging from small businesses to Fortune 500 companies worth billions. Globally, there are approximately 1,000 firms, with the 25 largest managing 41% of the total assets under management.16

4.2.2. Business model Most private equity buyout firms focus on the private acquisition, ownership, and eventual sale of equity stakes in existing businesses. They usually acquire the entire company or at least a controlling stake, though some firms specialize in making minority investments in companies. Debt, often in the form of leveraged loans of high yield bonds, usually accounts for 50-70% of the Figure 15: Typical holding period for global buyout deals19 Percentage of global private equity buyout-backed investments exited (average length of time investments were held in the fund portfolio)

purchase price.17, 18 After acquiring a company, firms will often seek to upgrade management and governance, improve the operations, and grow the business for a period of 3-6 years (see Figure 15). It will then seek to sell the business to a company, another alternative investment fund, or list it on a public exchange (Figure 16).

4.2.3. Investment attributes Investors find private equity buyouts attractive for a number of reasons. First, they expect relatively high returns. Some 37% expect private equity funds to outperform public equity by +4.1% and another 49% expect it to outperform by +2.1-4.0%.22 Historically, this has been true, with global private equity buyout returns yielding an average of 18.8% per year from 1986 to 2002 and 11.9% from 2003 to 2012.23 Second, the asset class tends to be illiquid and long-term,24, 25, 26 which provides an opportunity to capture return premia associated with each. Third, private equity returns offer a partial inflation hedge, as the revenues of the companies they invest in are linked to the rate of inflation.27, 28 Fourth, historically investors had valued the fact that private equity buyout returns were significantly uncorrelated with those of other asset classes, but this diversification benefit has eroded significantly as it has grown.29

66 2013 13 22

60

66

58

2012 12 23

2014 12 29

2010 12 38

2009 23

2008 30

2007 28

2006 27

0%

2005 30

2004 23

20%

2011 13 30

42

39

36

32

28

40%

34

50

35

38

41

60%

42

41

80%

31

100%

> 5 years 3-5 years < 3 years Source: Preqin

Figure 16: Distribution of exits for global private equity buyout deals by type20, 21 Percentage of the number of deals

17

18 27

11 31

27

11

11

28

18 31

16

18 31

17

17

80%

21

19

90%

30

11

7

100%

32

35

27

60%

26

29

70%

50% 40% 30%

1

14

54

47

53

51

51

63

72

57

61

58

57

56

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

2013

0%

54

10%

2001

20%

EY, EY Global IPO Trends, 2014. 2 EY, Global IPO trends 2011: Private equity, 2011. Source: Ernst & Young

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

IPO Secondary Trade sale

Overview of different types of alternative investments

4.3. Venture capital

4.3.2. Business model

4.3.1. Overview

Venture capital firms focus on investing equity in privately owned start-up companies, particularly those that are developing innovative new solutions, products, and processes and have the potential to grow rapidly.33, 34 Given the high failure rate of start-up companies, the business model is predicated on the hope that a few investments will deliver exceptionally high returns (>10x invested capital) in order to offset for the many other investments where some or all of the equity invested is lost. Most investments range from less than $1 million for a seed stage deal to $10 million for a late stage deal. Venture capital firms expect the capital to be invested for 3-7 years, depending on which life stage of the company they invest at, before they seek to sell the investment to a company (known as a trade sale) or list it for an IPO on an exchange (Figure 18).

Venture capital is the best known alternative asset class and can trace its history back to 1946. Today, venture capital firms manage more than $400 billion in assets under management.30 Geographically, investments and firms are highly concentrated in a handful of countries, with the US alone attracting nearly 70% of global investments (Figure 17). Investments are concentrated in industries and sub-sectors that rely on the development of new technologies, with information technology, biotechnology, internet related media and consumer, and energy companies receiving a large share of all annual investments. Most firms specialize in just one or two life stages of a company, with most focusing on either seed and early stage businesses or late and expansion stage companies. There are nearly 1,500 venture capital firms globally, with the top 25 firms managing 25% of the global assets under management.32 Figure 17: Top countries for total venture capital

4.3.3. Investment attributes Investors are primarily attracted to venture capital for the prospect of receiving outsized returns relative to traditional public equity. The expectation of high returns is justified due to the high level of risk associated with investing in young companies with unproven products, business models, or management teams (or all three), with the hope of profiting from the creation of the next Google, Facebook, or Uber. Such investments are high risk, illiquid, and long-tenured. Historically, the asset class as a whole was able to deliver on these expectations, with returns averaging as high as 100% during the dotcom boom.37 However, following the dotcom crash, returns hovered around 0% for nearly a decade and only recently returned to the 15-30% range in the late 2000s.38

invested31

Share of total venture capital invested 2006-2013, $ billions India 9.9

Israel 13.1

Canada 7.1 China 33.05

Europe 55.4

US 254.6

Source: Ernst & Young

Figure 18: Distribution of exits for US venture capital deals by type35, 36

80%

20

17

9

9

11

3

2 16

12

17

90%

12

7

100%

6

Percentage of the number of exits

70% 60% 50% 40% 30%

93

83

88

88

84

98

97

89

91

91

83

80

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

2013

2014

0%

94

10%

2002

20% IPO Trade sale

Source: NVCA

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

15

Overview of different types of alternative investments

4.4. Other types of alternative investments

4.4.2. Business model

4.4.1. Overview

Non-core alternative investors use a variety of business models, but most use closed-end fund structures and seek to exit an investment through a trade or secondary sale after holding it for 3-7 years.

The attractiveness and success of the alternative investment structure has led investors to apply it to a range of investments beyond the core asset classes described above. Some asset classes are unique to alternative investing. Examples of this include secondary funds and growth equity funds. Other funds apply the alternative fund structure to traditional investments. Examples of this include private equity infrastructure funds, private equity real estate funds, and private debt funds (including mezzanine, distressed debt, direct lending). Collectively, non-core alternative investment funds manage $2.07 trillion, with four asset classes accounting for 85% of this (Figure 19).39 The geographic focus varies by asset class, but the majority of capital is invested in developed countries. These funds invest in all industries of the global economy and in every part of the capital structure. The size of the target company or security also varies widely, from growth stage companies to multi-billion dollar real estate portfolios or infrastructure projects. There are well over 1,000 non-core funds and each asset class has a diversity of funds of varying sizes and specialties. Figure 19: Share of non-core alternative investment classes40 Other alternative investment classes (share of other assets under management as of 2014, H1)1 100% = $2.07 billion

15% 36%

12% 14%

Private equity real estate Private debt Private equity infrastructure Growth Other

Private equity real estate and private equity infrastructure use the private equity buyout model. They acquire controlling equity stakes in assets, use a large amount of debt as part of the deal structure, and often seek to increase the value of the asset by investing in improvements, upgrades, cost reduction measures, or growth initiatives. Similarly, growth equity is akin to very late stage venture capital, as firms seek to acquire minority stakes in small companies with strong growth prospects. The final primary non-core area is that of private debt funds, which are comprised of mezzanine, distressed debt, and direct lending funds. These funds either extend credit directly to companies or acquire debt securities issued by a company. The fund manager can be a relatively passive owner of a portfolio of such securities or actively engaged in advising on the business strategy and operations of the underlying company itself.

4.4.3. Investment attributes Investment attributes vary widely for non-core asset classes, but investors value several in particular. They value the inflation linked and relatively non-correlated returns that investments in real estate and infrastructure generate, as well the ability to efficiently deploy large sums of capital in such deals. The ability to generate relatively high returns when investing in growth funds is also prized by many investors.

Box 2: Alternative investment, private debt funds and shadow lending

23%

1 Other alternative investment classes excludes private equity buyouts, hedge funds, and venture capital

Source: Preqin

Alternative investors have recently begun to expand into providing debt (loans or bonds) to businesses, an area traditionally dominated by banks. The disintermediation process is part of a broader global trend known as shadow banking or shadow lending, whereby non-bank actors seek to provide credit to companies. The growth in alternative investment related shadow lending has been dramatic and the implications for investors, regulators, and the system are still unknown. The trend is driven by three factors. First, the post-crisis financial regulatory reforms have led banks to reduce their lending activities, particularly to small and medium sized businesses. Second, the demand for credit from businesses has not fallen to the same degree, leading to unmet demand. Third, the demand by institutional investors for debt that yields more than government debt remains robust. Overall, the non-bank financial actors including alternative investors, are expected to replace banks in providing a projected $3 trillion of lending by 2018 (Figure 20).

16

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

Overview of different types of alternative investments

The market for direct lending includes an array of core and noncore alternative investors (Figure 21). Leading alternative investors, such as the Blackstone Group, Apollo Global Management, the Carlyle Group, Pine River, and BlueCrest Capital, have all expanded their product offerings to include private debt funds. They are joined by a number of specialized new firms.

Figure 20: Projected value of bank disintermediation in 2018 ($ billions)41 Projected value of bank disintermediation in 2018, $ billions China

1,451 648

US EU+UK

248

India

237 166

Australia

253

Rest of the world –

200

400

600

800

1,000

1,200

1,400

1,600

Source: S&P

Alternative investors have long invested in certain types of debt, but the scope of the market broadened in recent years. Historically, the private debt market consisted of specialized funds that provided mezzanine debt, which sits between equity and secured/ senior debt in the capital structure, or distressed debt, which is owed by companies near bankruptcy. Following the financial crisis, a third type of fund emerged. Known as direct lending funds, these funds extend credit directly to businesses or acquire debt issued by banks with the express purpose of selling it to investors (in the past it would have been held by the bank).

The strong demand by institutional investors has enabled these funds to expand their size rapidly. Collectively, some 531 private equity style debt funds have been raised since 2009.42 Overall, total assets under management have doubled since the financial crisis, from $213 billion in assets under management in 2007 to $465 billion by June 2014,43 with 25% of that coming from direct lending funds. Hedge funds have also been an important source of debt capital and now manage more than $600 billion of debt focused funds.44 The risks associated with shadow lending are not yet well known. Regulators in the US, United Kingdom, and Europe have expressed their concern that they could undermine the broader financial system if they take on too much leverage, mismanage risk, or experience liquidity crises stemming from a mismatch in what they borrow (short-term and liquid debt) and what they lend (long-term and illiquid). They have responded by studying the issue closely and examining whether shadow lenders should be subject to some or all of the strict regulations that govern lending by traditional banks. While the universe of shadow lending is vast, it is worth noting that most alternative investment debt funds do not use extensive amounts of additional debt in order to extend or acquire business loans.

Figure 21: Overview of key actors in the shadow lending system Traditional ecosystem

Traditional banks

Shadow lending

Alternative ecosystem

Securities brokers & dealers

Money market mutual funds

Private equity managed debt funds

Special purpose vehicle securitization

Nonbank lenders

Hedge fund managed credit funds

Finance companies

Asset backed commercial paper

Private debt funds

Private equity

Hedge funds

Venture capital

Other

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

17

Sources of capital

5. Sources of capital

5.1.1. Long-term investors

Sources of capital for the industry have evolved over time, simultaneously supporting the rise of alternative investment and leading to changes in the industry itself. The capital base has steadily shifted from small scale long-term investors (e.g. wealthy individuals) to the large institutional investors (e.g. pension funds) that provide most of the capital today. Below we discuss both the different sets of drivers, as well as a number of specific types of investors.

5.1. Investment drivers Three sets of drivers underpin investment demand for alternative investments, with each seeking a distinct set of attributes that alternatives can offer (Figure 22). Different classes of investors are usually aligned with one of these three groups. Figure 22: Primary drivers for investors in alternative investments Investment drivers

Examples of investors

Primary attraction to investors

High-net worth individuals • Foundations • Endowments • Sovereign wealth funds









Long-term

High returns • Illiquidity premium • Scalability (for SWFs)



National pension funds State/city pension funds • Teachers pension funds • Corporate pension funds

High returns Inflation-linked • Steady cash flow • Scalability









5.1.2. Liability driven investors Liability driven investors have moderately long investment horizons (10-15 years) and a need to pay out cash on an on-going basis in the short-term.45, 46 Pension funds, are the key investors in this category, as they need to generate returns over the lifetime of a beneficiary, as well as cash to payout to those in retirement. They are attracted to the prospect of high expected returns, the ability to deploy large amounts of capital efficiently, and the inflation-linked and cash flow generating attributes that alternatives can offer. Insurance companies would normally be included as well, but legal limitations on investing in alternatives leads them to behave more like diversification driven investors.

5.1.3. Diversification driven investors Diversification driven investors are seeking to diversify their portfolios. This set of investors includes asset managers, corporations, banks, insurance companies, and government agencies. These investors allocate to alternatives because it improves the overall returns and the risk return profile of their broader portfolio. Historically, these investors have had relatively and absolutely small allocations to alternative investment, though collectively they provide a meaningful share of capital to the industry.



Liability driven

Long-term investors have theoretically infinite horizons. They range in size from large sovereign wealth funds to high-net worth individuals, family offices, endowments, and foundations. Long-term investors are attracted by the above average returns that are often possible when investing in long-term and illiquid investments.

5.2. Providers of capital Banks • Asset managers • Insurance companies • Corporations







Diversification driven

Diversification • High returns • Inflation linked •

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

18

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

The pool of investors that allocates capital to alternative investments is vast and diverse, and encompasses both institutional and retail investors. The number of institutional investors alone that invest in alternatives exceeds 4,800,47 with the majority all allocating capital to at least two alternative asset classes.48 A wide range of investors dedicate capital to alternative assets (Figure 23), with a wide variance in allocations (Figure 25). However, over 70% of this capital come from only three types of institutional investor: pension funds, sovereign wealth funds, and endowments/foundations (Figure 24).

Sources of capital

Percentage of the number of investors1

Percentage of assets under management1

100%

100%

50%

24

24

0%

31

10%

14 23

20% 10% 0%

ts ds al pit ou fun uy ca b ge e r d y uit He ntu eq Ve te a v Pri

44

20%

30%

40

20

26

30%

40%

Other Financial institutions Fund of funds Wealthy individuals2 Pension funds Endowments and foundations

17

60%

25

40%

13

12

50%

19

8 17

70%

11

16

9

70% 60%

80%

18

15

80%

11

19

90%

6 6

12

90%

61

Figure 24: Breakdown of investors in core alternative investment asset classes by capital invested52, 53

11 2

Figure 23: Breakdown of investors in core alternative investment asset classes by number of investors49, 50, 51

ds un ef g d He

ts ou uy b y uit eq

te va Pri

Other Wealthy individuals2 Sovereign wealth funds Endowments and foundations Financial institutions Pension funds

1 Includes institutional investors that have invested in hedge funds or that have a preference for or previously invested in private equity or venture capital funds

1 Excludes fund of hedge funds, and fund of funds and asset managers for private equity firms

2 Includes

2 Includes

high-net worth investors, wealth management and family offices

Source: Preqin

high-net worth investors, wealth management and family offices

Source: Preqin

Figure 25: Average allocation to private equity buyout and hedge funds by select investor types54, 55 Average allocation as a percentage of total portfolio allocation 30% 25% 20% 15% 10%

es ffic ly o i m Fa

ns pla nt e wm do En

s on ati nd u Fo

2

3

8

6

7

4

11

6

18

12

19

13

0%

19

28

5% Private equity buyouts Hedge funds

r s ds ds cto nie un un se nds pa nf hf t e l o t m u i f a va n co ns we Pri nsio pe ce ign lic an e r pe b r u ve Pu Ins So

Source: Preqin

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

19

Sources of capital

5.2.1. Pension funds

5.2.4. Sovereign wealth funds

Pension funds are among the largest, most influential, and longest running investors in alternative investments. Pension funds, whether corporate or public, are liability driven investors that collectively manage more than $36 trillion,56 making them the single largest pool of institutional capital in the world. Their immense scale played a critical role in supporting the early rise of the industry in the 1980s. The ability of alternatives to consistently meet their unique investment needs over time has resulted in pension funds allocating increasingly large sums of capital to the industry, which is a key reason why alternative firms now manage trillions of dollars. Many of the largest and most sophisticated pension funds have sought to develop the capability to partner with alternative firms when investing or even to lead investment deals themselves. They have also played an important role in shaping the industry itself, particularly with regard to increasing the transparency of the industry and reducing the level of fees associated with investing in alternative investments.

Sovereign wealth funds are investment funds that are owned and operated on behalf of sovereign states. Most funds maintain a long-term investment focus that seeks to invest on behalf of the nation’s citizens. However, some are mandated to serve as shortterm economic stabilizers, so they invest in alternative investments from a diversification perspective. Collectively, they have more than doubled since 2008, reaching $7 trillion in assets under management by the end of 2014.57, 58 Their rapid growth and large average size has quickly made them an important source of capital for alternative investors. Namely, their allocations to alternative investments have already risen to levels similar to pension funds, which make them the fourth largest investor in alternatives. Many of the largest funds, like their large pension fund peers, are also building the internal capability to invest alongside alternative funds or to invest directly in deals without the support of a third party fund.

5.2.2. Financial institutions

High-net worth individuals and family offices have played an important role in the creation of the industry, as well as in its continuing growth. Without the cash flow, operational, or governance constraints that most institutional investors face, affluent individuals are able to focus predominantly on investing for long horizons. This allows them to invest in new and unproven business models and firms, which have proven critical to the long-term success and continued growth of alternatives. Affluent individuals funded the original venture capital and private equity buyout firms, and hedge funds that gave birth to the industry. They also continue to be key sources of capital for new and potentially innovative firms. Overall, they usually invest more of their portfolio in alternatives than any other type of investor.

Financial institutions, such as banks, asset managers, and insurance companies, have been a steady and long-term source of capital for alternative investment firms. Asset managers are intermediaries that invest in alternative investments on behalf of their clients. In contrast, banks and insurance companies both use cash inflows from clients to invest in alternatives, with the goal of diversifying their portfolios and profiting from the difference between the returns the investments generate and the liabilities due their clients. Financial regulations limit their ability to invest in alternatives, so they only allocate a few percentage points to alternatives. Still, given the large pools of capital that financial investors manage (including asset managers), their absolute allocations to alternatives are second only to pension funds.

5.2.5. Wealthy individuals

5.2.6. Funds of funds 5.2.3. Endowments and foundations Endowments and foundations have long been among the strongest supporters of the alternative investment industry. Overall, they are the third largest investor in alternative investments. Similar to wealthy individuals, endowments and foundations have a long-term investment orientation and relatively limited cash flow, legal, or governance constraints, and allocate relatively large amounts to alternatives. The increased scale, relative to individuals, means that they are also able to devote significant resources to developing teams capable of identifying and investing in new or innovative assets or firms and do so with larger amounts of capital than individuals are able to provide.

20

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

Funds of funds have provided investors with the ability to access alternatives since the 1960s, before the modern industry came into existence. Funds of funds pool capital from investors, then invest in a diverse group of alternative funds within a single asset class or segment (strategy, region, industry, risk profile, etc.). Investors without billions allocated to alternatives often find funds of funds attractive, as they are able to quickly and efficiently gain exposure to alternatives without having to develop an internal capability of assessing hundreds of funds in each alternative asset class. They are also often able to gain access to specific funds that might have minimum investment requirements that they cannot meet due to their small scale. Larger funds may also find funds of funds attractive, particularly those that offer exposure to a specific region or strategy that might otherwise be difficult to access.

Sources of returns

6. Sources of returns

tant for private equity buyouts and for some (but not all) hedge fund strategies, while investment selection is the primary source of value venture capital and private equity buyout firms. Figure 27 summarises the relative importance of each attribute for each asset class and investment strategy, while Box 3 looks at the sources of returns in one example sector, private equity, and discusses how the mix has varied over time.

At first glance, many of the asset classes that fall under the alternatives umbrella seem to have little in common. However, all firms in the alternatives universe rely on one or more of the attributes in Figure 26 in order to generate their returns. Below we take a look at these attributes in turn, noting that their importance varies considerably depending on the asset class in question. For example, leverage tends to be particularly imporFigure 26: Sources of value for alternative investors Optimize the financial instruments and structures and managing the related risk

Identify what and where to invest capital

Financial Engineering

Investment Selection

Improve the operations, management, and governance of a firm

Identify when to buy/ sell an asset and who to sell it to Timing

Leverage

Returns generated by AI

Operational Improvements

The use of debt to increase returns

Governance Structure

Strong alignment between investment managers and asset owners

Risk Management Managing the risk associated with investments

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

Figure 27: Relative importance of each source of value by asset class Source of value Investment selection • •

Hedge funds Private equity

HIGH

infrastructure Private debt • Private equity buyouts •

N/A

Level of importance

Venture capital

MODERATE



Financial engineering

Hedge funds (Event driven, Fixed • Private equity buyouts income, Global macro) • Private equity infrastructure • Private equity buyouts Private equity infrastructure •



Hedge funds (Activist) Private equity buyouts • Venture capital •







Hedge funds Private debt



Hedge funds (Long/short)







Venture capital



Hedge funds (Emerging markets & distressed) • Infrastructure & Distressed debt • Private debt







Governance structure

Operational improvements

Leverage

Hedge funds Private equity

infrastructure • Private debt • Private equity buyouts • Venture capital

Private equity infrastructure

Hedge funds (Non-activist) • Private debt

Venture capital

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

21

Sources of returns

6.1. Governance structures The way alternative investment firms and their investments are structured is a fundamental source of value for the industry. Most firms structure their investments such that their interests are reasonably well aligned with that of their investors. Doing so increases the incentive for all actors to focus on identifying and capturing value. For example, the primary driver of compensation for a hedge fund manager comes from carry (performance fees) and a hurdle rate – a practice that has been linked to stronger returns59 – rather than solely on management fees based on assets under management. Issues of incentive alignment can be mitigated by the requirement that the manager co-invest in the fund.60 Across the alternative investment sector, this strong alignment with investor interests supports a greater flexibility in investment mandates, e.g. the ability to go “short” in the case of hedge funds or to invest across a wide range of sectors. In turn, flexibility and the ability to respond quickly to changes in the market helps alternative investors to pursue opportunities that may not be available to traditional asset managers following stricter investment mandates. Examples of this include the ability to: a) invest across different sectors, asset types, and geographies; b) utilize leverage; c) use derivatives; and d) take short positions in securities. Alternative investors also often impose the same kind of incentive structures on the companies they control, which encourages firm-level managers to pursue operational and other improvements.

6.2. Investment selection Investment selection is a critical source of returns for every investment firm, with timing being a critical source of returns for every differentiator between each of the alternative asset classes. Venture capital and private equity buyout firms develop a range of skills that allow them to screen and select the firms, entrepreneurs and management with the most potential. Partly this comes down to building not only proprietary knowledge about particular companies, but also in-depth knowledge about the industry sector and its cycle. For example, they develop knowledge as to which sectors they believe are likely to do well over a given multiyear investment horizon, then select the best time to buy and sell an investment. In contrast, most hedge funds seek to exploit market imperfections and arbitrage pricing discrepancies over a much shorter time horizon that ranges from just microseconds to several months or quarters, though some may hold their investments for longer periods of time.

6.3. Timing The timing of when to buy and sell an asset is an important source of value. Unlike traditional investment funds, alternative investors have complete control over when to acquire an asset, when to sell it, how to sell it, and who to sell it to. The increased flexibility allows them to maximize the value of an investment. They can sell it shortly after acquiring it or patiently wait many years to sell it. In most instances, they do not have to sell it in the 22

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

same manner that they acquired it, which allows them to identify the most profitable way to exit an investment. For example, a venture capital or private equity firm may invest in a private company, but they can select whether to exit the deal by listing the company on a public exchange (IPO), selling it to a secondary fund, or selling it to a corporation.

6.4. Risk management The ability to understand, value, and manage the risks associated with an investment is another area where alternative investors are able to create value.61 Managing the increased risk associated with private equity buyout deals, which often use large amounts of debt, is one example of how alternative investors use risk management to create value. A second example pertains to their ability to analyse, understand, and value complex securities or structured products, which is an area that many hedge funds specialize in. Another example is that of distressed debt investors, which take on the long and risky task of finding new ways to generate profits from a company that is failing or already in bankruptcy.

6.5. Leverage Another hallmark of most alternative asset classes is the use of leverage to enhance returns. Private equity (buyouts, infrastructure, real estate) and many hedge funds use debt within the capital structure of their investments, far beyond the levels applied by most corporations. Investors benefit from the tax shield on debt (i.e., interest is tax deductible). It also serves to enhance returns (or losses) generated by other investment skills, such as asset selection, though it comes at the cost of increasing risk to the investment. The amount of debt available to alternative investors and the form it has taken has varied over the years. The key determinants have been the business cycle and regulations. The amount of debt available is usually linked to the business cycle, with more debt being available during economic upturns. The regulatory climate also plays an important role, as regulations determine which institutions can invest in alternatives related debt, as well as how much debt financial intermediaries, such as banks, can create. The actual type of debt issued to alternative investors has varied widely over the years and has included senior or subordinated debt, high yield bonds and leveraged loans, and structured products such as CLOs and CDOs. Throughout, the principal acquirers of this debt have been institutional investors such as pension funds.

6.6. Operational improvements Improving the operational performance of firms they own is another important source of returns. Venture capital firms, for example, offer advice and support to start-up businesses and often supply key pieces of expertise until the firm matures enough to fill gaps in its management team. Private equity buyout firms seek to im-

Sources of returns

prove the productivity of the firms they acquire by pushing them to adopt the best operational practices and to invest in additional R&D. Most of these practices could be implemented by companies without the help of an alternative investor, but they are often implemented more rapidly and thoroughly when alternative investors become involved.

6.7. Financial engineering Financial engineering involves identifying and understanding all of the risks associated with an investment, then packaging and distributing these risks to the investor most willing to hold them. Financial theory argues that investors able and willing to assume risks that other investors avoid should in turn be rewarded with outsized returns or risk premia. Sources of risk include the tenure, liquidity, leverage, and complexity of an investment. Investors willing to increase their exposure to one or more of those elements can expect to be compensated in the form of higher returns. For example, a private equity buyout firm acquiring a company may use a range of different types of capital, including equity, leveraged loans, high yield bonds, and mezzanine debt, with some of these being further packaged into collateralized debt obligations (CDOs) or collateralized loan obligations (CLOs). Each of these securities will have a different mix of risks and expected returns associated with them. Parcelling out risk in such a manner allows alternative investors to both increase the pool of potential investment capital and better meet the needs of individual investors.

Box 3: How has the source of returns for private equity firms varied over time? Here we describe the key sources of value for private equity buyouts – investment selection and sector expertise, leverage and financial engineering, and operational improvements – and discuss how the relative importance of these has varied over time.62 Investment selection and sector expertise A critical part of the value proposition for many firms is their ability to build skills to identify and execute the deals with the strongest prospect of generating returns in excess of traditional public equity.63 However, the value of this skill has been reduced in recent years due to three factors. First, the skill of accurately valuing companies has improved over the past few decades. In turn, the likelihood of identifying a company that is materially mispriced has fallen significantly. Second, the increase in the number of potential targets has not kept pace with the increase in the size of the funds managed by private equity buyout firms. The reason is that the number of potential target companies falls exponentially as the enterprise value of the target company rises, provided a firm seeks to acquire larger companies when it raises a larger fund. Finally, the level of competition, from both other private equity buyout firms and corporations, has increased dramatically over time. The natural result is an increase in the price that companies pay to acquire a company and a commensurate reduction in expected returns.

Still, in spite of the more challenging environment, the ability to garner returns through expertise remains an important role. Deal sourcing remains absolutely critical for firms specialising in small cap and emerging markets, where there is less competition or agreement on how to value a company. The development of deep sector expertise has become a core skill because more competition for mid-market or large companies means that understanding the business environment and sector cycles are an important part of investment selection. It is also a key factor when making operational improvements. Leverage and financial engineering The emergence of junk bonds and inexpensive debt in the 1980s marked the introduction of leverage and financial engineering as a key source of value for private equity buyout firms. Leverage, which was typically taken by the target firm and not the investor directly, enhanced the potential returns of the investors, but also increased the financial risks of a company. In response, firms competed to build skills in financial engineering and structured deals in ways that enabled them to create and capture value by doing so. Leverage remains an important characteristic of private equity buyout deals. However the basic skills associated with using high levels of leverage (and, to a substantial extent, financial engineering) are no longer considered proprietary and the benefits are often priced into the deal upfront. Today, the degree to which a firm is able to derive value from leverage or financial engineering is largely a function of the size of the deal, the sophistication of the market, and current market conditions, rather than as a result of any proprietary leverage that a private equity firm provides. Operational improvements Private equity buyout firms have long appointed management teams, but in the years immediately preceding the financial crisis of 2008 – something of a “Golden Age” – the investment in improving operations at portfolio companies reached an intensity rarely seen in earlier cycles.64 The primary driver behind this was the steady erosion of the value that could be captured using more traditional levers. The ability to improve the performance of companies at the operating level, including market leaders and global firms worth billions of dollars, continues to be a key source of value for many firms. Many of the leading firms now have operating partners and professionals with industry expertise involved at each stage of the deal process, from target identification through to post-acquisition management. Many have also developed in-house consulting arms, e.g. KKR’s Capstone, as well as portfolios of former CEOs to help run the acquired companies.65 The trend has shown tremendous growth in recent years, with the number of partners focused on operations nearly doubling from 535 to 919 from 2013 to 2015.66

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23

Sources of returns

—— Operational improvement

BOX 4: Case study – Hertz deal The 2005 buyout of Hertz, a leading rental car company, from the automaker Ford by a group of private equity buyout firms provides an example of how such firms operate and how they generate returns for investors. Background and acquisition The case, as is common in the industry, began years before the acquisition itself. In 2000, Clayton Dubilier & Rice (CD&R), a private equity buyout firm, began investigating the auto rental sector. By 2002 it had identified the Hertz division of Ford, as an ideal target and approached Ford with regard to acquiring Hertz.67 CD&R’s interest stemmed from its belief that Hertz was an inherently strong brand that was not performing as well as it could because it was an “orphan” unit within the auto giant.68 Ford reached a similar conclusion in 2005 and began an effort to divest Hertz, which included filing for an IPO and conducting a competitive auction. Ultimately, Ford elected to sell Hertz to a private equity buyout consortium consisting of CD&R, the Carlyle Group, and Merrill Lynch Global Private Equity for $14.8 billion. The consortium paid $2.3 billion in equity and issued $5.6 billion in corporate bonds and loans and $6.9 billion in asset-backed securities to fund the purchase price.69 Ownership and strategic changes The consortium, led by CD&R, owned and influenced the operations and financing of Hertz for more than seven years, as they did not sell their final stakes in the company until May 2013.70 Over this period, they would make a number of decisions that affected the strategic direction, operations, governance, profitability, and risk of Hertz. —— Strategic direction Post-acquisition, Hertz sought to expand into new market segments and ancillary businesses. The value of buying and selling cars can be so lucrative for auto rental companies that some competitors, such as Enterprise, “are so good at it that rental income is just icing on the cake.”71 Recognizing this, Hertz acquired British Car Auctions (BCA), a specialist company that sells used vehicles, in 2009. Under Ford, Hertz had been primarily focused on the premium and corporate market. However, Hertz sought to expand into the leisure and value conscious market and did so by acquiring Dollar Thrifty in 2012. It also expanded the number of off-airport locations, adding 1,000 locations under new ownership.72, 73

24

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

The new owners identified and implemented a number of operational changes that improved the customer experience and increased the profitability of the company. Seeking to address customer concerns, Hertz aggressively introduced hybrid vehicles, added self-service kiosks to its locations, increased the number of vehicles at suburban locations during weekends, simplified the car cleaning process to reduce the time vehicles were unavailable to customers, and made it much easier for customers to purchase vehicles from Hertz.74, 75 Once Hertz was no longer a captive part of Ford, it sought to improve operations by negotiating better rates when it acquired vehicles and questioned whether it needed large in-house computer programming teams or security operations, with both eventually being outsourced.76 CD&R also sought to streamline operations by closing money losing off-airport branches and reducing overhead costs at locations in Europe, which were several times higher than at US locations.77 —— Governance and management structure The spin-out of Hertz by the private equity firms resulted in a change in the governance and management structure of the company. The new structure strengthened the alignment between the consortium and the Hertz management team and created financial incentives for a wide range of employees to increase the performance of Hertz. The changes started at the top. A new CEO (Mark Frissora), with a background in process improvement and industrial management and prior experience at General Electric and as the CEO of auto parts supplier Tenneco, was brought in to run Hertz.78 He personally invested $6 million in Hertz, received a salary of $950,000, far more than previous executives under Ford, and was awarded bonuses, Hertz stock options and other grants (not poorly performing Ford stock) worth millions if he performed well.79 Similar types of incentives were awarded to hundreds of other employees at Hertz, which reinforced their incentive to focus on reaching key performance metrics.80 —— Financial engineering and risk management The consortium used a number of financial engineering and risk management techniques to acquire, manage, and exit the Hertz deal. In order to finance the deal, the private equity buyout firms used multiple forms of debt, including a senior secured bank loan, a bridge loan, and US dollar and euro asset-backed securities secured by Hertz’s fleet of cars in the US and Europe.81 The use of so much debt increased the risk to the company, which needed to be duly managed, as interest payments increased from 6.7% in 2005 to 11.2% in 2006 before they began to decline.82 In order to reduce the risk of low equity returns, the group filed for an IPO the year after the acquisition, which provided the capital to issue a special dividend that could be returned to investors. The group would retain a majority stake through 2010, and then begin to reduce its stake in Hertz until it exited completely in May 2013.83, 84

Sources of returns

ship period.86 Customers were better off due to the investments that Hertz made, but employees did not fare as well. Namely, Hertz reported having 32,100 employees when it was acquired, but that number had been reduced by 29% to 22,900 by the end of 2010. Much of the loss can be attributed to the effect of the financial crisis, as non-private equity managed rental car competitors Avis and Dollar Thrifty saw their workforces fall by 35% and 29% during the same period.

Outcome The deal proved successful for most stakeholders. Investors in the deal, including the fund investors (pension funds, endowments, insurance companies, etc.), the private equity buyout firms, and management teams, did quite well. The investment generated a gross return of 33% (IRR) and yielded 2.6 dollars for each dollar invested.85 Public shareholders also benefited, as the Hertz stock increased 66% from when it went public (November 16, 2006) to when the private equity firms exited the investment (May 6, 2013), compared to increases of 48% and 16% for competitor Avis and the broader S&P 500 respectively. The profitability of Hertz also increased, with EBITDA up 57% during the owner-

Hertz | Timeline

2000-04 Clayton Dubilier researches auto industry and identifies Hertz as a target

2000-04

2005 (Dec) PE group acquires Hertz for $14.8 billion Ownership stake (%)

0

2007-09 Operational upgrades and expansion plans are implemented

2006 (Jul) New CEO (Mark Frissora) joins Hertz

2005

2006

2006 (Nov) Partial IPO (27.5% of shares issued to the public) 96

2007-08

2007 (Jun) Sale of 14% of shares 69

2009 Hertz acquires car reseller BCA for ~ £400M

2009-10

2011

2009-10 Additional 4% of shares are sold 55

2012 Hertz acquires Dollar Thrifty for $4.1 billion

2011-12

2011 Another 12% of shares are sold 39

51

2013

2013 (May) Sells final shares (39%) in Hertz 0

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

25

Role in the financial system

7. Role in the financial system

7.1. Leverage

The alternative investment industry is part of a much broader financial ecosystem (Figure 28). Since the 1980s, the industry has relied on banks, insurers, and other types of financial intermediaries to supply leverage (debt financing), provide critical services such as transaction support, act as counterparties, and generate new financial products – as we describe in more detail below.

A critical way in which the financial industry supports alternative investing is through directly and indirectly providing loans in the form of debt financing. The impact of this can hardly be overstated, with asset classes such as private equity buyouts, hedge funds, and private equity infrastructure relying on debt financing to pay for 50% to 80% of their investments (Figure 29). Their ability to apply leverage allows these firms to pursue larger targets and to improve returns (or reduce) returns.

Growth in the alternatives is therefore somewhat dependent upon the future shape and health of the wider financial system, which in turn is undergoing a profound set of reforms following the global financial crisis that began in 2008.

Figure 28: Alternative investment firms within the wider financial system Alternative investors (GPs) • Venture capital • Private equity • Hedge funds • Other

Management fees Performance fees Return on commitment

GP commitment Capital providers (LPs) • Pension funds • Sovereign wealth funds • Wealthy individuals • Endowments/foundations • Asset managers/FoFs

LP commitment Net return

Fees Services

Investment

AI investment vehicle • Fund vehicle XYZ

Fees

Investment destination • Company (stake) • Physical asset (infrastructure, real estate) • Security (derivative or insurance contract

Gross return

Services Debt capital Services Rating Insurance

Regulated service providers • Banks • Rating agencies • Insurance companies • Money market funds

Fees and interest

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

Figure 29: The average amount of debt (leverage) used by different investment strategies 87, 88, 89 Debt as a percentage of the total deal value 100% 75% 50%

90

80

79

74

68

65

0

60

0

47

0%

29

25%

) ) ) ) ) re rt) e) ro) en ng ed uts wn wn ho riv ac ctu rgi ss om yo d S u e e do do u m / r r t t t l nc b g m i e n s s a r % i e n % y e a ( b (d fr ed 10 20 uit Ev ntu (Lo ds Glo e( ds Fix e( s( y in eq Ve un ds s( s( ag ag uit nd te fun d ef g d un g q u a f t n t f g e n r e v r u u e d e dg te Pri ef mo mo ef dg He dg va He dg dg He He me me Pri o He o He H H al pit ca

Source: Preqin, Citi, William Blair 26

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

Role in the financial system

For example, a private equity buyout firm with $ 1 billion of equity to invest might raise debt finance and, by using 67% debt, command a much larger $3 billion portfolio of businesses. Figure 30 illustrates how debt can improve investment returns by using the day-to-day example of a home mortgage. Figure 30: Illustration of how leverage works Simplified home mortgage example Debt Equity Interest rate Starting home value One-year appreciation

0%

67%

100%

33%

n/a

5%

100,000

100,000

10%

10%

Ending home value

110,000

110,000

Starting equity

100,000

33,333

10,000

10,000

Equity gains Interest Ending equity Return on equity

0

-3,350

110,000

39,650

10.0%

20.0%

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

Not surprisingly, debt is a critical component of growth and returns for many alternative asset classes. The financial services sector, particularly investment banks and money market funds, have long played a critical role in providing debt to alternative investors. They do this by selling the debt directly to investors or by bundling individual loans or bonds together into financial products that investors are willing to purchase. In some circumstances, alternative investors provide leverage to the financial system. For instance, private debt funds support the creation of credit, as they provide loans directly to businesses or acquire loans made to companies.

7.2. Services Financial institutions provide an extensive array of other services to the alternative investors, some of which also serve as inputs additional services offered by financial institutions. Examples include: —— Asset and private wealth manag­ers help alternative investment firms raise capital. —— Investment banks provide M&A and transaction support to private equity buyout firms and sponsor the IPOs and trade sales that offer exit routes for venture capital and private equity buyout deals. The public listing of firms typically results in additional market research and coverage of the companies by the bank, thus creating a new service offered to investors and the broader market. In addition, the debt issued on behalf of alternative investors, is often packaged by investment banks into securitized products, which are then sold to investors.

—— Ratings agencies rate the bonds and loans issued by private equity buyout backed firms, making them attractive to debt investors. The large amount of debt issued to these companies also serves as an input into the ratings process itself, as it increases the number of data points that analysts can use when seeking to value existing debt or to identify a reasonable price at which to issue new debt. —— Prime brokerage and treasury units at banks provide the transaction services and record keeping required to make financial investments, track asset ownership, and meet regulatory requirements.

7.3. Counterparties Ready access to trading counterparties in financial markets is critical, particularly for hedge funds. To implement their complex investment strategies, hedge funds need to buy and sell standardized equity and fixed income products, as well as bespoke derivatives. This requires large and liquid financial markets and sophisticated trading counterparties to form the other side of each deal. The financial system and the economy benefit from such transactions, as hedge funds provide financial services firms, corporations, and retail investors with a tremendous amount of liquidity and increased levels of price discovery. The former makes it easier for investors to buy or sell a security, while the latter means that there is greater clarity around how much a security is worth.

7.4. Product innovation Financial sector innovation has helped the alternative industry to grow, but it has been a double-edged sword. Consider complex structured products such as collateralized debt obligations (CDOs) and collateralized loan obligations (CLOs), which packaged junk grade fixed income securities into investment grade instruments. These products helped private equity buyout firms to issue large amounts of debt in the boom years before the global financial crisis in 2008. However, similar instruments that packaged mortgage related debt and sold to traditional investors proved disastrous, as the opaque distribution of risk throughout the financial system made it difficult to ascertain how much risk was being accumulated and where it was located. Other such examples include the invention of high yield “junk” bonds in the late 1980s, followed by the crash of the early junk bond market, and the trading strategies of Long-Term Capital Management, a giant hedge fund that came close to failure in September 1998 before being rescued by the banking industry.

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

27

Role in society and the economy

8. Role in society and the economy

8.1. Capital markets

The alternative investment industry plays an important role in society and its actions affect a wide range of stakeholders through their impact on the world’s capital markets and, especially, the real economy (Figure 31). Figure 32 qualitatively summarizes the academic literature discussed below with regard to how each major alternative asset class affects society (positively, negatively, or both). As we discuss below, capital markets benefit through mechanisms such as increased market liquidity and lower transaction costs, while alternative investment drives the real economy through its direct economic impact (e.g. improving retirement outcomes for millions of people) and through other key mechanisms such as the promotion of innovation (e.g. funding new technologies).

Perhaps the most important effect of the alternative investment industry on capital markets is the efficient allocation of capital to long-term, illiquid or risky investment assets that might otherwise be underfunded by traditional investors. Venture capital, for example, plays a critical role in efficiently allocating capital to high risk entrepreneurial endeavours. Research has shown that venture capital firms serve as a screening mechanism: they only fund 1% of the companies that seek their funding,90 identifying successful first-time entrepreneurs at far higher rates than other capital providers.91 The rigorous screening mechanism has proven to be quite successful. As few as 0.16% of all new businesses receive venture capital, but 60% of IPOs are backed by venture capital.92 Alternative investors also generate benefits for capital markets and investors. Researchers have found that the immense trading volume of hedge funds strengthens price discovery93 and reduces bid-ask spreads (transaction costs). They do this by serving as counterparties willing to buy or sell assets that might otherwise have remained illiquid. Critically, hedge funds account for 33% of foreign exchange trading, 40% of all stock trading globally,

Figure 31: Stakeholders affected by alternative investment strategies

Political system

Start-ups

Small and medium sized enterprises

Corporate actors

State owned enterprises

Regulators

Private equity

Wealthy individuals

Sovereign wealth funds

Sources of capital

Alternative investments

Financial institutions

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

Policy entities

Unions

Venture capital

Asset managers

Other

Pension funds

28

Public actors

Hedge funds

Multi-national corporations

Central banks

Retail banks

Investment banks

Financial system

Money market

Exchanges

Rating agencies

Role in society and the economy

Figure 32: Mechanisms through which alternative investing contributes to the economy Negative side effects

Mild

Description

High positive benefits

VC

PE

HF



Capital markets



Financial innovation



Long-term capital



High-risk capital Transaction costs AI’s contribution to the economy

Economic impact Innovation

Real economy

1

Enables investors to buy/sell assets when they want

Liquidity

Employment

Develops new and innovative products, but these can produce new risks as well

Provides the capital needed to invest in long-term projects Provides capital to projects that are too risky for normal investors •

Supports businesses and consumers by reducing the cost of deals/trades •

• •

Increased GDP growth Increased competition within industries

Funds the technologies that will change the world tomorrow •

• •

Corporate governance 1



Firm productivity







VC creates new employment PE slightly decreases employment Strengthens governance structures Reduces principal-agent issues Improves the productivity of firms Invests in new research

Concerns have been raised that activist hedge funds may focus too much on short-term results

Source: World Economic Forum Investors Industries

30% of all US bond trading, and 85% of distressed debt securities. They are also key players in derivatives markets, accounting for 55% of US investment grade and 80% of high-yield related derivatives.94, 95 While recent research has found that hedge funds can stabilize markets in times of crisis by providing liquidity, the evidence is not yet conclusive.96, 97 The sophisticated analysis applied by many hedge funds helps markets by facilitating the application of complex instruments98 and increasing the probability of success in restructuring cases.99 The impact on society of hedge funds that use high-frequency trading strategies is still being actively debated. Their immense trading activities may lead to an overall reduction in the cost of trading securities for all investors. However, it may also generate additional costs for some investors100, 101 and even increase net costs in some instances.102 Some governments, including Germany and Australia, have raised concerns that certain activities could undermine some aspects of a well-functioning market.103, 104 Seeking to address these concerns, researchers have proposed a number of recommendations for regulators.105, 106 Overall, the benefits to society brought by hedge funds appear to outweigh the costs, but the evidence either way is not yet conclusive.

8.2. Real economy 8.2.1. Economic impact From the perspective of the public, the most important effect of alternative investment is to increase the level of innovation and competition in the economy. For example, economies that foster venture capital benefit from a positive spillover effect107, 108, 109 from the patents and technologies that are developed and shared with other firms. In addition, 22% of the US GDP can be traced to companies that were originally venture-backed.110 At an industry level, studies have found that introducing private equity buyouts into an industry can generate enough competitive pressure to force other companies to follow suit in terms of improve their practices and productivity.111 Similarly, profitability, job growth, and productivity growth can increase for public companies in the same sector following the takeover of a competitor by a private equity buyout firm.112

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

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Role in society and the economy

The investment in alternatives by major institutions is designed to improve retirement outcomes for millions of pensioners, which contributes to their spending power in the economy. The rise in allocations to alternatives in pension funds and other large institutions since the financial crisis is based on the attractive returns they have harvested from the sector in recent years, with $1.4 trillion of capital returned to investors by private equity buyout firms alone from 2012-2014.113

Whatever the net effect, the process generates considerable uncertainty for both employees and company executives. Deal partners at top performing firms are quick to intervene,124 with about one third of CEOs replaced within the first 100 days of ownership, and two thirds replaced over a four-year window.125 The willingness to intervene early is one reason why an average of only 1.2% of private equity buyout owned companies defaulted on debt obligations from 1970-2002 (vs 4.7% for comparable companies) and only 2.8% (vs 6.2%) did so during the financial crisis period (2008-2009).126

8.2.2. Innovation The degree to which alternative investments drive innovation varies widely by asset class. Hedge funds typically do not invest for periods long enough to influence long-term rates of innovation in society. However, research suggests that venture capital backed companies may be three or four times as efficient at generating innovations, as measured by patents, than traditional corporations are.114 While annual investments in venture capital have held steady at 0.1-0.2% of the value of the stock market, the sector accounts for 14% of all innovation related activity in the US.115 In addition, companies that were originally backed by venture capital firms now generate 40-90% of total revenues in US high tech industries (such as software and biotech).116 There has been concern that private equity buyout firms seek short-term gains by dramatically cutting back on research and capital expenditures. However, recent academic research in the US finds that the quality of research (using patents as a proxy) increases, and that small businesses owned by private equity buyout firms are more likely to license and sell their technology rights and to engage in collaborative research and development agreements.117, 118 Evidence is similar in Europe, as the European Central Bank finds that private equity buyouts accounts for 8% of aggregate industrial spending, but as much as 12% of innovation (again, using patents as a proxy).119

8.2.3. Employment Alternative investment’s impact on employment is more controversial. Venture capital firms tend to be regarded as job creators, as 11%120 of all jobs in the US private sector are at companies supported by venture capital, including some 50-90% of all jobs in high tech sectors.121 Private equity buyout owned companies employ more than 8.1 million individuals in the US alone and their activities have sparked a robust debate in society.122 The industry often seems to epitomize the best and worst characteristics of Schumpeter’s notion of creative destruction. Academics find that private equity buyout firms are often able to increase the dynamism and productivity at the companies they own, but the speed of change and its effect on individuals can generate considerable opposition, e.g., within the labour movement. In fact, research suggests that private equity buyout owned companies experience much higher rates of both job destruction and creation, for a net result of a 1% decline in employment relative to previous owners, with a large share of job losses coming from companies in the retail sector.123 30

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

8.2.4. Corporate governance Alternative investors are often considered to have a positive effect on corporate governance, though there are also some concerns. As an example of a positive effect, efforts by activist hedge funds to improve company performance seem to have a beneficial impact on the governance of companies and on the accompanying stock price.127, 128, 129, 130 This is because the credible threat of a takeover encourages management teams to focus on maximizing shareholder value.131, 132, 133, 134 At the same time, some have argued that such activism reduces the role of the board and the focus of a company on pursuing long-term objectives.135 Private equity buyout firms can also improve how companies are run. One way is through reducing the principal/agent problem inherent in public equity ownership, as board members at private equity buyout backed companies are the owners of the company, not merely representatives. Relative to their peers at public companies, boards at private equity backed companies are much more likely to direct firm strategy, set rigorous performance metrics, and actively hold management teams accountable to those metrics.136, 137, 138 Most boards also meet with much greater frequency (monthly),139 tend to be smaller than their public counterparts,140, 141, 142, 143 and have more relevant experience.144, 145 In turn, they devote less time to managing multiple stakeholders, short-term earnings, or audit and compliance reporting,146 and are about three times as likely to list value creation as their number one priority relative to public boards which, by contrast, list compliance and risk management as their top priority.147 However, the high degree of alignment between owners and investors and the strong focus on returns can make it difficult for alternative investors to fully incorporate the views of other stakeholders. The diversity of ownership found in public companies and their boards often leaves them more adept at representing the many stakeholders found in society and provides for a wide range of voices on the board.148 Private equity buyout firms further strengthen the governance structure of the companies they own by implementing governance reforms. A significantly larger share of management team compensation is likely to be tied to clear, absolute, and rigorous cash flow driven performance metrics, compared to the use of stock or relative performance metrics found among their public sector peers.149, 150 They typically require management teams to

Role in society and the economy

investment to hold meaningful ownership stakes, with CEOs holding 3-3.5% in the companies they operate, which is 2-4x as much as their public peers.151, 152, 153 In addition, the rest of the management team typically holds another 15% of the company.154

8.2.5. Firm productivity Alternative investors are often able to enhance the productivity of the firms they own. For example, venture capital firms: a) impart operational and management expertise that is lacking in start-up companies; b) help identify new market opportunities; c) strengthen hiring processes; d) help run operations more efficiently; e) bring products to market faster; f) make introductions to vendors that can aid entrepreneurs in scaling up their companies; and g) bring in new and more experienced management teams to help companies reach the next level of growth or globalization.155, 156, 157 The impact can be seen immediately and is long lasting.158 Namely, venture capital backed companies are less likely to fail and more likely to grow faster than their peers, both while owned by venture capitalists and after they have exited.159, 160, 161, 162 Admittedly, this is partly due to the fact that the strongest companies choose to be funded by the best venture capital funds, as this confirms their quality.163 It is worth noting that the demand for start-up capital from entrepreneurs has been somewhat curtailed in recent years, as it is expensive in terms of the amount of equity that needs to be handed over to outside investors.164 Private equity buyout firms are also incentivized to upgrade the performance of the companies they own, as there is a strong alignment between the company profitability and returns to investors and owners. Management teams tend to adopt more demanding performance metrics, introduce merit-based hiring and firing polices, shutter underperforming businesses and introduce lean manufacturing and other modern operating techniques.165 Doing so often requires investment, but the absence of short-term shareholder pressure means that they can spend more on capital goods than their public peers.166 Within the first two years, productivity at private equity buyout backed companies is enhanced by nearly 2%167 and the outperformance lasts even after the company has returned to public ownership.168

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Concluding remarks: A look to the future Alternative investments are a large, growing, and important part of the economy and they affect everyone in one form or another. Consequently, it is an industry that requires close attention not only from regulators, but also from the general public. With this report we have attempted to break down the complex workings and sometimes opaque history of alternative investments. Three insights stand out: 1. Alternative investments have grown to become a critical component of the global financial system. The industry provides liquidity, various forms of capital (from long-term to high-risk) and is a source of innovation. Alternative investors are also highly diverse, ranging from high-risk venture capital to long-term private equity buyout funds. As such, they are a key part of the engine that keeps capital moving within the financial system and in the real world. 2. Alternative investors serve capital providers with higher returns and greater diversification. Capital providers include pension funds, sovereign wealth funds and foundations and endowments, all of which serve the public good. Pension funds, for example, rely on returns to close their funding gaps and secure the retirement of their beneficiaries, while sovereign wealth funds invest on behalf of the public in order to stabilize the economy and provide future benefits. Most such institutions include alternatives in their portfolio to achieve goals in the interest of their stakeholders. 3. The impact of alternative investments on the real economy is substantial. Alternative investors have an effect on the economy in numerous ways – and not all are unambiguously positive. At the highest level, they seek to allocate capital towards its most productive use and enforce discipline on its deployment. Often this means funding innovative new products, increasing firm productivity, or creating corporate governance structures that better align the interests of executives and investors. All of these changes have the potential to improve the economy and society, but the process of doing so may also result in adverse effects such as layoffs.

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The industry cannot thrive or survive by itself, as it relies on the broader financial system to provide much of the capital (e.g. debt capital) and services that it requires to operate. Thus, the potential unintended consequences of new financial regulations should be of significant concern to policy makers. A review and analysis of this topic can be found in our forthcoming report, Alternative Investments 2020: Regulatory Reform and Alternative Investments. It is also an industry that is quickly evolving in terms of its sources of capital and the business models that it deploys. New trends, such as institutionalization – the systematic upgrading of the architecture of both investors and asset owners, and retailization – the growth of retail investors as a source of capital, are altering business models and changing the alternative landscape. A sister report in the World Economic Forum Alternative Investments 2020 series, The Future of Alternative Investments, will cover these shifts and what they mean for investors and asset owners alike in greater depth. At the societal level, capturing the benefits of alternative investments, while managing their risks appropriately, requires a subtle understanding of the complex machinery at work. Our aim for this report is to contribute to this understanding and provide a primer and reference guide that can inform policymakers and the public. The Forum hopes to further meaningful debate on a highly important topic for society, rather than provide set answers. In this spirit, we welcome any feedback and constructive input.

Glossary 1) AltAssets Glossary1 2) Investopedia2 (2) Activist Investor – An individual or group that purchases large numbers of a public company’s shares and/or tries to obtain seats on the company’s board with the goal of effecting a major change in the company. A company can become a target for activist investors if it is mismanaged, has excessive costs, could be run more profitably as a private company or has another problem that the activist investor believes it can fix to make the company more valuable. (2) Accredited Investor – A term used by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) under Regulation D to refer to investors who are financially sophisticated and have a reduced need for the protection provided by certain government filings. Accredited investors include individuals, banks, insurance companies, employee benefit plans, and trusts. (1) Acquisition – The process of taking over a controlling interest in another company. Acquisition also describes any deal where the bidder ends up with 50 per cent or more of the company taken over. (1) Asset – Anything owned by an individual, a business or financial institution that has a present or future value i.e. can be turned into cash. In accounting terms, an asset is something of future economic benefit obtained as a result of previous transactions. Tangible assets can be land and buildings, fixtures and fittings; examples of intangible assets are goodwill, patents and copyrights. (1) Asset allocation – The percentage breakdown of an investment portfolio. This shows how the investment is divided among different asset classes. These classes include shares, bonds, property, cash and overseas investments. Institutions structure their allocation to balance risk and ensure they have a diversified portfolio. The asset classes produce a range of returns – for example, bonds provide a low but steady return, equities a higher but riskier return. Cash has a guaranteed return. Effective asset allocation maximises returns while covering liabilities. (1) Assets under management – see Capital under management (1) Benchmark – This is a standard measure used to assess the performance of a company. Investors need to know whether or not a company is hitting certain benchmarks as this will determine the structure of the investment package. For example, a company that is slow to reach certain benchmarks may compensate investors by increasing their stock allocation.

Private Equity and Venture Capital Glossary of Terms, http://www.altassets.net/private-equity-and-venture-capital glossary-of-terms

1

2 Hedge Funds Terms, http://www.investopedia.com/categories/ hedgefunds.asp

(1) Buy-out – This is the purchase of a company or a controlling interest of a corporation’s shares. This often happens when a company’s existing managers wish to take control of the company. See management buy-out (1) Capital call – see drawdown (1) Capital drawdown – see drawdown (1) Capital commitment – Every investor in a private equity fund commits to investing a specified sum of money in the fund partnership over a specified period of time. The fund records this as the limited partnership’s capital commitment. The sum of capital commitments is equal to the size of the fund. Limited partners and the general partnermust make a capital commitment to participate in the fund. (1) Capital distribution – These are the returns that an investor in a private equity fund receives. It is the income and capital realised from investments less expenses and liabilities. Once a limited partner has had their cost of investment returned, further distributions are actual profit. The partnership agreement determines the timing of distributions to the limited partner. It will also determine how profits are divided among the limited partners andgeneral partner. (1) Capital gain – When an asset is sold for more than the initial purchase cost, the profit is known as the capital gain. This is the opposite to capital loss, which occurs when an asset is sold for less than the initial purchase price. Capital gain refers strictly to the gain achieved once an asset has been sold – an unrealised capital gain refers to an asset that could potentially produce a gain if it was sold. An investor will not necessarily receive the full value of the capital gain – capital gains are often taxed; the exact amount will depend on the specific tax regime. (1) Capital under management – This is the amount of capital that the fund has at its disposal, and is managing, for investment purposes. (1) Carried interest – The share of profits that the fund manager is due once it has returned the cost of investment to investors. Carried interest is normally expressed as a percentage of the total profits of the fund. The industry norm is 20 per cent. The fund manager will normally therefore receive 20 per cent of the profits generated by the fund and distribute the remaining 80 per cent of the profits to investors. (1) Catch up – A clause that allows the general partner to take, for a limited period of time, a greater share of the carried interest than would normally be allowed. This continues until the time when the carried interest allocation, as agreed in the limited partnership, has been reached. This usually occurs when a fund has agreed a preferred return to investors – a fund may return the cost of investment, plus some other profits, to investors early. (1) Clawback – A clawback provision ensures that a general partner does not receive more than its agreed percentage of carried interest over the life of the fund. So, for example, if a general partner receives 21 percent of the partnership’s profits instead of the agreed 20 per cent, limited partners can claw back the extra one per cent. Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

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Glossary

(1) Closing – This term can be confusing. If a fund-raising firm announces it has reached first or second closing, it doesn’t mean that it is not seeking further investment. When fund raising, a firm will announce a first closing to release or drawdown the money raised so far so that it can start investing. A fund may have many closings, but the usual number is around three. Only when a firm announces a final closing is it no longer open to new investors. (1) Co-investment – Although used loosely to describe any two parties that invest alongside each other in the same company, this term has a special meaning when referring to limited partners in a fund. If a limited partner in a fund has co-investment rights, it can invest directly in a company that is also backed by the private equity fund. The institution therefore ends up with two separate stakes in the company – one indirectly through the fund; one directly in the company. Some private equity firms offer co-investment rights to encourage institutions to invest in their funds. The advantage for an institution is that it should see a higher return than if it invested all its private equity allocation in funds – it doesn’t have to pay a management fee and won’t see at least 20 per cent of its return swallowed by a fund’s carried interest. But to co-invest successfully, institutions need to have sufficient knowledge of the market to assess whether a co-investment opportunity is a good one. (1) Debt financing – This is raising money for working capital or capital expenditure through some form of loan. This could be by arranging a bank loan or by selling bonds, bills or notes (forms of debt) to individuals or institutional investors. In return for lending the money, the individuals or institutions become creditors and receive a promise to repay principal plus interest on the debt. Distressed debt (otherwise known as vulture capital) – This is a form of finance used to purchase the corporate bonds of companies that have either filed for bankruptcy or appear likely to do so. Private equity firms and other corporate financiers who buy distressed debt don’t asset-strip and liquidate the companies they purchase. Instead, they can make good returns by restoring them to health and then prosperity. These buyers first become a major creditor of the target company. This gives them leverage to play a prominent role in the reorganisation or liquidation stage. (1) Distribution – see capital distribution (1) Drawdown – When a venture capital firm has decided where it would like to invest, it will approach its own investors in order to draw down the money. The money will already have been pledged to the fund but this is the actual act of transferring the money so that it reaches the investment target. (1) Due Diligence – Investing successfully in private equity at a fund or company level, involves thorough investigation. As a longterm investment, it is essential to review and analyse all aspects of the deal before signing. Capabilities of the management team, performance record, deal flow, investment strategy and legals, are examples of areas that are fully examined during the due diligence process.

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(1) Early-stage finance – This is the realm of the venture capital – as opposed to the private equity – firm. A venture capitalist will normally invest in a company when it is in an early stage of development. This means that the company has only recently been established, or is still in the process of being established – it needs capital to develop and to become profitable. Early-stage finance is risky because it’s often unclear how the market will respond to a new company’s concept. However, if the venture is successful, the venture capitalist’s return is correspondingly high. (1) Exit – Private equity professionals have their eye on the exit from the moment they first see a business plan. An exit is the means by which a fund is able to realise its investment in a company – by an initial public offering, a trade sale, selling to another private equity firm or a company buy-back. If a fund manager can’t see an obvious exit route in a potential investment, then it won’t touch it. Funds have the power to force an investee company to sell up so they can exit the investment and make their profit, but venture capitalists claim this is rare – the exit is usually agreed with the company’s management team. (1) First time fund – This is the first fund a private equity firm ever raises – whether the firm is made up of managers who have never raised a fund before or, as in many cases, the firm is a spin-off, where managers from different, established funds have joined forces to create their own, new firm. In the first instance, the managers do not have a track recordso investing with them can be very risky. In the second instance, the managers will have track records from their previous firms, but the investment is still risky because the individuals are unlikely to have worked together as a team before. (1) Fund of funds – A fund set up to distribute investments among a selection of private equity fund managers, who in turn invest the capital directly. Fund of funds are specialist private equity investors and have existing relationships with firms. They may be able to provide investors with a route to investing in particular funds that would otherwise be closed to them. Investing in fund of funds can also help spread the risk of investing in private equity because they invest the capital in a variety of funds. (1) Fund raising – The process by which a private equity firm solicits financial commitments from limited partners for a fund. Firms typically set a target when they begin raising the fund and ultimately announce that the fund has closed at such-and-such amount. This may mean that no additional capital will be accepted. But sometimes the firms will have multiple interim closings each time they have hit particular targets (first closings, second closings, etc.) and final closings. The term cap is the maximum amount of capital a firm will accept in its fund. (1) General partner – This can refer to the top-ranking partners at a private equity firm as well as the firm managing the private equity fund.

Glossary

(1) General partner contribution/commitment - The amount of capital that the fund manager contributes to its own fund. This is an important way for limited partners to ensure that their interests are aligned with those of the general partner. The US Department of Treasury recently removed the legal requirement of the general partner to contribute at least one per cent of fund capital, but this is still the usual contribution. (2) High-Frequency Trading (HFT) – A programme trading platform that uses powerful computers to transact a large number of orders at very fast speeds. High-frequency trading uses complex algorithms to analyse multiple markets and execute orders based on market conditions. Typically, the traders with the fastest execution speeds will be more profitable than traders with slower execution speeds. As of 2009, it is estimated more than 50% of exchange volume comes from high-frequency trading orders. (1) Holding period – This is the length of time that an investment is held. For example, if Company A invests in Company B in June 1996 and then sells its stake in June 1999, the holding period is three years. (1) Hurdle Rate – see preferred return (1) Initial public offering (IPO) – An IPO is the official term for ‘going public’. It occurs when a privately held company – owned, for example, by its founders plus perhaps its private equity investors – lists a proportion of its shares on a stock exchange. IPOs are an exitroute for private equity firms. Companies that do an IPO are often relatively small and new and are seeking equity capital to expand their businesses. (1) Internal rate of return (IRR) – This is the most appropriate performance benchmark for private equity investments. In simple terms, it is a time-weighted return expressed as a percentage. IRR uses the present sum of cash drawdowns (money invested), the present value of distributions (money returned from investments) and the current value of unrealised investments and applies a discount. The general partner‘s carried interest may be dependent on the IRR. If so, investors should get a third party to verify the IRR calculations. (1) Lead investor – The firm or individual that organises a round of financing, and usually contributes the largest amount of capital to the deal. (1) Leveraged buy-out (LBO) – The acquisition of a company using debt and equity finance. As the word leverage implies, more debt than equity is used to finance the purchase, eg 90 per cent debt to ten per cent equity. Normally, the assets of the company being acquired are put up as collateral to secure the debt. (1) Limited partners – Institutions or individuals that contribute capital to a private equity fund. LPs typically include pension funds, insurance companies, asset management firms and fund of fund investors.

(1) Limited partnership – The standard vehicle for investment in private equity funds. A limited partnership has a fixed life, usually of ten years. The partnership’s general partnermakes investments, monitors them and finally exits them for a return on behalf the investors – limited partners. The GP usually invests the partnership’s funds within three to five years and, for the fund’s remaining life, the GP attempts to achieve the highest possible return for each of the investments by exiting. Occasionally, the limited partnership will have investments that run beyond the fund’s life. In this case, partnerships can be extended to ensure that all investments are realised. When all investments are fully divested, a limited partnership can be terminated or ‘wound up’. (1) Lock-up period – A provision in the underwriting agreement between an investment bank and existing shareholders that prohibits corporate insiders and private equity investors from selling at IPO. (1) Management fee – This is the annual fee paid to the general partner. It is typically a percentage of limited partner commitments to the fund and is meant to cover the basic costs of running and administering a fund. Management fees tend to run in the 1.5 per cent to 2.5 per cent range, and often scale down in the later years of a partnership to reflect the GP’s reduced workload. The management fee is not intended to incentivise the investment team – carried interest rewards managers for performance. (1) Mezzanine financing – This is the term associated with the middle layer of financing in leveraged buy-outs. In its simplest form, this is a type of loan finance that sits between equity and secured debt. Because the risk with mezzanine financing is higher than with senior debt, the interest charged by the provider will be higher than that charged by traditional lenders, such as banks. However, equity provision– through warrants or options – is sometimes incorporated into the deal. (1) Portfolio – A private equity firm will invest in several companies, each of which is known as a portfolio company. The spread of investments into the various target companies is referred to as the portfolio. (1) Portfolio company – This is one of the companies backed by a private equity firm. (1) Preferred return – This is the minimum amount of return that is distributed to the limited partners until the time when the general partner is eligible to deduct carried interest. The preferred return ensures that the general partner shares in the profits of the partnership only after investments have performed well. (2) Prime Brokerage – A special group of services that many brokerages give to special clients. The services provided under prime brokering are securities lending, leveraged trade executions, and cash management, among other things. Prime brokerage services are provided by most of the large brokers, such as Goldman Sachs, Paine Webber, and Morgan Stanley Dean Witter.

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Glossary

(2) Retail Fund – A type of fund that is registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and is sold to individual investors through investment dealers and in open market transactions. Retail funds are often categorized as mutual funds, and carry lower initial investments and management expense ratios than non-retail funds. (1) Secondaries – The term for the market for interests in venture capital and private equity limited partnerships from the original investors, who are seeking liquidity of their investment before the limited partnership terminates. An original investor might want to sell its stake in a private equity firm for a variety of reasons: it needs liquidity, it has changed investment strategy or focus or it needs to re-balance its portfolio. The main advantage for investors looking at secondaries is that they can invest in private equity funds over a shorter period than they could with primaries. (1) Secondary buy-out – A common exit strategy. This type of buy-out happens when an investment firm’s holding in a private company is sold to another investor. For example, one venture capital firm might sell its stake in a private company to another venture capital firm. (1) Secondary market – the market for secondary buy-outs. This term should not be confused with secondaries. (2) Shadow Banking System – The financial intermediaries involved in facilitating the creation of credit across the global financial system, but whose members are not subject to regulatory oversight. The shadow banking system also refers to unregulated activities by regulated institutions. (1) Sliding fee scale – A management fee that varies over the life of a partnership. (1) Syndication – The sharing of deals between two or more investors, normally with one firm serving as the lead investor. Investing together allows venture capitalists to pool resources and share the risk of an investment. (1) Take downs – see drawdown (1) Term sheet – A summary sheet detailing the terms and conditions of an investment opportunity. (1) Vintage year – The year in which a private equity fund makes its first investment.  

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Acknowledgements Project Team Michael Drexler Senior Director and Head of Investors Industries, World Economic

Jason Rico Saavedra Senior Project Manager, Investors Industries, World Economic

Forum Michael Drexler is Senior Director and Head of Investors Industries at the World Economic Forum, where he oversees the community of institutional and private investors. He joined the Forum after nine years at Barclays, where he most recently was Managing Director and Global Head of Strategy, Commercial/Investment Banking and Wealth Management. At Barclays, he also held positions in Principal Investments and Finance as well as Chief of Staff to the Chairman. He joined Barclays Capital in 2002 from McKinsey & Company.

Jason Rico Saavedra is Senior Project Manager, Investors Industries and Global Leadership Fellow at the World Economic Forum. He leads projects that relate to private investors (private equity, hedge funds, venture capital), institutional investors (pension funds, sovereign wealth funds, endowments), and the global financial system. He joined the Forum after more than four years at McKinsey & Company, where he specialized in serving private investors, institutional investors, and financial services clients.  Prior to McKinsey & Company, he worked for growth stage e-commerce platforms in New York and Los Angeles.

Michael G. Jacobides Sir Donald Gordon Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, London Business School Michael holds the Sir Donald Gordon Chair of Entrepreneurship & Innovation at London Business School, where he is Associate Professor of Strategy. He studied in Athens, Cambridge, Stanford and Wharton (PhD) and has been on the faculties of Wharton and Harvard Business School, and visited NYU-Stern, Bocconi, U. of Paris and Singapore Management University. He has served on the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Global Financial Services and the Future of Investments and has been a Ghoshal Fellow at the Advanced Institute of Management, a Leverhulme Fellow and a NATO Scholar. He has worked, among others, with Santander, BBVA, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, Zurich, Airbus, Finmeccanica, Pirelli, Lufthansa, Vodafone, Nokia, McKinsey, PwC, Accenture, KPMG, MerckSerono, Roche and the NHS on executive development and strategy. He has participated in the European Council’s High Level Group on Innovation and Entrepreneurship and spearheaded the RedesignGreece initiative. He has published in the top academic journals and in managerial outlets such as the Harvard Business Review, FT, Forbes.com, Huffington Post, and interviewed by CNN, BBC and NPR.

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Acknowledgements

Project Team

Steering committee

Special thanks

Michael Drexler, Senior Director, Head of Investors Industries, World Economic Forum

Alan Howard, Founder, Brevan Howard Investment Products

Michael Jacobides, Sir Donald Gordon Chair of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, London Business School

Anthony Scaramucci, Founder and Managing Partner, SkyBridge Capital

We would like to provide a special thanks to Professor Jacobides. The report would not have been possible without the insight, thought leadership, and guidance that he contributed. In addition, his willingness to leverage the full array of resources available at the London Business School was invaluable in ensuring that the project had access to the research and documentation tools necessary to complete this report.

Jason Rico Saavedra, Senior Project Manager, Investors Industries, World Economic Forum

Arif M. Naqvi, Founder and Group Chief Executive, The Abraaj Group Professor Dr. Axel A. Weber, Chairman of the Board of Directors, UBS Daniel J. Arbess, Partner and Portfolio Manager, Perella Weinberg Partners Daniel S. Loeb, Chief Executive Officer, Third Point Donald J. Gogel, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Clayton, Dubilier & Rice Hamilton (Tony) James, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Blackstone Group John Zhao, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Hony Capital Paul Fletcher, Senior Partner, Actis

Expert committee Professor Alexander Ljungqvist, Ira Rennert Chair of Finance and Entrepreneurship, New York University’s Stern School of Business David Spreng, Founder and Managing Partner, Crescendo Ventures Douglas J. Elliott, Fellow, Economic Studies, Initiative on Business and Public Policy, Brookings Institution Professor Francesca Cornelli, Professor of Finance, London Business School Professor John Van Reenen, Director, Centre for Economic Performance, Productivity and Innovation Programme, London School of Economics and Political Science Professor Josh Lerner, Jacob H. Schiff Professor of Investment Banking, Harvard Business School Reto Kohler, Head of Strategy, Managing Director, Head of Strategy for Corporate & Investment Banking and Wealth Management, Barclays Takis Georgakopoulos, Managing Director, Chief of Staff, Corporate & Investment Banking, J.P. Morgan 38

Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

To members of the Investors team at the World Economic Forum: Katherine Bleich, Amy Chang, Maha Eltobgy, Peter Gratzke, Alice Heathcote, Tik Keung, Abigail Noble, Megan O’Neill, Dena Stivella.

Production and design team (in alphabetical order) Adelheid Christian-Zechner, Designer Peter Vanham, Senior Media Manager, World Economic Forum Robert Jameson, Editor

Endnotes 1

Beckerman, Josh, “Hertz Backers Plan To Sell More Shares”, Private Equity Beat, 28 March 2011, http://blogs.wsj.com/privateequity/ 2011/03/28/hertz-backers-plan-to-sell-more-shares/.

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3

Jones, Sam, “The Formula that felled Wall St”, Financial Times, 24 April 2009.

Green, Josh, “The State of Venture Investing”, National Venture Capital Association, 24 January 2013, http://www.sdvg.org/wp-content/ uploads/2013/01/SDVG-Jan-24-NVCA-slides.pdf.

National Venture Capital Association and Thomson Reuters, VentureBacked IPO Exit Activity Keeps Momentum With Best Full Year For New Listings Since 2000 [Press release], 7 January 2015.



Salmon, Felix, “Recipe for Disaster: The Formula That Killed Wall Street”, Financial Times, 16 February 2009.

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Preqin data

4

Preqin data

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5

Preqin data

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6

TheCityUK, Hedge Funds, 2013.



Standard & Poor’s, Global Bank Disintermediation Continues As Corporate Borrowing Needs Outpace Banks’ Capacity, 2014.

Forrer, Alison, “New York: The Largest Hedge Fund Hub by Assets under Management – February 2014”, Preqin, 27 February 2014, http://www. preqin.com/blog/101/8451/hedge-fund-assets.

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Preqin, Preqin Special Report: Private Debt, 2014.

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Preqin, 2015 Preqin Global Private Debt Report, 2015.

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Hedge Fund Research data



Abramowicz, Lisa, Miles Weiss and Christine Harper, “Hedge Funds Rush Into Debt Trading With $108 Billion”, Bloomberg Business, 8 May 2013.

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Institutional Investors Alpha data

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Preqin, Investing in Hedge Funds: All About Returns?, 2014.

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McFarland, Brendan, Funded Status of Fortune 1000 Pension Plans Estimated to Have Improved Significantly During 2013, Towers Watson, 2014.

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Preqin, 2015 Global Hedge Fund Report, 2015.

Preqin, Investing in Hedge Funds: All About Returns?, 2014.

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Preqin, Private Investor Outlook: Alternative Assets, H1 2015, 2015. Preqin, 2015 Global Hedge Fund Report, 2015.

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Low, Aaron, “Hedge Funds in the New Normal”, LumenAdvisors, November 2013, http://www.cfasociety.org/beijing/SiteCollectionDocuments/Aaron% 20Low_Hedge%20Fund%20Challenges%20in%20New%20Normal.pdf.

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Moore, David, “Understanding the duration risk in pension plans: The case for LDI”, NEPC, January 2010, http://www.nepc.com/writable/research_ articles/file/2010_01_nepc_the_case_for_ldi.pdf.

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Preqin, Investing in Hedge Funds: All About Returns?, 2014.

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William Blair, Leveraged Finance Market Update, 2015.

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Youngkin, Glenn, “Team Europe – Big Momentum Shift In the “Private Equity World Cup””, The Carlyle Group, March 2014, http://www.evca.eu/content/ microsites/investorsforum2014/t0905-youngkin_results.pdf.

Borda, Joseph, “North America-Based Private Equity Investors’ Appetite for Buyout Funds – January 2015”, Preqin, 14 January 2015, http://www. preqin.com/blog/101/10592/private-equity-buyout-funds.

51 Parker, Lisa, “Investors in Venture Capital Vehicles vs. Investors in Buyout Vehicles – February 2015”, Preqin, 12 February 2015, http://www.preqin. com/blog/101/10785/lps-in-vc-buyout-vehicles. 52

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Bain, Global Private Equity Report 2015, 2015.

Preqin, 2015 Global Hedge Fund Report, 2015.

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EY, EY Global IPO Trends, 2014.

Preqin, Private Investor Outlook: Alternative Assets, H1 2015, 2015.

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EY, Global IPO trends 2011: Private Equity, 2011.

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Preqin, Private Investor Outlook: Alternative Assets, H1 2015, 2015.

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Cambridge Associates, US PE / VC Benchmark Commentary: Quarter Ending September 30, 2014, 2015.

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Preqin, 2015 Global Hedge Fund Report, 2015.

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Towers Watson, Global Pension Assets Study 2015, 2015.

Dechow, Patricia, Richard Sloan and Mark Soliman, “Implied Equity Duration: A New Measure of Equity Risk”, Review of Accounting Studies, vol. 9, no. 2-3, 2004, pp. 197-228.

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Preqin, 2014 Sovereign Wealth Fund Review, 2014.

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Standard & Poor’s, Equity Duration – Updated Duration of the S&P 500, 2005.

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Young, Harry, “Changes in Investors’ Allocations to Private Equity”, Preqin Private Equity Spotlight, 1 March 2014, http://www.preqin.com/docs/ newsletters/pe/Preqin_PESL_Mar_14_Changing_Allocations.pdf.

Statista, Assets of global sovereign wealth funds from December 2009 to December 2014 (in billion U.S. dollars) [Chart], http://www.statista.com/ statistics/276618/volume-of-managed-assets-in-sovereign-wealth-funds worldwide/.

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Durden, Tyler, “Liability-Driven Investing & Equity Duration- Implications and Considerations for Investors”, ZeroHedge, 22 September 2010, http://www. zerohedge.com/article/guest-post-liability-driven-investing-equity-duration implications-and-considerations-invest.

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Durden, Tyler, “Are Equities A Good Inflation Hedge?”, ZeroHedge, 12 December 2012, http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2012-12-12/are equities-good-inflation-hedge.



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Lazard Asset Management, Equity Investments as a Hedge against Inflation, Part 2, 2012.



Mozes, Haim A. and Andrew Fiore, “Private Equity Performance: Better than Than Commonly Believed”, The Journal of Private Equity, vol. 15, no. 3, 2012, pp. 19-32.

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Preqin data

31



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73

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74

Ross Sorkin, Andrew, “Is Private Equity Giving Hertz a Boost?”, New York Times, 23 September 2007.

75

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101 Cartea,



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John, Recommendations for Equitable Allocation of Trades in High Frequency Trading Environments, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, 2014.

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84

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110 Dubin,

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Josh, “Boom and Bust in the Venture Capital Industry and the Impact on Innovation”, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta Economic Review, vol. 2002, No. 4, 2002, pp. 25-39.

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Eileen and Rosemary Batt, A Primer on Private Equity at Work: Management, Employment, and Sustainability, Center for Economic and Policy Research, 2012.

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Davis, Steven, John Haltiwanger, Kyle Handley, Ron Jarmin, Josh Lerner and Javier Miranda “Private Equity, Jobs, and Productivity”, NBER Working Paper No. 19458, September 2013, http://www.nber.org/papers/w19458.

147

Heel, Joachim, and Connor Kehoe, “Why some private equity firms do better than others?”, McKinsey Quarterly, vol. 1, no. 1, 2005, pp. 24-26.

148

Kaplan, Steven, Robert Harris and Tim Jenkinson, “Private Equity: Past, Present and Future”, The University of Chicago Booth School of Business, September 2011, http://faculty.chicagobooth.edu/steven.kaplan/ research/kpe.pdf.

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126

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127

Fichtner, Jan, “Hedge funds: Agents of change for financialization”, Critical Perspectives on International Business, vol. 9, no. 4, 2013, pp. 358-376.

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Lim, Jongha, “The Role of Activist Hedge Funds in Financially Distressed Firms”, Social Science Research Network, 6 September 2013, http://pa pers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2285884.

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Acharya, Viral, Connor Kehoe and Michael Reyner, “The voice of experience: Public versus private equity”, McKinsey Quarterly, vol. 1, no. 1, 2008, pp. 1-7.

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Lerner, Josh, “Boom and Bust in the Venture Capital Industry and the Impact on Innovation”, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta Economic Review, vol. 2002, No. 4, 2002, pp. 25-39. Hellmann, Thomas and Manju Puri, “Venture Capital and the Professional- zation of Start-Up Firms: Empirical Evidence”, Journal of Finance, vol. 57, no. 1, 2002, pp. 169-197.

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Alternative Investments 2020: An Introduction to Alternative Investments

41

The World Economic Forum is an international institution committed to improving the state of the world through public-private cooperation in the spirit of global citizenship. It engages with business, political, academic and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas. Incorporated as a not-for-profit foundation in 1971 and headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, the Forum is independent, impartial and not tied to any interests. It cooperates closely with all leading international organizations.

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