Our News Reel

Operational due diligence review - is your fund prepared

Operational Due Diligence (ODD) isn't new. It is a process that came about from numerous investment management firm failures beginning in 2002 with Beacon Hill Capital.

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Sanne strengthens North America Hedge business with director appointment

Sanne, an award-winning global provider of alternative asset and corporate business services, has appointed Adrian Bedoya as Director, Hedge – North America.  

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Sanne bolsters North American team and appoints new Business Development Director

Sanne has appointed Darrell Pisarra to the role of Director, Business Development – North America.

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Operational due diligence review - is your fund prepared

Operational Due Diligence (ODD) isn't new. It is a process that came about from numerous investment management firm failures beginning in 2002 with Beacon Hill Capital.

Sanne strengthens North America Hedge business with director appointment

Sanne, an award-winning global provider of alternative asset and corporate business services, has appointed Adrian Bedoya as Director, Hedge – North America.  

Sanne bolsters North American team and appoints new Business Development Director

Sanne has appointed Darrell Pisarra to the role of Director, Business Development – North America.

How Private Equity can make ESG a competitive advantage

Environmental, social and governance (ESG) practices continue to be a hot topic in private equity. As momentum around ESG increases, leading PE firms are planning, implementing, and reporting the impacts of ESG strategies.

Webinar: The evolving landscape of loan administration in a time of change

Our panel of experts reflects on loan servicing trends this year and makes predictions for 2022. Topics of discussion included: the evolving role of data transparency and technology; the importance of engaging expertise; and, the transition away from LIBOR.  

The hamster wheel - the new norm, or is it?

Alarm clock. Check emails. Quick workout. Check emails. Give kids breakfast. Take a MS Teams video call with your Asia colleague. Check emails. Get kids ready for their school day. Grab a banana. It just turned 7 a.m. You're exhausted, and the workday has yet to begin officially.

Regulatory Update: SEC Turns Focus to Digital Assets

In an August 3, 2021, speech at the Aspen Security Forum, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chair Gary Gensler urged lawmakers to grant him authority to oversee cryptocurrency trading. 

Regulatory Update: SEC Raises Qualified Client Thresholds

Effective August 16, 2021, there will be new thresholds for determining whether an investor of a registered investment adviser is a “qualified client” under Rule 205-3 of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 and thus can be charged incentive compensation (i.e., performance fees, allocations, or other forms of carry).

Stacey Relton Discusses Fund Administration M&A Trends with Alternatives Watch

As the fund services space becomes more competitive, fund administrators are looking to add other services to complement the traditional core accounting products, such as regulatory compliance and data analytics.

Special Purpose Vehicles in the Alternative Investments Industry – Overview and Considerations

Special Purpose Vehicles have become a popular investment structure in today’s alternative investment universe. Fund managers frequently form SPVs for the predefined purpose of holding a single investment for a finite period of time. There are many reasons why a manager may choose to establish a Special Purpose Vehicle, and there are specific considerations to be made before making the decision.

Webinar: Launching an Investment Fund Series – Part Two

In Part Two of our Launching an Investment Fund Webinar Series, panelists from Capstone Partners, LP and Sanne discussed fundraising best practices and complying with U.S. and foreign regulations. 

Webinar: Launching an Investment Fund Series – Part One

We gathered a panel of industry experts to provide their insight into how fund managers can navigate the complexities of launching a fund in Part One of a two-part webinar series.

STRAIT University: Investing in the Long-Term Success of Our Team

STRAIT laid the foundation of its training program with the words of Benjamin Franklin in mind, “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” Our emphasis on continuous learning has helped us train our team efficiently, elevating their skills and knowledge base, and providing them with the tools necessary to progress through their careers and provide excellent service to our diverse client base.

STRAIT enters into an agreement with Sanne - an award winning and leading global provider of alternative asset and corporate services

STRAIT, a highly successful Dallas based fund solutions company for alternative investment firms, has entered into an agreement with Sanne Group plc (“Sanne”) whereby Sanne will acquire STRAIT.

Regulatory Update: 2021 SEC Exam Priorities - Three Focus Priorities for Private Fund Advisers

The Securities and Exchange Commission recently announced its 2021 examination priorities, providing a glimpse into the Biden administration’s overall priorities for registered investment firms. The exam priorities provide registered investment advisers the opportunity to amend their compliance programs accordingly.

Launching a Private Equity Fund

When launching a first-time fund, it's easy to get preoccupied with plans to win lucrative deals. Instead, first-time fund managers need to start with a focus on how to win investor confidence in a fiercely competitive environment.

Webinar: Launching an Investment Fund

In our most recent webinar, we assembled a panel of experts to share their best advice for launching an investment fund. 

The Rising Importance of Outsourcing in Private Equity

In a recent article published in Middle Market Growth Magazine, Managing Partner of STRAIT, Stacey Relton discusses the rising importance of outsourcing in middle-market private equity.

Planning an Efficient Fund Wind Down: Take These Steps to Reduce Risks

For an effective fund wind down, it’s critical to carefully manage asset liquidations and transfers, retain key personnel and minimize expenses. To help fund managers navigate this complex process, we created the following guide with important steps to maximize investors’ capital and mitigate risks during a fund wind down.

Understanding the Ins and Outs of the New Investment Adviser Advertising Rules: Q&A with Daryoush Niknejad, General Counsel and Director at STRAIT

In a recent STRAIT Compliance roundtable discussion, STRAIT General Counsel and Director Daryoush Niknejad provided fund managers with an overview of the new Advertising Rules and 506(c) general solicitation.

We spoke with Daryoush to address common questions from fund managers and understand what action needs to be taken to comply with the updated rules.

How to Prepare for a Smooth Audit: Q&A with Zain Lalani, Director at STRAIT

Audit reports offer enormous value, with critical information for investors and valuable insights for operational improvements. However, those benefits aren’t necessarily top-of-mind for fund managers when they think about audit preparation. Instead, audits can feel overwhelming or tedious.

STRAIT Bolsters Institutional Platform with PFA Solutions FirmView

STRAIT Fund Services announced that it, in conjunction with PFA Solutions, is developing STRAITView, a manager-facing dashboard solution built on the PFA Solutions FirmView® platform. PFA Solutions is a leading provider of alternative investment technology and services that help investment managers aggregate and analyze investment data through the PFA Solutions FirmView® product suite.

STRAIT Ranked #20 in LSU 100 2020 List

For the third consecutive year, STRAIT is honored to be included in the LSU 100 list of the Fastest Growing Tiger Businesses. This year, STRAIT is ranked 20 out of 100 high performing companies

STRAIT Announces Technology Suite Enhancement with Adoption of Wrike Project Management Software

Strait Fund Services, a fund solutions company providing a full range of services for hedge funds, private equity funds, family offices, and other asset management firms, has incorporated into its best-in-class software suite Wrike’s Professional Services cloud-based project management and collaboration enterprise solution.

Stacey Relton Featured in The Fort Podcast

STRAIT Fund Services Managing Partner, Stacey Relton, sat down with Chris Powers, the host of The Fort podcast, to discuss a number of topics including fund administration, firm culture, and leading teams during uncertain times.

Regulatory Update: SEC – Unregistered Broker-Dealer? No Problem!...Sometimes

For around 80 years, it has been axiomatic that it is forbidden to pay anyone not registered as a broker-dealer transaction fees for soliciting investors.  On October 7, 2020, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission voted to upend that history and permit such payments to so-called “finders”.

 

Regulatory Update: OFAC - A Cyber Attack Can Put You Between a Rock and a Hard Place

On October 1, 2020, the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Control (“OFAC”) issued an advisory highlighting the risk of violating OFAC sanctions for payments related to “ransomware”. 

 

STRAIT Compliance Brief: Global Privacy Legislation - Private Fund Advisers and Schrems II

The E.U. has been the most active financial regulator in the world over the last several years, implementing impactful privacy regulations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), among others. U.S. investment advisers looking to grow their operations globally will need to place a higher regard on E.U. regulations in the near-term. Read the STRAIT Compliance Brief for an in-depth review of E.U. regulations and what they could mean for U.S. investment advisers.

 

Take These Steps to Help Your Portfolio Companies Adapt During Uncertain Times

Private equity firms understand the best crisis remedy comes from planning and implementing a comprehensive response, through effective communication with LPs and portfolio company leadership. Read on to discover what specific steps firms can take to make portfolio companies more resilient amid widespread uncertainty.

Regulatory Update: SEC Expands Definitions of Accredited Investors and Qualified Institutional Buyers

Last week, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) expanded the definitions of “Accredited Investor” and “Qualified Institutional Buyers,” which could potentially point to a bigger pool of investors for fund managers next capital raise.

Fee Structure Trends: How Hedge Funds Use Flexibility to Attract Investors

At STRAIT, we've observed fund managers responding to industry dynamics with more flexibility in fee arrangements. They recognize that investors are looking for better value in the form of fee models that align with their interests. Read on to discover the trends we see as investment managers adapt their fee structures to attract investor capital.

Laura Simms Featured in M&A Masters Podcast

Patrick Stroth, the facilitator of M&A Masters podcasts, speaks with STRAIT's Business Development team member, Laura Simms, on what to expect in M&A post-COVID-19.

Launching a Hedge Fund

Launching a hedge fund requires more than access to capital investment and portfolio management skills. It requires careful planning to ensure there is a robust structural and operational foundation to set the firm up for success. There are no shortcuts to creating an effective management structure, but once completed, it can provide enormous value for mitigating risk and protecting investors.

STRAIT and Smonik Systems Announce Strategic Technology Partnership

Smonik Systems, a data management and reconciliation software and services provider has announced a partnership with STRAIT Fund Services.

Powerful Ways to Reinforce Investor Trust in a Crisis

In this pandemic, and in any crisis, some events are beyond our control. Your firm can’t quell the economic turmoil. But it can control something essential: the message to investors. To that end, investment managers can take important steps to strengthen relationships now and prepare for future crises. In this blog post, we examine ways your firm can transform this time of profound uncertainty into a powerful opportunity to reinforce trust. 

STRAIT Expands Presence into Houston With Key Compliance Hire

STRAIT announces the expansion of the firm's presence with the addition of a strategic hire in Houston, Texas.

Why Investment Managers Should Keep Fundraising

Much has changed with the global economy this year. But one thing that’s stayed constant is the need to strengthen investor relationships through consistent, meaningful communication. Continue reading for practical tips on how to continually position your firm as a flexible, transparent, and reliable partner.

Regulatory Update: PPP Loans

New Deadline of May 14 to Repay Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loans for SBA “Good Faith” Certification

STRAIT Regulatory Update

STRAIT’s compliance team has been tracking fast moving regulatory events in light of COVID-19.  Relevant regulatory actions are summarized in the STRAIT Regulatory Update.
 

RIA CCO's – Some Questions to Ask and Answer in Light of COVID-19

COVID-19 has already had a significant impact on the investment advisory community and its service providers.  STRAIT, a provider of regulatory compliance, fund administration, investor services, and management company services has begun communicating with the community its response to developments.  These events also potentially present compliance challenges that must be promptly addressed.  A framework of how to think about these issues is set forth below.

STRAIT COVID-19 Notification to Clients

STRAIT is closely monitoring the information provided by the CDC regarding COVID-19. Currently, our office is open and we are conducting business as usual.  Should the situation become more serious, we are prepared to initiate actions in line with our disaster recovery plan to keep our team members safe while avoiding any disruption in deliverables or communication with our clients.

STRAIT Welcomes New Managing Director and Head of Business Development

STRAIT adds Industry Veteran James Davis to focus on Growth and Operational Scale

 

2020 EXAMINATION PRIORITIES

The SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (“OCIE”) has announced its examination priorities for 2020. STRAIT's General Counsel provides a summary of those priorities most relevant to STRAIT’s private fund adviser clients.

2019 Dallas 100 Entrepreneur Award

STRAIT received the Dallas 100 Entreprenuer Award for the second year in a row. SMU's Caruth Institute for Entrepreneurship awards this honor to the top 100 privately-held fastest growing companies in North Texas.

The National Association of Investment Companies (NAIC) Awards STRAIT the 2019 Chairman’s Award for Leadership

The Chairman’s Award for Leadership is one of the highest honors the NAIC bestows. It recognizes an individual or organization who has exhibited outstanding, innovative and visionary leadership while demonstrating an understanding of the value of diversity in the investment community. 

Operational Due Diligence Expectations for Emerging Managers

Earlier this year STRAIT attended the 2019 Texas Emerging Manager Conference in Austin, TX hosted by the Teachers Retirement System of Texas.  One of the focus panels discussed what emerging managers could expect from operational due diligence by institutional investors and how to prepare.  STRAIT is dedicated to helping emerging managers develop and execute on institutional level processes. 

STRAIT sponsors the 10th Annual SALT Conference

STRAIT is proud to sponsor the 10th Annual SALT Conference. The event will take place in Las Vegas, May 7-10, 2019. SALT is a global thought leadership forum devoted to unlocking growth opportunities in the fields of finance, economics, entrepreneurship, public policy, technology and philanthropy. SALT brings together approximately 2,000 of the world’s foremost investors, policy experts, politicians and business leaders for four days of networking, entertainment and idea sharing.

STRAIT is proud to be a presenting sponsor for the Next Gen Symposia

During the recent NAIC Next Gen symposium in Washington, DC on April 26, STRAIT presented on Building Your Back Office – How the right infrastructure can drive returns while minimizing risks. STRAIT representatives Shana C. Johnson, Daryoush Niknejad, Zain Lalani, and Shane Mpala held interactive sessions walking attendees through the processes, internal controls, and considerations critical to launching a new firm and the risks to be mindful of post launch.

The Impact of the Women of STRAIT

In reflecting on my last few years at STRAIT, I’ve had the privilege of observing firsthand the powerful impact that women can have on a firm. Each female that we’ve hired and put into a position of leadership has served to make our team stronger, more successful, and better rounded.

Women of STRAIT: Francesca Liu

When I joined STRAIT in October 2017, there were only five females in the firm. This did not surprise me as it is common in financial services. It is also industry standard that the higher the rank is, the fewer women you will find owning these roles.  However, this unbalanced gender ratio did not remain for long. As STRAIT grew, the firm hired women across all different levels and service lines. The female population has grown rapidly by 500% since I joined the firm a year and half ago. Not only has the female population grown in the firm, but also the gender diversity has balanced across all levels, from staff to leadership.

Women of STRAIT: Kris McGahey

I had the privilege of attending the Dallas Business Journal’s Bizwomen Mentoring Monday last week, where I was able to meet with some of the most influential women in the Dallas community...When asked [the menor] what was the single most contributing factor that got her where she is today she replied with “Relationships.”  I couldn’t help but think of STRAIT’s company value, “Relationships Matter.” It doesn’t matter how smart you are or how long your resume is, but whether you took the time to build relationships with others. Did you treat others well along the way? Skills can be taught, but relationships are built. Slow down and take the time to build some.

STRAIT Compliance Control Framework

STRAIT has adopted a “control framework” model for its fully outsourced regulatory compliance offering.  Already in common use for public company financial controls and among European regulated entities to meet compliance goals, STRAIT’s Control Framework is a unique application of this comprehensive and transparent model to U.S. based investment advisers’ compliance needs. 

STRAIT TESTIMONIAL: SHANA JOHNSON, YEAR END REFLECTION

It’s been said “Find something you love to do and you’ll never work a day in your life.” One of the biggest lessons I learned in 2018 is to find a TEAM you love to work with, and you’ll never work a day in your life.

STRAIT testimonial: Shane Mpala

Over the past month, STRAIT partnered with Junior Achievement to serve area youth in the North Texas community. Senior Accountant Shane Mpala shares his experience, “I count myself lucky to have participated in educational systems in three different countries during my scholarly times, but nothing could have prepared me for the experience I had volunteering with Junior Achievement."

How you can ensure that your firm is prepared for your 2019 ADV Renewal

On November 12, investment advisers likely received an email from FINRA regarding the IARD system. The IARD system is the online gateway for advisor regulatory filings, and this email should serve as an early reminder that year-end filing requirements, such as the Form ADV, are on the horizon.  Are you prepared? STRAIT is here to take care of all your compliance needs.

Top 100 Fastest Growing Firm in DFW

STRAIT is one of the fastest-growing entrepreneurial companies in the Dallas area, according to the SMU Cox School of Business’s Caruth Institute for Entrepreneurship.

STRAIT Commits to Conscious Capitalism

Aligning with our values of ethics above all else and working to better our community, STRAIT is participating in the Conscious Capitalism movement. Conscious Capitalism creates a world in which business is both practiced and perceived as the greatest force for good.

2018 Women In Business Honoree

Our very own Stacey Relton, has been chosen as one of Dallas Business Journal's 2018 Women in Business Honorees!

New Corporate Headquarters Grand Opening

STRAIT is excited to announce our move to a new corporate headquarters in Dallas, TX. After outgrowing our previous offices at Preston Center, it was time to design a working environment that aligned more directly with our company values and unique culture...On May 17th, we held our Grand Opening, welcoming clients, friends of the firm and members of the alternative investment industry to meet the Stait team, see our offices and learn why we are one of the most respected and fastest growing services firms in the industry.