By Roger Aitken — Almost four-fifths (77%) of institutional investors “expect to see” more US and Asia asset managers launch alternative investment funds through UCITS and AIF frameworks in Europe over the next two years, according to a study from Aquila Capital, which was established in 2001 and manages assets today of around €7.1 billion (bn), providing investors with alternative investment solutions in real assets, financial and private markets.
The biggest driver behind the trend was cited by 69% of respondees as a “growing appetite among US and Asian managers” to access new pools of European investor capital in the findings produced by the firm, which ranked fourth among the seventy largest photovoltaic portfolios in Europe.
To date its track record in renewable energy investments amounts to €3bn including wind parks in Germany and Sweden, plus it has forestry investments in Australia, South America and several European countries.
Just over half (53%) believed that interest is growing due to “regulatory constraints” preventing European investors from investing in offshore hedge fund strategies, while around a third thought it resulted from “a greater understanding” among overseas managers of the UCITS framework.
Three-quarters (76%) of investors predict an increase in use of third-party platforms by US and Asian asset managers launching UCITS/ AIF compliant funds. Of these, 72% think that managers would “prefer to partner” with a European asset management platform versus choosing a European investment bank (4%).
Manfred Schraepler, Aquila Capital’s Head of Financial Assets (pictured above), noted the firm had recently witnessed “a significant increase in enquiries from overseas managers looking to leverage Aquila Group’s full service proposition”.
Four in 10 of European investors also viewed the UK’s vote to leave the EU as likely to “further strengthen” Luxemburg’s position as a UCITS jurisdiction (where Aquila has an established UCITS platform) and presence.