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Will More Hedge Funds Move to Florida?


Florida offers hedge funds lower taxes and easier access to private Latin American banks, so will more of them move to the Sunshine State?

"Miami is actually well-positioned for Europe as a very strong hub," he added. "So through Miami, you pretty much get to North America, South America, Asia to a certain extend, and also back to Europe. Thus, it made absolute sense for us to come to Miami."

But it's not just the worldwide gateway that attracts hedge fund managers. "There are also very low taxes here in Florida," said Hecksher. "So we see these as incentives for managers to relocate their business to Florida. We see the opportunity and have decided to take an early adopter's approach in Miami and demonstrate that we have taken the step to serve this market."

"Also, in the past couple years, we have been working with the Florida Alternative Investment Association," Sarullo added. "We found that the association, plus the state, has been making a conscious effort to attract investment managers to the area, assisting them in making that move. One of the things that I kept on hearing was that the need to have an adequate supply of service providers who specialize in the industry in the area in order to serve these managers. There are a limited number of service providers in Florida that fill that need."

Looking ahead, Sarullo thinks that the Florida lifestyle could inspire the formation of new funds.

"I think you might see as a byproduct of the retirement side -- people going there later in life -- is that you're gonna find a lot of asset managers that have been working in organizations for a long time," said Sarullo. "[They] decide, 'Well, I'm gonna cut back and retire or cut back my schedule,' and go down there. Being the personality and nature of the people that they are, they're gonna say, 'You know what, I'm bored. I want to do something. I'm gonna go back to what I do and set up a small fund here.'"

"I imagine Miami will work as a launching pad for our next emerging market when we choose to launch another office," Hecksher added. "It will, more than likely, be somewhere in the Latin American market. So it works for us as a very good hub and a very good foundation for managers."

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