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?
Apex Fund Services -- one of the world's largest independent fund administration companies with more than $20 billion of assets under administration -- recently opened a new office in
"And more recently, in the past year or so, having a bigger move of managers from Latin America coming into the area and setting up shop and having a presence there, either to attract US investors to invest in Latin America, or bring Latin American investors into the US to take advantage of the US markets," he said. "After seeing that spike, we thought it was only a natural fit to place an office there and serve our clients in the south, whether it's the Carolinas,
Thalius Hecksher, Global Head of Business Development at Apex Fund Services, believes that the trend will continue and more hedge fund managers will move to
"Already we are seeing a lot of momentum behind what
Apex was particularly attracted to the "huge amount of economic development" going on in
Hecksher said that one of the key drivers for Apex is that it functions on a push-and-pull philosophy where its clients "pull us into a territory and we'll push ourselves in."
"Over the last 18 to 20 months, we've noticed that we have a couple clients there, and Vince took the view that we could better serve them more locally," Hecksher explained. "As a result of that, we have also [gotten some managers on board] from
After conducting a number of business trips to Latin America, Hecksher learned that many Latin American hedge fund managers see
But it's not just the worldwide gateway that attracts hedge fund managers. "There are also very low taxes here in
"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
Looking ahead, Sarullo thinks that the
"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.'"