July 27, 2014
- J.P. Morgan, Merrill Lynch, and Credit Suisse First Boston lead initiative as investors and strategic partners
- Support indicative of leading financial institutions' readiness for real time, independently verified hedge fund data
New York - PlusFunds.com, the leading independent hedge fund service platform, today announced the completion of its first institutional round of financing, a $42 million equity Private placement led by LabMorgan, J.P. Morgan's e-finance unit; Merrill Lynch; and Credit Suisse First Boston (CSFB). The addition of these strategic investors provides a perfect complement to the companies currently working with PlusFunds.com, including Standard & Poor's and the Bermuda Stock Exchange (BSX). Built to improve and standardise the information flow from hedge funds to their investors, PlusFunds.com is the only platform that will provide real time, tick-by-tick net asset values of hedge fund shares and, in co-operation with Standard & Poor's, daily risk analysis on hedge funds. While there are several web-sites that aggregate manager-supplied performance information on hedge funds on a monthly basis, PlusFunds.com is the only platform that independently calculates the performance and risk data that appears on its website. In addition, PlusFunds.com has entered into an exclusive joint venture with the BSX whereby the hedge funds that use the PlusFunds.com platform will be listed and may be traded by non-US investors on the ESX.
Noted Christopher Sugrue, CEO and co-Chairman of PlusFunds.com, "This financing represents an additional vote of confidence from the world's top ranking financial institutions. The ability of PlusFunds.com to assemble such an unprecedented group of strategic partners highlights the market demand for real time, independently verified hedge fund data and the unique position of PlusFunds.com as the only company that can provide such a sophisticated service."
J.P. Morgan, Merrill Lynch, and CSFB, along with others, intend to develop a variety of products based upon the hedge funds that participate on the PlusFunds.com platform. Benjamin Cohen, a Managing Director with CSFB, noted, "The hedge fund data provided by PlusFunds.com will increase transparency and liquidity in the hedge fund market and will consequently contribute to the growth of the hedge fund industry." It is anticipated that financial institutions will begin to provide equity style research reports on hedge funds participating on the PlusFunds.com platform and create and distribute fund of funds, structured products and index products based on hedge funds that participate on the platform. Noted Carty Chock, a Vice President with LabMorgan, "PlusFunds.com sets the stage for better risk management and provides a useful tool for hedge funds and their investors."
In addition to the three lead investors, several other investment firms participated in the financing, including Wachovia Capital Associates, Gryphon Investments, Koch Ventures, and SMS Securities. PlusFunds.com will use the $42 million investment to build out and launch the platform, carry out its marketing plan, and establish PlusFunds.com as the world's premier hedge fund service platform. Diego Winegardner, co-Chairman and co-founder of PlusFunds.com, added, "This round of financing provides PlusFunds.com with the economic resources necessary to maintain its technological lead and continue to add talent to an already impressive team of professionals."
PlusFunds.com is the world's leading independent hedge fund service platform with offices in New York and London. It was created in 1998 in co-operation with Standard & Poor's, Ernst & Young, Advent Software, Inc. (Nasdaq: ADVS), RiskMetrics Group, and the Bermuda Stock Exchange (BSX) to serve three major functions: (1) Provide real time, tick-by-tick NAVs (Net Asset Values) of hedge fund shares; (2) Provide a variety of daily risk measures, including VARs (Value at Risk), historical portfolio shocks and concentration analysis of hedge funds; and (3) Allow for the creation of a secondary market for non-US investors that trades exclusively on the BSX.
PlusFunds.com sets the stage for the hedge fund industry's reinvention and growth. The platform's ability to provide Benign Transparency(SM), whereby valuation and risk information is disclosed without revealing security-level information, investors can know more about hedge funds without compromising the positions of the hedge fund managers. The site intends to operate in ten languages (Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish) and access is free of charge, however, it is restricted to accredited US and sophisticated non-US investors. To date, the site has registered over 2,500 users from around the world. Numerous hedge funds have chosen to participate in the platform, which is expected to go "live" in the Fall. It is anticipated that the services offered by PlusFunds.com will create greater transparency and liquidity in the hedge fund industry, which the company believes will increase investor participation and thereby contribute to the growth of the hedge fund industry.