It’s that time of year again, when RFA heads to Paris for the annual Hedge Fund Intelligence Summit, to mingle with the great and the good of the alternative investment sector. On Tuesday night, before the two day event began, RFA, Linear Investments, who is a respected prime broker that we’ve worked well with for a number of years, and HedgeGuard, a trading system supplier that we have a collaborative working relationship with, hosted a great evening of wine tasting for 50 clients and prospective clients, at the legendary Caves Legrand Filles et Fils. It was a great start to the event, and set the scene for the trip so far.
Yesterday was the first day of the two-day conference and there was plenty of discussion around opportunities, risks, changes and challenges facing the alternative asset management industry as a whole and lots of deeper investigation into specific investment and business management topics.
Topics for today have been wide ranging, including the inevitable Brexit discussions and how it will affect business, regulations and the markets in general. There are lots of different opinions on the subject, with many UK firms feeling nervous about the impending departure from Europe. Similar discussions have focused on the USA and how the future of trade relations with the UK and Europe might affect the financial markets.
RFA’s George Ralph found it particularly interesting hearing how the leading firms are operating and what their main challenges are. Once again, compliance and cybersecurity are featuring on most firms’ agendas, alongside new financial instruments and innovative trading strategies. George is working hard to talk to as many people as possible about risk management, security and the ways in which technology can underpin the new ways of working. Indeed, it can actually transform the way a firm operates, and many owners are keen to think outside the box and do things differently. It’s not a difficult conversation to have, as most C level executives that we’ve met here have technology and cybersecurity on their agendas, at last.
George also talked, and heard, quite a lot about regulations and how firms are preparing for those, so have been trying to help out with advice where appropriate. We don’t have all the answers, but are well versed in the technology and risk elements of the next big regulations.
Once we have finished our croissants and café crème, we’re heading off to hear today’s predictions from the key players, how to tackle emerging markets and how some firms are working to deliver bigger returns to investors. Bring it on!