Emilio Veiga Gil, EVP and CMO, FlexFundsEmilio Veiga Gil, EVP and CMO
The last decade witnessed the remarkable expansion of global asset management. Now, the boom years show signs of exhaustion as asset management reaches an inflection point, given the structural changes in the financial services industry. This includes the shift of responsibility for long-term savings to individuals, the growing emphasis on non-financial outcomes, the tendency for capital to flow toward more cost-effective products and strategies, and the impact of technology on investment management.

In this context, it’s true to say that Covid-19 has not only disrupted the financial services industry but also accentuated its weaknesses, accelerated its tectonic shifts, and created several new problems.

With investor demand becoming increasingly complex and companies facing squeezed margins, asset management firms must make significant changes to their strategies and business models to succeed in today’s fluid and challenging environment. What they need is to use the Covid-19 disruptions as a springboard to lasting success by considering the radical but plausible scenarios, identifying their strategic implications, and planning accordingly.

This is where FlexFunds makes an impact. FlexFunds partners with global asset managers to provide administration services for exchange-traded products (ETPs) and corporate business services. The company sets up independent investment vehicles similar to funds for strategy management and global distribution to non-U.S. end-investors. This is done through an asset securitization program that creates ETPs, what the company calls a Flex, and includes services such as exchange listing, fund accounting, back-office services, and NAV calculation.

“Not long ago, only a few large banks had the ability to structure a global note through an asset securitization program,” says Emilio Veiga Gil, EVP and CMO of FlexFunds. “We have disrupted the status quo by democratizing access to efficient investment vehicles.” Today, asset managers, investment advisors, portfolio managers, hedge funds, broker-dealers, and family offices can collaborate with FlexFunds to structure ETF-like investment vehicles and raise capital internationally.

FlexFunds mitigates the most common challenges its clients face across various segments and geographies. On the cost side, the company sets up an investment vehicle for less than half the cost of alternatives in the market. For instance, clients can save up to 60-percent of ongoing maintenance costs with FlexFunds ETPs over traditional investment funds, such as Caribbean and Luxembourg.

While structuring investment funds can be a tedious and lengthy process, taking more than six months to make it to market, companies can set up and launch FlexFunds ETPs in six to eight weeks. In addition, its ETPs are flexible, as multiple types of assets (listed and alternative investments) can be securitized under customized terms.
FlexFunds provides both turnkey and custom-built solutions that make the setup and launching of ETPs, fund accounting, and corporate administration services simple for its customers. Offerings can address current and future market requirements to support growth plans with regulated or unregulated programs and white label capabilities. Through its innovative FinTech platform, FlexFunds automates the calculation of each ETP’s price (net asset value) and distributes it through worldwide leading price disseminators, such as Reuters and Six Financial. The company provides an international securities identification number (ISIN) and Bloomberg listing, facilitating its customers’ global capital-raising process. Further, FlexFunds works with selected service providers, such as BNY Mellon, Intertrust Group, APEX, Reuters, and Bloomberg, to facilitate distribution and access to non-U.S. investors in global capital.

We have disrupted the status quo by democratizing access to efficient investment vehicles

FlexFunds’ portfolio of services and solutions has been instrumental in helping several Latin American investors and asset managers attain the desired level of outcomes. In one instance, LifeInvest, a regulated asset manager with over 25 years of experience and more than 200 clients in Latin America, issued three ETPs with FlexFunds. Its offerings provided LifeInvest with agile and efficient tools to distribute their investment strategies in international private banking channels. LifeInvest created a centralized management structure with global custody for half the cost of their traditional funds. As a result, the client’s investors were able to access products from their brokerage accounts and reach new investors without placing an additional burden on their team.

In the alternative asset world, FlexFunds helped Participant Capital, the equity arm of a leading Florida-based real estate and development firm, Royal Palm Companies, established in the 1970s. Its portfolio has generated more than 6,000 units across mixed-use developments, multifamily residences, and hospitality, with managed and completed project assets totaling more than $3.5 billion. In the case of Participant Capital, FlexFunds ETPs were an important investment vehicle utilized to access its international investor base. This solution allowed Participant Capital to expand its distribution capacity to various financial institutions, private banking, and broker-dealers.

With more than $1.5 billion under administration and more than 200 clients in America, Asia, and Europe is a success story that propelled FlexFunds to be a world reference in the setup and administration of customized investment vehicles. Substantiating the company’s rapid growth is its team of experts in financial services with a total of more than 30 years of international experience. They are committed to providing high-quality, client-centered services backed by internationally-renowned institutions.

“FlexFunds was founded in 2011 with the mission to provide unique and innovative solutions that facilitate the distribution and growth of investment products for asset managers,” says Veiga Gil. “The aim is to continue on this path and keep growing as a best-in-class service provider for the administration of securitized assets.”