SYZ Capital merges multiple offerings to become leading alternatives player

Monday, 04/27/2020

SYZ Capital, the boutique private markets investment firm created in 2018 under the leadership of Marc Syz, has broadened its alternatives offering to create a leading proposition and centre of innovation for both liquid and illiquid strategies.

Monday, 04/27/2020 - 07:38

SYZ Capital aims to become a global centre of alternative excellence by centralising alternative investment expertise from across the SYZ Group – bringing under its umbrella the SYZ Asset Management Alternatives team and the SYZ Private Banking Global Investment Solutions team.

Originally focused on private markets investments, including direct private equity, thematic and multi-manager programs, SYZ Capital was created to offer sophisticated investors, families and entrepreneurs the ability to co-invest alongside the Syz family in opportunities  that were traditionally only accessible to institutional investors.

Combining expertise

In order to meet ever evolving investor requirements, and take advantage of opportunities available in global markets, SYZ Capital will now be incorporating the liquid alternative expertise and hedge fund solutions previously available under SYZ Private Banking and SYZ Asset Management  and will represent a total of CHF 1 billion AuM.

Sherban Tautu, Head of Global Investment Solutions (GIS) along with his discretionary and advisory alternative account teams, previously under SYZ Private Banking, will move across to SYZ Capital. Continuity will be ensured across client portfolios, which will be managed by the same expert team.

Cédric Vuignier, responsible for alternative research and investments at SYZ Asset Management, and his team are also joining SYZ Capital where they will continue to manage the OYSTER Alternative Uncorrelated fund and the OYSTER Alternative Multi Strategy fund, as well as a white label UCITS Alternative offering.

The expansion recognises the increasing appetite for alternative investments and changing investment dynamics. Eric Syz, CEO of SYZ Group, says: “While long-only strategies are increasingly commoditized, alternative investments represent the future for active managers”. Over the last few years, investors like ourselves have increasingly been seeking sources of diversification, away from traditional equities and bonds, as the markets exhibited late-cycle dynamics. The acute market volatility we are witnessing as a result of the Coronavirus crisis will elevate the appeal of these strategies even further.”

“The pandemic is a black swan event, which has abruptly brought an end to market directionality. The resurgence of volatility will require investors to adopt stronger risk mitigation strategies, downside protection and drive demand for diversification through alternative assets. We believe investors should have 20-30% of their portfolio exposed to alternatives. We are now fully equipped to help investors  achieve this target across the liquidity spectrum over the years to come.”

Synergistic impact

Moreover, the Group believes the developed world was headed for a Japan-style scenario of lower growth for longer, prompting many investors to broaden their search for alternative sources of strong risk-adjusted returns.

Marc Syz, CEO of SYZ Capital, says: “The Syz family has been investing in alternatives for the past 35 years; alternatives are a part of our DNA. We aim to help democratise the access and deliver the benefits of alternatives to a much broader investor universe – notably clients, who share the Group’s values and entrepreneurial spirit.  Merging our liquid and illiquid offerings will enable our clients to access and benefit from a range of attractive investment solutions alongside our family. Alternatives will help investors navigate this difficult market environment, while uncovering uncorrelated sources of consistent alpha. Liquid alternatives, such as hedge funds, are recognised for their reduced  correlation to traditional asset classes, which allow them to generate attractive returns across market cycles with low levels of volatility. Through our longstanding relationships and network, we are able to source unique return enhancing opportunities in this space.”

“On the illiquid side, our expertise allows us to identify situations where outsized risk-adjusted returns can be generated due to structural imbalances, information edge or unique market access. We actively allocate to a broad range of best-in-class private equity strategies, special situations and uncorrelated strategies. By grouping both teams under one distinct investment company, SYZ Capital, we will be able to generate more quality investment ideas and portfolio management options.”

“As demand for alternatives grows, we want to stay ahead of the game. Bringing liquid and illiquid investment knowhow and expertise into one centre for excellence will allow the SYZ Group to keep innovating and providing curated investment solutions over the coming decade.”