Client profile:

  • U.S. insurance company with $150B in assets
  • Strong in-house investment management team manages 90% of its assets
  • Outsources 10% of its asset management

Client requirements:

  • Unique loan origination opportunities
  • Short-duration portfolio (1-3 years) with attractive yields relative to public markets
  • U.S. loans focused, explore global opportunities over time
  • Target return of floating reference rate +140 bps net return
  • Attractive after-fees return
  • Investment grade loans

What was the client looking for?

1. Increased diversification

The client’s investment goal was to find a way to increase yield but still invest in shorter-dated assets. The organization has its own in-house asset management capabilities, so we needed to deliver a truly differentiated approach to portfolio diversification.

2. Enhanced yield over cash

We met with the prospective client to propose a fund-financing loans portfolio, participating in short-duration credit line facilities to private-market funds. The loans are backed by institutional limited partner (LP) commitments to the funds, typically pension plans, insurance companies and sovereign wealth funds. The credit lines tend to be at the early stages of the fund’s life. The duration of these loans generally ranges between 12 and 36 months. Our initial proposal included a portfolio of loans that would yield approximately a reference rate +140 bps target net returns with a duration profile of less than two years.

The client was willing, within reason, to extend maturity to achieve the net return objective. We worked closely with the client from an early stage to try to create an optimal balance between risk, return, and liquidity. We considered all of the loan options available within the investment universe and modeled multiple portfolios that could potentially provide a satisfactory solution.

Not only were we able to meet the client’s yield goal of reference +140 bps net returns, but we were also able to exceed it. As of March 31, 2022, we were able to generate reference rate +256 bps net returns.

3. Bespoke investment solution

During the process, we took a holistic view of fund financing to meet the client’s yield target. This led us to consider both early LP credit facilities and later-stage facilities that are backed by the underlying assets of borrowing private equity funds. In collaboration with the client investment team, we concluded that employing fund-financing loans in both the short and intermediate duration ranges could achieve a desirable solution, maintaining appropriate liquidity and risk profiles.

4. Rapid capital deployment

The solution was to create a profile comprised entirely of LP-backed credit-line loans. Given deal flow and origination capabilities, this allocation allowed us to deploy $400 million in less than nine months. From there, the client, satisfied with strong performance and speed of allocation, increased its allocation to $1.5 billion within 12 months after the mandate went live.

A unique solution with room to grow

As the fund-financing market grows, we see a broader array of yield profiles and diverse investment characteristics that allow institutional clients to tailor solutions to their individual risk and return requirements.

At abrdn we provide truly unique fund-financing investment solutions for our clients. Few other asset managers have the capability to provide such diversified exposure and speed of deployment.


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Case study presented for illustrative purposes only. There is no guarantee your portfolio will contain the same securities. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Target returns are offered as opinion and are not referenced to past performance. Target returns are not guaranteed and actual events or results may differ materially.

Important: The above is strictly for private circulation and information purposes only and should not be considered as an offer, or solicitation, to deal in any of the investments mentioned herein. abrdn, plc (“abrdn”) does not warrant the accuracy, adequacy or completeness of the information and materials contained in this document and expressly disclaims liability for errors or omissions in such information and materials. Past performance is not necessarily a guide to the future. Any research or analysis used in the preparation of this document has been procured by abrdn or its affiliates for their own use and may have been acted on for their own purpose. The results thus obtained are made available only coincidentally and the information is not guaranteed as to its accuracy. Some of the information in this document may contain projections or other forward looking statements regarding future events or future financial performance of countries, markets or companies. These statements are only predictions and actual events or results may differ materially. The reader must make his/her own assessment of the relevance, accuracy and adequacy of the information contained in this document and make such independent investigations, as he/she may consider necessary or appropriate for the purpose of such assessment. Any opinion or estimate contained in this document is made on a general basis and is not to be relied on by the reader as advice. Neither abrdn nor any of its agents have given any consideration to nor have they made any investigation of the investment objectives, financial situation or particular need of the reader, any specific person or group of persons. Accordingly, no warranty whatsoever is given and no liability whatsoever is accepted for any loss arising whether directly or indirectly as a result of the reader, any person or group of persons acting on any information, opinion or estimate contained in this document. The information herein including any expressions of opinion or forecast have been obtained from or is based upon sources believed by abrdn to be reliable but is not guaranteed as to accuracy or completeness. The information is given without obligation and on the understanding that any person who acts upon it or otherwise changes his position in reliance there on does so entirely at his or her own risk. abrdn reserves the right to make changes and corrections to its opinions expressed in this document at any time, without notice. Any unauthorized disclosure, use or dissemination, either whole or partial, of this document is prohibited and this document is not to be reproduced, copied, made available to others.

Alternative investments involve specific risks that may be greater than those associated with traditional investments; are not suitable for all clients; and intended for experienced and sophisticated investors who meet specific suitability requirements and are willing to bear the high economic risks of the investment. Investments of this type may engage in speculative investment practices; carry additional risk of loss, including possibility of partial or total loss of invested capital, due to the nature and volatility of the underlying investments; and are generally considered to be illiquid due to restrictive repurchase procedures. These investments may also involve different regulatory and reporting requirements, complex tax structures, and delays in distributing important tax information.

Returns are presented gross of management fees and include the reinvestment of all income. Actual returns will be reduced by investment advisory fees and other expenses that may be incurred in the management of the account. A fee schedule is an integral part of a complete presentation and is described in Part II of the firm’s ADV, which is available upon request. The collection of fees produces a compounding effect on the total rate of return net of management fees. As an example, the effect of investment management fees on the total value of a client’s portfolio assuming (a) quarterly fee assessment, (b) $1,000,000 investment, (c) portfolio return of 8% a year, and (d) 1.00% annual investment advisory fee would be $10,416 in the first year, and cumulative effects of $59,816 over five years and $143,430 over ten years. Actual investment advisory fees incurred by clients may vary.

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