Private Equity and Hedge Funds

Managing Conflicts of Interest in Private Equity and Venture Capital Funds

illustration of private equity fundsSince the Securities and Exchange Commission has recently taken an increasingly closer look at the activities of private equity and venture capital fund managers, it is more important than ever for fund managers to understand when conflicts of interest are likely to arise and how to manage them properly. The SEC has expressed concern about conflicts of interest inherent in the private equity business model and has brought several enforcement actions against private equity fund managers in the last couple of years that mostly focus on direct and indirect compensation to managers or advisers that were not properly disclosed to the fund’s investors. Since the SEC takes the position that fund managers and advisers owe a fiduciary duty of loyalty to act in the fund’s best interest, fund managers must keep a close eye on potential conflicts of interest and employ best practices like consulting advisory committees whenever possible conflicts arise. [Read more…]

Guide to Starting a Hedge Fund

starting a hedge fundAs an investment manager looking into starting a hedge fund, you know that a successful launch is critical to standing out in the increasingly competitive investment management business. If you want to attract capital from the right investors, you must put in place the right team and structure for your new fund. Discounting the legal and regulatory complexity involved with forming a hedge fund or trying to wear too many hats could lead to early mistakes that stifle momentum and are expensive to fix. This post describes some key considerations for aspiring hedge fund managers who are contemplating the formation of a new fund.

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Summary of the Proposed Amendments to Form ADV and Investment Advisers Act Rules

On May 20, 2015, the SEC issued proposed amendments to Form ADV and the Investment Advisers Act rules. In the release, the SEC proposed amendments to Form ADV that would require advisers to disclose additional information, such as information about separately managed account business, and allow private fund adviser entities operating a single advisory business to file one Form ADV. The release also contains proposed amendments to the Advisers Act books and records rule. [Read more…]

SEC Proposes New Form D Filing Requirements

On July 10, 2013, the same day it announced the adoption of rules permitting general solicitation under certain conditions and disqualifying “bad actors,” the Securities and Exchange Commission issued proposed new rules entitled “Amendments to Regulation D, Form D and Rule 156 under the Securities Act.” The proposal dramatically increases the Form D filing requirements for Rule 506 offerings and increases the consequences for failing to file Form D or filing Form D late.

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SEC Implements the “Bad Actor” Disqualification Provisions of Dodd-Frank

Previously, I summarized the Securities and Exchange Commission’s implementing regulations of Title II of the JOBS Act, lifting the ban on general solicitation for offerings exempt under Rule 506 of Regulation D, which were finalized on July 10, 2013.  At the same meeting, the SEC also finalized regulations which implement Section 926 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which requires the SEC to exclude certain felons and other “bad actors” from reliance on Rule 506.

Release No. 33-9414, entitled “Disqualification of Felons and Other ‘Bad Actors’ from Rule 506 Offerings,” is the final version of the rule and can be found here. “Bad actor” (or “bad boy”) disqualification provisions disqualify securities offerings from reliance on an exemption from registration if the issuer or other key persons (such as underwriters, placement agents, or directors, officers, or significant shareholders of the issuer) have been convicted of, or are subject to court or administrative sanctions for, securities fraud or other violations of specified laws. While such provisions can be found elsewhere in federal and state securities regulations, Rule 506 did not previously include any. [Read more…]