A post-pandemic mix of physical and digital interaction
SEB: Best Prime Broker – Although client interaction has increased through the shift to virtual working, the importance of relationships in the hedge fund business means physical meetings remain critical.
“When things normalise I think we will see a mix of physical and digital interaction, especially now that everyone has learnt to use digital tools efficiently,” suggests Fredrik Beyer (pictured), Head of Sales and Origination, SEB Prime Finance, “The pandemic has completely changed the way we interact with clients. Setting up quick meetings with clients has become easier, thus increasing client interaction. However, we still believe this is a relationship business and relationship building and maintenance requires physical meetings.”
The firm believes the outlook for the hedge fund industry is positive: “We believe that the hedge fund industry has a very positive outlook. Many firms and strategies have shown that they can deliver strong risk adjusted returns even through the very difficult markets we have seen for the past 12 months. The investors we speak to acknowledge this and investment appetite into the hedge fund industry remains strong.”
However, amid this opportunity, hedge funds must continue to navigate the ever-changing regulatory landscape and almost battle against it in order to innovate.
Beyer outlines: “Regulation continues to affect a large part of our business with clients. It is also, to a certain extent, impeding the innovation in the industry, something which has been one of the key driving forces behind the historic industry growth. However, we still see that we, our clients and our peers are able to recruit and maintain a lot of talent to continue to develop and innovate.”
In view of the market volatility and uncertainty experienced in the past year, SEB has discussed risk positioning and management at length with clients.
With more than 30 years’ experience as a prime broker and financing partner, SEB Prime Brokerage provides a comprehensive service to managers with an absolute return focus that covers a variety of strategies, structures and geographies. The firm aims to help its hedge fund clients to benefit from the strength and expertise of its broad offering and resources.
When it comes to the growth of the SEB business, Beyer says its overall objective is to continuously increase its level of service and interaction with clients. “One area which we feel is continuously increasing in importance for both us and for our clients is ESG. Being one of the highest regarded ESG banks in the world, we are working very closely together with our clients to advise and execute on a high variety of ESG related areas,” he highlights. n
Head of Prime Finance Sales & Origination, SEB
Fredrik has been working with hedge fund clients for more than 10 years. Initially as responsible for sales and marketing of tailored financing solutions and the past 6 years as head of Prime Finance Sales and Origination. Prior to the current role, Fredrik has been responsible establishing SEB’s advisory efforts towards the corporate client as well as being a client executive for the bank’s Insurance clients. Prior to Joining SEB Fredrik worked as an M&A advisor for Booz Allen & Hamilton’s Corporate Finance.