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One Ten Associates – Best Fund Management Recruitment Firm

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London-based One Ten Associates is a specialist recruitment firm set up by Founding Partner, Mush Ali (pictured), in 2011 to service the non-investment hiring needs of the hedge fund and private equity sector. Mush is a qualified accountant who previously worked at KPMG and General Electric before switching to recruitment in 2004.

One Ten Associates has grown its reputation by blending technical expertise in the alternatives sector with an established candidate network across the private equity, hedge fund, asset management, real estate, infrastructure and service provider sectors.

"We do not recruit for front-office investment roles. We focus entirely on non-investment roles in the middle and back office including compliance, finance, operations, sales and marketing and legal," confirms Mush. 

In terms of sourcing the `right talent', Mush explains that it is a constantly moving target. There is, he says, no substitute for meeting a client and a potential candidate to see if there is a fit. "This is something where we have always excelled because we are all experienced recruiters at One Ten. Over time, we've learnt to spot talent that would work well with certain clients and not with others."

He says that the impact of market regulation has led to a large uptick in managers needing compliance professionals. The compliance space is a fast evolving recruitment market, which year on year becomes harder to source the best talent. "It is also more expensive for our clients to recruit from this talent pool because they are in demand," states Mush, adding:

"In terms of operations, we have seen an increased focus on the junior end of the market, where hiring managers have a bias toward bright talent sitting in sell-side institutions who are looking for that first move into a hedge fund, whereas mid-level operations professionals seems to be getting cut as more funds are relying heavily on outsourcing operations."

Last year saw One Ten win a mixture of interesting mandates, helping both larger established managers with strategic key hires both at the junior and senior end as well as helping start-up managers with their initial key first hires on the non-investment side. 

To capitalise on the growth in the private equity and private debt market, One Ten hired an experienced recruiter with over 6 years of experience specifically in that market in January 2016 to build out One Ten's Private Equity, Real Estate and Debt Practice, focusing on finance and operations recruitment.

"Private equity is a real growth market, funds are continuing to grow and hedge fund managers are themselves beginning to look at alternative investment areas, launching direct lending funds. We believe in the research methodology at One Ten and have also built out our research function significantly in 2016 with two key hires. This has proved invaluable for us when dealing with the variety of client demands," says Mush. 

Looking ahead, he says that one of the goals for the next 12 months will be to consider expansion opportunities in Ireland and Luxembourg as well continued investment in experienced industry recruitment talent in London.

"There are opportunities, especially in Luxembourg. The Irish market is very well trodden but we are keeping our options open. Right now, 95 per cent of the work we do is still London-based," says Mush, noting that Q1 2017 was the best quarter since One Ten's inception. 

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