FIS Digital – May 2021

Opportunity for asset managers

Insights into private markets and venture may provide a real competitive edge for asset managers in demonstrating to investors an understanding of innovation and disruption and how this affects public market portfolios. As AI becomes more advanced and we approach the era of quantum computing, we are at a critical turning point. Understanding this, climate change and ESG factors will have a tremendous effect on existing portfolio exposures and expected returns.

This can range from understanding how AI and ML may positively impact the returns of pharma companies whose R&D returns have fallen to 9 year lows , to the impact of blockchain technologies on banks and payments systems.

Often the insights and implications are more subtle. At the launch of the first iPhone in 2007, little did we understand what the impact might be on the oil price – 13 years later, teenagers don’t go out to date, preferring to use social media. They don’t go to the movies as they can watch Netflix and they don’t go out to restaurants as they can order in with Deliveroo/home delivery. The secondary and tertiary consequences have become clear. So too, the value of a venture portfolio to a shipping company may be less in supply chain management and logistics innovation, and more in understanding how Precision Fermentation (PF) may lead within 5 yrs to the bankruptcy of the livestock industry, and the attendant implications for shipping beef.

We are already seeing Asset Managers build this capability – Wellington, Coatue, Baillie Gifford, Schroders.

Antler has a global network of 475 expert advisers to offer perspectives on this disruption and change. In addition, we will convene twice yearly sector specific days with relevant founders, advisers and select LPs to extract valuable insights from our platform on trends and new technologies.

Last, venture creates tremendous impact – lowering the barriers to entry to entrepreneurship, levelling the playing field, solving real problems and creating hundreds of jobs. We believe anyone can change the world with the right focus and grit. Our deeply held belief that talent comes from all backgrounds is reflected in our founder profiles – 40% of which are female, 80% of which are CEOs with 60 nationalities represented. We believe talent is very broadly distributed but not necessarily well served. In addition, ESG is an important feature of our portfolios and Antler is an official signatory of the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investments.

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