Monthly Archives: July 2012

Athlete advisers Klarberg, Furst close to deal

Monarch Business and Wealth Management, a company owned by longtime financial adviser Barry Klarberg, is in talks to buy three other companies as part of a plan to build a larger firm that specializes in advising athletes and entertainers in money matters.One of the three targeted firms is Miami-based ASF Consulting, owned by longtime financial adviser to athletes Allen Furst. That deal, according to both Klarberg and Furst, could be closed as soon as this week. Deals to acquire the other two companies, which are based in California and Texas, are expected to close sometime this summer, Klarberg said. “We have term sheets out,” he said, but he declined to identify those firms by name.Klarberg represents 35 current or former athletes, including Mark Messier, Anna Kournikova and Ivan Lendl, along with entertainers that include Justin Timberlake and Charlie Sheen.Furst’s ASF represents about a dozen current and former MLB and NBA players, including Carlos Zambrano and Alonzo Mourning.“Allen, like me, is a pioneer, with over 25 years of experience working with professional athletes and entertainers,” Klarberg said. “Our track records alone are good. Together they are great.”New York-based private equity firm Asset Alliance Corp., which with its affiliates has more than $1 billion under management, recently acquired a 50 percent stake in Klarberg’s company, also based in New York. Asset Alliance is providing funding for the acquisitions, Klarberg said. “It is more than a consolidation; it’s more of a roll-up,” said Bruce Lipnick, founder, chairman, and CEO of Asset Alliance. He said bringing the individual firms together will help the groups collectively provide even more services to their athlete and entertainer clients.
Each company is run by a veteran wealth adviser with many years of experience and deep relationships in sports and/or entertainment, Klarberg said. The new entity will be renamed Monarch Partners, and the company may hire an executive with CEO-type experience to oversee the firm. Klarberg, 51, started his career in 1981 Deloitte & Touche (now Deloitte), founding a sports and entertainment practice that catered to wealthy individuals. In 1992, he founded KRT Business Management, and his business ultimately grew to a point where he was overseeing financials for about 700 athlete clients. In 2000, he joined the former Assante Sports Management Group, later moving his practice to Guggenheim Partners, the group that recently bought the Los Angeles Dodgers. He left Guggenheim and formed Monarch in 2009.Furst, 58, started at the former ProServ in 1978. He founded ProServ Financial Services in 1986, and in 1989, he teamed with Steve Disson to form Disson, Furst & Partners. He started ASF Consulting in 2002.There have been a number of roll-ups of agent businesses over the years that have included financial services for athletes. Monarch is planning to focus exclusively on lifelong wealth management for athletes and entertainers. “With all the years I have been in the industry, I haven’t seen an organization that has approached it with the right mind-set of working exclusively for the athlete on the financial side,” Furst said. “Our main goal and responsibility is to do what is in the best interest of the athlete or celebrity and to make a lot of money and hopefully create some financial security for him and his family for years to come.”


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Asset Alliance Launches Two Sales And Distribution Companies New York And London

  • Asset Alliance Corp launches two sales and distribution companies, Hedge Harbor, in New York and London, sees MENA markets as next focus for investors

    Investment management firm Asset Alliance Corporation, has expanded their initial foray into the investment placement and research arena with the launch of two sales and distribution companies. Asset Alliance, which launched Capintro Partners Limited in Dubai last year, will now have additional teams in both New York and London with companies Hedge Harbor Inc. and Hedge Harbor Limited. The three companies, which will work to cover opportunities in the largest global investment markets in the world, will be known collectively as Hedge Harbor.

    Hedge Harbor, designed as an investment placement company, will “represent best of breed managers across many strategies,” Arnold Mintz, Co-Founder and COO of Asset Alliance and Global Head of Hedge Harbor said. The company takes a consultant approach to the investment placement business. “We are involved in providing detailed analysis of the investment process, manager infrastructure, and the risk management profile. We provide a complete turnkey analysis of a managers skill set, capability, and performance. We only seek to represent a select few managers and work with them to achieve their goals of raising substantial assets from long-term investors.”

    Up and coming focus: MENA markets
    In a Deutsche Bank study released earlier this year, the Middle East/North Africa (MENA) region was deemed by those surveyed to be the likely top performing region in 2008 (Source). Mintz and Bob Stearns, Senior Managing Director of Hedge Harbor NY, echoed this opinion as they spoke with Opalesque. “Last year that region had very high, double digit returns and this year, while off from that performance, the region is still growth oriented and opportunistic, and benefits from the substantial wealth generated from oil exploration and oil wealth,” Mintz said.

    Stearns commented, “One of the interesting things about the MENA region is that it is much like the Gold Rush in the United States during the 1800’s”. “In the gold rush days a lot of money was made by the guys selling picks and shovels, it was an infrastructure play. A similar situation exists in the MENA region now – where you have a lot of oil money being reinvested into construction projects and technology and various other industries. It is an interesting play, without having the downside correlations of oil you have the benefit of the boom of the region.”

    Hedge Harbor currently represents a MENA fund. The manager, with approximately $100m in assets, runs a long/short equity fund, dedicated to the region. “They invest in a wide range of instruments including listed and unlisted equities, debt securities, options, warrants and other derivative instruments”.

    Expanding reach
    Hedge Harbor’s relationship with parent company Asset Alliance, which, together with its affiliate managers, has approximately $3.5bln under management and has been taking equity stakes in hedge funds since 1996, will also provide the opportunity of cross promotion between the two platforms. As Asset Alliance seeds new managers, Hedge Harbor will have the opportunity to review and evaluate them for possible early client investments, and those managers which Hedge Harbor finds may be evaluated by Asset Alliance for equity stakes.

    The Hedge Harbor team begins representing hedge funds, but expects to expand their business distribution capabilities into venture capital, private equity and real estate. Contact information: contact:


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Asset Alliance Understanding Managed Futures

  • In a time of historically low bond returns and high realized and potential equity market volatility, two strategies that investors are turning to are commodity trading advisors (CTAs) and global macro hedge funds. In adopting these strategies, it is important for investors to distinguish the similarities and differences between these strategies. CTAs in a hedge fund portfolio can be both a complement to and a substitute for a global macro allocation.

    Overview of Managed Futures

    Managed futures strategies are the general category of investment strategies into which CTAs fall. These managers implement a wide variety of trading strategies, but the common element of each is that they apply these systems primarily to futures contracts, over the-counter spot and forward contracts (in the case of currencies) and less often, options on futures contracts.

    A key feature of these contracts is that they are very liquid. The futures contracts are traded on global futures exchanges where large numbers of buyers and sellers transact every day. The liquidity provides easy entry and exit of positions as well as lower transaction costs because of narrower bid-ask spreads. Lowertransaction costs can improve the performance of the strategy.

    Evolution of the Futures Markets

    The futures markets were originally a way for producers and consumers of commodities to hedge price risk in an economy weighted more heavily toward agriculture than it is today. As the United States and global economies have shifted away from an agricultural focus, so has the composition of the futures markets. As late as 30 years ago,the futures markets were heavily weighted towards agricultural products. By 1980, trading in financial products besides currencies was limited primarily to US Treasury Bill and Bond futures.

    More Reading at

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Posted by on July 25, 2012 in Asset Alliance, Bruce H. Lipnick


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Asset Alliance Corporation, through its subsidiary, Asset Alliance Wealth Management, has acquired an equity interest in Monarch Business and Wealth Management, LLC. Monarch a financial and life management company founded by Barry Klarberg. Monarch represents professional athletes, internationally acclaimed entertainers and high net worth families.

“We believe that our two firms will provide a full-service platform to meet the special needs associated with Monarch’s clientele,” said Bruce Lipnick, Chairman & CEO of Asset Alliance. “Joining forces with Barry Klarberg, CEO of Monarch, the acquisition brings together a team of professionals with vast experience, integrity, and an understanding of how to preserve and increase the wealth of our clients.”

In conjunction with Asset Alliance Wealth Management, Monarch continues to offer clients a full suite of family office service and integrate those with the components of Asset Alliance’s distinct wealth management system. Monarch also seeks to continue to expand the scope of its business and wealth management services through synergistic partnerships and acquisitions of complementary businesses.

Klarberg was recently Senior Managing Director of Guggenheim Partners, LLC, heading up Guggenheim Wealth Services’ New York office. He began his career at Deloitte & Touche, where he was the firm’s National Director of Sports and Entertainment, before founding KRT Business Management. Barry authored “Winning Tax Strategies and Planning for Athletes and Entertainers,” a book considered to be a leading resource within the business management profession. He received a BBA in Accounting and a MS in Taxation from Pace University.


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Asset Alliance Position Aggregation And Reporting System


Transparency – Allows analysts to extract gain more value from position level transparency

„ Interconnectivity – Aggregates data from a variety of sources, including prime brokers, administrators, data vendors, pricing services

„ Scalability – Can expand with changes mandated by market conditions and user demands

Key System Features and Benefits

Monitor risk characteristics of multiple accounts and various strategies The platform aggregates position level data for multiple portfolios and creates reports on a single manager level as well as a portfolio level.

Combine views from a variety of disparate sources

Positions and various descriptive data are downloaded via proprietary technology that links directly to all major prime brokers. Valuations can be added from a variety of third party pricing sources.

Flexible reporting system

Reports are posted daily on a secure Internet portal. Reports can be downloaded to a user’s computer, saved to a network drive or a hard drive, and printed out.

Add-on capabilities for customized analysis

Built-in ability to expand with changes mandated by market conditions and user

Comprehensive Reporting Functionality

Aggregation of holdings across prime brokers.

Reconciliation of holdings and market values between the prime brokers and managers.

Changes in holdings by sectors, instrument types, average beta, duration, etc.

Comparisons across managers showing investment and performance patterns.

Allocation and performance histories.

Distribution of reports using an Intranet

PARS software was developed in response to the global need for increased transparency for investment management professionals. Developed and used successfully in-house by an investment organization, the software combines an expanded level of position aggregation with enhanced reporting capabilities. PARS allows risk managers to extract more value from position level transparency and thus is a valuable tool in portfolio management process.


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Asset Alliance Best managers who are still down from asset peaks present prime opportunities for re-seeding

Seed funds have had their fair share of the spotlight over the past few weeks, as they advocate for
allocating to a hedge fund industry that has fewer funds, more experienced managers spinning out of
investment banks, and a marketplace full of opportunity as global economies continue to deal with fallout
from the financial crisis. With the seed environment moving much more in the favor of investors than it
has been in the past years, stakes in new launches can be very rewarding. However, seed firm Asset
Alliance, head-quartered in New York, stresses that in this recovery climate the best risk/reward
opportunities in seeding aren’t always with newly launching managers.
“We think that the sweet spot right now is actually re-seeding managers as opposed to seeding a new
fund from scratch, which requires time for them to grow,” Bruce Lipnick, Asset Alliance CEO told
Stories of funds raising assets are in the headlines often enough that there is a level of optimism through
the industry that re-growth is solidly underway.
In February hedge funds saw $16.6bn in returning assets (BarclayHedge/TrimTabs), however, the cold
hard facts still add up to an industry with assets that are only a shadow of their former self. For most
managers this means asset bases are still decimated. And for a large number of these managers,
pointing to strong performance through 2008 and 2009, and best practices infrastructures hasn’t made a
difference in courting returning funds. And those are the managers Lipnick and his team are targeting.
“A lot of the managers who performed well but had liquid strategies, and didn’t gate have dropped from
$250m-$300m down to $50m. And now they are sitting there stuck in the mud,” he says. “They may have
a good track record, good infrastructure, no highwater marks and yet they still cannot raise assets.”
Asset Alliance itself has a strong optimistic outlook, not only for the opportunities that the better hedge
fund managers will be able to take advantage of, but also for the eventual return of assets to the industry.
With its strategic partnerships with third party marketing firm Hedge Harbor, which extends the firm’s
reach into Europe and the Middle East, the firm expects US managers to be able to tap into certain pools
of foreign investors, some for the very first time.
For re-seeds, once a manager is back up to a higher asset base, Lipnick says that generally speaking it
takes 1-2 years of solid performance to get them “back into the system” so that they are once again on
the radar screens of the institutional investors. And the firm sees institutional investors gradually
increasing their hedge fund investments overall.
“I think you are seeing more and more institutions realizing even though 2008 performance wasn’t good
across the industry, hedge funds still protected assets,” he says. “Wisconsin and New Jersey State
pension funds announced increases to their hedge fund allocations and we expect to see more of that
from other pensions that realize alternatives are where they need to look to make money and hedge
funds are a lot more liquid than private equity and there is no other way to meet this world wide trillion
dollars short fall for pensions.”

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Posted by on July 17, 2012 in Asset Alliance


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Asset Alliance Hedgeharbor multi-faceted investment management company

Hedgeharbor is an investment placement specialist committed to providing the highest quality alternative investment opportunities to institutional, corporate, not for profit, family offices and high net worth investors. As a consultant, our goal is to provide a high quality solutions based approach, whereby we help source, research, and identify investment alternatives for our clients. Our extensive global network of relationships helps differentiate and strengthen our ability to provide comprehensive coverage of the investment universe.

Hedgeharbor is a subsidiary of Asset Alliance Corporation, a multi-faceted investment management company and sister company of Asset Alliance Advisors, Inc., a registered investment advisor.  With offices strategically positioned in New York, California and has a London affiliate, Hedgeharbor services the growing demand for alternative investments through its professional consulting, distribution and research organization.  Asset Alliance has a unique business model, the company has developed a platform for institutional participation in the expansion of the hedge fund opportunity.

Hedgeharbor’s ability to foster invaluable relationships with investors helps us facilitate and build partnerships in which we can better serve their needs and objectives. Our expertise resides in the identification and introduction of investment managers and the products they sponsor for investor review and consideration.


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