Fees and expenses survey 2022: How we reached our results

Our Fees & Expenses Survey is one of the most comprehensive in the private markets industry.

The Private Funds CFO Fees & Expenses Survey – formerly known as the PFM Fees & Expenses Survey – was launched in 2014 in response to fund managers’ questions about who should pay for various fees and expenses. The resulting report, which we produce every two years, is intended as a benchmark to compare and review fee-related practices across the private markets industry.

Creating the benchmark

PEI Media’s Research & Analytics team surveyed 186 US alternatives fund managers on their fee and expenses practices in May and June 2022. We targeted CFOs because they are the most informed of these practices. However, if the CFOs were unavailable, we asked responses from other professionals, including CCOs, COOs and IR professionals, provided they were aware of the firms’ practices. The sample covers each region in the US with the largest proportion of respondents coming from the Northeast, reflecting the private equity hubs of New York, Washington, DC and Boston. We also received responses from across the AUM spectrum, from firms managing assets in excess of $10 billion to smaller GPs with AUMs under $500 million.

What about confidentiality?

To encourage wide participation, the survey is entirely confidential.

Why alternatives and not just private equity?

The survey’s emphasis is on private equity firms – 56 percent of respondents manage buyout or growth funds – but we included fund managers in other illiquid alternative asset classes such as private debt, venture capital and real estate. Much of the scrutiny facing private equity firms is equally placed on other alternative classes that we cover.