Standardized ESG metrics are coming

A hello from the new editor. Plus, the CFO of Cloverlay on developing its ESG policy; getting caught in the revolving door; LPs’ surging need for liquidity; and an update on our directory of secondaries law firms.

Hi! A quick hello from me, Graham Bippart, the new editor of Private Funds CFO. Feel free to drop me a line to talk all things private funds or even just to share your thoughts on our coverage. I hope to be meeting many of you in the coming weeks, and to see you in January at our 17th annual CFOs & COOs Forum in New York. More info on that here.

On that note: Registration is now open for sister publication PERE’s own CFOs & COOs Forum, to be held at the Convene conference center in New York April 29-30, 2020. It’s a prime networking opportunity – more than a third of attendees are C-suite execs in the private real estate market. Registration closes on Friday, December 13.

ESG: In a Q&A with Cloverlay CFO Omar Hassan, Brian Bonilla asks what its like to develop and implement an ESG policy.

The revolving door: Sister publication Regulatory Compliance Watch has an update forthcoming on a recent case of serious revolving door syndrome involving former SEC official Michael Cohn and GPB Capital. Cohn has been accused of leaking details of SEC investigations to GPB in order to secure a job as its CCO. We’ll be running a timeline of major SEC enforcement actions against private funds in 2019 in our upcoming Yearbook demonstrating the main focus areas of the regulator in this market, but this kind of thing is pretty obviously a major no-no. The SEC just this year fined KPMG a record $50 million, in part for using PCAOB information leaked to them from (now) former PCAOB officials. Prison terms have already been doled out, and more are likely. We’ll post RCW’s update on Private Funds CFO soon.

LP liquidity: PEI’s Rod James takes a look at a survey by Montana Capital Partners indicating that LPs’ need for liquidity has surged ahead of a possible downturn. The number of LPs citing liquidity requirements as a motivation for selling fund stakes hit a seven-year high, according to the study.

Speaking of secondaries: We’ve updated our directory of law firms in the secondaries market with details for Dechert and Latham & Watkins. The directory contains key details about each firm, including its description of the services it offers, examples of previous work, a listing of its PE clients and contact info for individual lawyers. If your firm isn’t on it and you think it should be, contact Philippa Kent.

Email prepared by Graham Bippart