Moving On: Boardroom Challenges When a Fund Just isn’t Working

Andrew Rogers, President of The Gemini Companies, was quoted in the recent Fund Directions article “Moving On: Boardroom Challenges when a Fund Just isn’t Working”.

Fund boards are in constant conversation with their management companies about the viability of their strategy, especially at smaller funds, startups and series trusts, according to Andrew Rogers, CEO at fund administrator Gemini Fund Services.
“Typically, the fund board is asking the adviser: What’s your story? What’s going to differentiate you from competitors? What’s the past performance of similar types of products? What are you doing to provide greater alpha?” Rogers told Fund Directions. “As part of that road map to success, they have to ask whether it’s in the best interest of shareholders to keep the fund operational.”

To read the full article, click here.



Be DOL Ready – Examine Your Product Line Now!

The January issue of The Exchange is online now! This month’s issue highlights Gemini’s EDGE Conference coming up in April, comparing mutual funds to ETFs, examining your product line to be DOL -ready, and more.

Click here to read the January issue of The Exchange!


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The Fiduciary Rule’s BICE: An Uphill Battle

Under the Best Interest Contract Exemption (BICE), documentation and proof of compliance is critical, but will require major overhauls from operations all the way to distribution 

Alma Piscitello, head of strategic relationships at Northern Lights Distributors was recently quoted in the Fund Operations article, “The Fiduciary Rule’s BICE: An Uphill Battle.

“When we discuss communications, the client engagement piece is really important because teams now need to know how to implement and create a workflow process for every single client engagement touch point,” said Alma Piscitello, head of strategic relationships at Northern Lights Distributors. “There are specific communication impacts to clients in how you engage with them, the amount of information you must disclose and the documentation to follow. The rationale behind [fiduciary] advice must be explained, the advice must be documented, [conflicts of interest] must be disclosed and then the client has to attest to all of this.”

For mutual fund advisers that choose not to convert to a fee-based business and instead choose commission-based accounts, they must execute BICE, which would mean the process Piscitello outlined must happen every time there is communication with a client.

“So BICE impacts the communication with clients, as well as the communication needed internally with operations or marketing, as well as with the sales arm or sales organization,” Piscitello added.

To read more about the fiduciary rule’s BICE, click here.

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Aspect Capital Limited Partners with Gemini Alt to Grow Managed Futures Strategy

CHICAGO, Dec. 20, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — The Gemini Companies announce that Gemini Alternative Funds, LLC has added the Aspect Core Diversified Program, a managed futures strategy from Aspect Capital Limited, to the suite of offerings available on the Galaxy Plus Fund managed account platform.

Registered investment advisors (RIAs) as well as pensions, endowments, private wealth groups and other institutional investors in the U.S. can now seamlessly invest in the Aspect Core Diversified Program from London-based Aspect Capital through Galaxy Plus.

“We created Galaxy Plus to provide alternative asset investors with an independent, cost-effective solution that offers the flexibility, transparency and liquidity that they experience when investing in mutual funds,” said David Young, President of Gemini Alternative Funds. “The steady addition of strategies Commodity Trading Advisors (CTAs) like Aspect Capital validates the strength of the solution we have built. We look forward to our continued growth and diversifying the Galaxy Plus platform.”

To read the full press release, please click here.



Examine Your Product Line Now to be DOL-Ready

Alma Piscitello, SVP and head of strategic relationships for Northern Lights Distributors, LLC article, “Examine Your Product Line Now to be DOL-Ready” was published in Ignites.

Here is an excerpt from the article:

There is speculation whether the Department of Labor’s conflict of interest rule will be repealed under the new administration. Should enforcement of the rule persist, mutual fund complexes will need to revamp their distribution methods in response to the Department of Labor’s conflict-of-interest rule. Alma Piscitello of Northern Lights Distributors, LLC outlines which share classes are poised to do best, how fees will be impacted and what the rule will mean for managers’ relationships with financial advisors.

The Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule is poised to usher in a lot of changes for mutual fund managers, many related to distribution, starting April 10, 2017.

 Streamlining Share Classes

The current share-class alphabet soup causes much confusion among investors. The fiduciary rule is poised to streamline share classes as it expedites the shift from commission-based to fee-based product sales. This would greatly benefit investors, who will have greater transparency and potentially lower costs.

But while investors may benefit, managers should brace for potentially higher platform fees and other costs.

To read the full article, click here.

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The Evolution of Alternative Investment Strategies

Gemini Alternative Funds, LLC President, David Young recently contributed an article to the HedgeWeek Special report regarding, “The Evolution of Alternative Investment Strategies.”

Allocations to alternative investment strategies have continued to evolve as asset owners – in particular pensions, endowments and family offices – have become more knowledgeable about, and comfortable with, these strategies. 

Direct investments into hedge funds, funds of hedge funds and alternative mutual funds are not meeting the increasingly complex needs of today’s institutional investors, where flexibility, tailored reporting, transparency and cost efficiency are key factors. 

Today, asset owners are searching for the appropriate structure and relationships that will provide them with the services and controls that meet their individual, committee and board requirements. The need for more control and governance, reduced fees, increased transparency and flexibility is only expected to increase over time. 

To read the rest of David’s article, click here.



DOL’s Fiduciary Rule Impact on Fund Managers

The December issue of The Exchange is online now! This month we are highlighting conference trends, the DOL Fiduciary Rule, Blue Sky Services, Managed Futures and more!

To read the latest issue of The Exchange, click here.


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DOL Ruling Potential Impacts and more in The Exchange

The November issue of The Exchange is online now! Don’t miss the latest insight into the DOL ruling potential impacts, distribution best practices, cybersecurity and more! You can also read about Gemini Fund’s two U.S. Mutual Fund Service Awards and Gemini Alt’s Best North American Managed Account Platform in this issue.

If you don’t already subscribe to The Exchange, click here to sign up.




Gemini Wins Two U.S. Mutual Fund Services Awards

The Gemini Companies are honored to announce that Gemini Fund Services, LLC (Gemini Fund, received two U.S. Mutual Fund Services Awards from Fund Intelligence Group—Best Administrator and Most Innovative Fund Administrator among servicers with under $100 billion in assets under administration. The awards were presented at a reception on October 6, 2016 at the Yale Club of New York City.

“We are consistently seeking innovative ways to make it easier for advisors of all sizes to launch and manage mutual funds in today’s ever-changing marketplace,” said Andrew Rogers, Chief Executive Officer of The Gemini Companies. “As a mutual fund administrator, we serve as an engaged partner offering support in navigating industry rules and regulations, helping advisors launch funds that will meet long-term goals.”

To read more about Gemini’s awards, click here. 



Intermediaries Asking For Increased Information Around Operational Functions

Alma Piscitello, SVP and Head of Strategic Relationships for Northern Lights Distributors, LLC (NLD) was quoted in the recent Fund Operations article, “Intermediaries Asking For Increased Information Around Operational Functions”.

As mutual fund companies continue to adopt a more stringent culture of compliance, they must be prepared to make full disclosures not only to their shareholders, but their intermediaries as well.

The current compliance environment and regulatory pressures coming from the SEC has caused intermediaries to seek in depth responses to their due diligence questionnaires. These questionnaires are not new, as many third-party providers have historically asked managers to fill them out before entering into a contract. But in today’s environment, assessing a company’s operational and compliance risk has grown even more important.

“We’re seeing a little bit of this now, but going forward, more fund companies will be asked to define their risk management policies and procedures around disaster recovery, which also is about people and succession planning. Intermediaries are saying ‘Tell me the controls and policies you have in place to implement the DOL [Fiduciary] Rule’ for example. They want to know what is being done to mitigate errors, stop errors from happening and be able to document all of that,” said Alma Piscitello, Senior V.P. at Northern Lights Distributors.

Northern Lights recently issued guidance for their asset manager clients on best practices when it comes to responding to due diligence questionnaires. As part of a response plan, fund companies are more often expected to have an understanding of how their company’s infrastructure operates front to back.

To read more about the information intermediaries are requesting, click here.