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Rating:A Kudu-Backed Multiboutique Builds an AM Incubator Not Rated 4.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Friday, March 5, 2021

A Kudu-Backed Multiboutique Builds an AM Incubator

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

An Australian, multi-boutique asset manager, backed by a U.S. venture capital firm with a focus on asset management, is launching a U.S. asset management incubator, led by a veteran asset management chief.

Desmond "Des" Mac Intyre
Eolas Capital
Managing Director
On Monday, Glen Holding, co-founder and managing director of Channel Capital Pty Ltd., unveiled the Sydney-based firm's new, New York City-based subsidiary: Eolas Capital. Des Mac Intyre, who most recently served as chairman and CEO of Mellon Investments Corporation, will lead Eolas as managing director.

Channel (which is backed by Kudu, a New York-based, asset management-focused VC firm) now has eight boutiques, 30 people, and A$16 billion (about $12.3 billion) in AUM.

"Channel's platform has helped build durable investment managers in Australia for nearly a decade, and we're confident that with Des as our partner, we will expand successfully in the United States," Holding states.

As for Eolas, its mission will be helping small U.S. asset managers (and foreign asset managers coming into the U.S.) grow their business. Eolas will provide working capital and infrastructure (compliance, distribution, operations, and the like) so that the boutiques it supports "can focus on alpha generation," Mac Intyre explains. Eolas will "get a revenue share" and a "contingent option," but the focus is on letting the boutiques "retain equity and independence."

"This is not a lock-in," Mac Intyre tells MFWire. "Managers retain full autonomy and choice."

In terms of what they're looking for, Mac Intyre says he's interested in "firms that have a discrete specialist capability," and while he'll consider startups (especially with a "high pedigree team,") he's mostly interested in existing firms that want to grow. Specializations he might be interested in include: specialist fixed income, ESG, hedge funds, impact investing, and others with "unique and diversifying streams."

"I'm not going to get in bed with a large cap asset manager," Mac Intyre says.

On a related note, Mac Intyre notes that the Eolas team "will not duplicate" relationships with its boutiques: they want firms that are not competing with each other in the same niches.

Mac Intyre says he's starting to build out his team. Down the line he imagines possible bringing on staff from some of the boutiques they support, for firms looking to boost opportunities for their staff from non-investment areas like distribution and operations.

"I'm an entrepreneur at heart, and I'm excited by the opportunities," Mac Intyre says.

In addition to leading Mellon Investments Corporation, Mac Intyre previously held leadership roles at Bridgewater, Standish Mellon, Pareto Partners, Deutsche AM, Asset International, and GM AM. He also worked at Russell and the LSE. He is an alumnus of the University of Exeter and of University College Dublin. 

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