Alternative/hedge funds in United States
Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP’s hedge fund practice provides comprehensive support to the market's largest fund managers. Jointly led by Stephanie Breslow, David Efron, Marc Elovitz and David Nissenbaum, the team advises on the formation of a wide range of liquid-securities funds, including hedge funds, funds-of-funds, hybrid funds, and activist funds. Daniel Hunter is active in the growing secondary and credit funds space, while Jennifer Dunn has experience in the formation of managed accounts and single investor funds. Marc Elovitz and Brian Daly are noted for their regulatory expertise, with experience of designing internal compliance procedures, representing clients in enforcement actions before all the principal financial regulatory bodies, and obtaining SEC relief and exemption letters for novel fund structures. Stephanie Breslow, and David Nissenbaum chiefly focus on fund formation for institutional investors and managers, while David Efron is experienced in advising start-up funds.
‘A leader in hedge funds, but also has deep resources in all tangential areas such as regulatory, tax, labor, and employment – just to name a few.’
‘A very deep bench, and tremendous tax capabilities.’
Trian Partners Fund Management
Perella Weinberg Partners
Cerberus Capital Management
Fortress Investment Group
Elliot Management Corporation
- Represented Pantera Capital Management in the structuring and formation of several funds focused on cryptocurrencies and digital assets worth $700m.
- Advised Brookfield Investment Management on the creation of hedge fund manager platforms.
- Assisted Cerberus in raising $4.1bn for a new global fund focused on NPL portfolios.
- Advised the Blackstone Group on setting up funds of funds.
- Advised Woodline Partners on the launch of a $2bn hedge fund focused on healthcare and technology.
Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP advises many of the largest alternative and hedge fund managers (including BlackRock, Citadel, and Tudor Investment Corporation) on traditional fund formation, as well as on structuring fund manager spin-outs, incubation transactions, hybrid funds, and real estate funds. Practice head Lawrence Barshay specializes in the structuring investment funds and other alternative investments, while Walid Khuri focuses both on the formation and ongoing transactional work of funds-of-funds. Jessica Forbes and counsel David Selden are noted for their advice on the regulatory and compliance issues of fund formation, particularly as they apply to bespoke products and managed accounts. Also recommended are Lisa Schneider, Bradford Lucas, and Jonathan Adler, who focuses on funds transactions. Todd McMullan and Stacey Song were recently promoted to partner.
Other key lawyers:
AQR Capital Management
Brookfield Asset Management
D. E. Shaw
Point72 Asset Management
Tudor Investment Corporation
The alternative and hedge fund practice at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP acts for market-leading fund managers such as AQR, Blackstone, and JP Morgan Asset Management in regulatory compliance, crisis and risk management, SEC examinations, investor litigation, and employment disputes. Transactional support is a key focus, with expertise in seed capital transactions and strategic partnership arrangements. Practice head Udi Grofman, known for his ‘prodigious work ethic’, advised on the formation and management of several managed accounts on behalf of GSO Capital in 2019, and counts Apollo Global Management and D1 Capital among his clients. Amran Hussein and Lindsey Wiersma are experienced in structuring credit, distressed-asset, and hybrid funds. Marco Masotti, Conrad van Loggerenberg and Matthew Goldstein are also key contacts.
Other key lawyers:
‘Udi and his colleagues are the ne plus ultra within this space. No reason to go anywhere else.’
‘What makes Udi stand out from the crowd is as much his business judgment as his legal knowledge. He possesses a very rare commercial sensibility, obviating the need for so much of the wasteful dialectic that characterizes most lawyer-client relationships’
Blackstone Alternative Asset Management (and Blackstone/GSO Capital)
D1 Capital Partners
Glenview Capital Management
Tilden Park Capital Management
JP Morgan Asset Management
King Street Capital
Tiger Management Confidential
- Successfully represented Blackstone Alternative Asset Management in appealing against a Kentucky state court decision which declared BAAM liable for the underperformance of the state’s public pension fund.
- Advise Nokota Management on an ongoing basis.
- Advised HPS Investment Partners on the formation of several credit fund products.
- Represented Scott Bessent in the formation of Key Square Capital.
- Advising Two Sigma on issues related to fund maintenance and management company transactions.
Ropes & Gray LLP provides fund sponsors with a full range of legal support on fund formation and operational matters, including advice on related issues such as commodities, derivatives, activist investing, and investment transactions. The firm also advises commodity pool operators and trading advisers on product design, fund marketing, CFTC initiatives and CFTC enforcement. Practice head Laurel FitzPatrick focuses on creating internal governance and compensation structures, and has considerable expertise on the regulatory side, while Leigh Fraser in Boston chiefly assists clients with the formation of onshore and offshore private funds. Jessica O’Mary and Sarah Davidoff, are experience in structuring credit and hybrid funds, respectively. The ‘efficient and responsive’ Melissa Bender is also recommended; she is well-versed in managing investor relations and structuring placement agent arrangements and side letters. Morri Weinberg is another contact in the practice group.
‘The team is tireless, thinks contextually about second and third-order effects, and practical.’
‘The team is very efficient and very responsive.’
Partner Fund Management
Grantham, Mayo, Van Otterloo & Co.
Thornburg Investment Management
Dragoneer Investment Group
Sands Capital Ventures
- Advising Angelo Gordon on the launch of AG Direct Lending III, including assisting the fund to raise $2.75bn in equity.
- Assisting Thornburg Investment Management on the lanch of the Bandelier Coontingent Credit Fund.
- Acting as fund counsel for Windham Capital’s Windham Risk Premia Fund.
- Advising Pacific Investment Management Company on a range of issues, includingon the formation of PIMCO’s segregated portfolio company.
- Advised Abdiel Capital, with $2bn of assets under management, on its acquisition of artifical intelligence systems for trading use.
Sidley Austin LLP
Sidley Austin LLP advises alternative and hedge fund managers active in the derivatives, fixed incomes, and equity markets, on formation and management matters, trading documentation, and regulatory advice. The team also provides support in securities litigation and agency enforcement matters. Chicago-based William Kerr is a contact in the team.
Stephen Vine and Prakash Mehta lead the hedge funds practice at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, which represents mid-market and institutional fund sponsors and managers in the formation of hedge and hybrid funds. The firm draws on its global footprint to provide advice on the regulatory framework governing hedge fund activity in Hong Kong, as well as in Europe and the US. Kelli Moll is a key contact at the firm; she is experienced in forming hedge and credit funds, funds-of-one, and managed accounts, as well structuring seed capital arrangements and compensation plans. Eliot Raffkind, who works across the firm's Dallas and Houston offices, focuses his practice on the representation of investment managers and advising on portfolio investing activities. Senior counsel Caryn Greenspan is also recommended. Named lawyers are based in New York unless stated otherwise.
Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP has a core focus on the formation and operation of quant funds and hedge funds that invest in digital assets. The firm is active in the formation of start-up hedge funds in these spaces, with joint practice head Lance Zinman in Chicago having advised Johnathan Graham, the former head of Citadel’s quantitative trading platform, on the structuring of Aquatic Holdings and its two subsidiary quantitative hedge funds, in 2019. In New York, Henry Bregstein, Allison Yacker and joint practice head Wendy Cohen are sought after for structuring cryptocurrency funds, as well as funds-of-funds, credit funds, and trade finance funds. Along with Bregstein, Christian Hennion in Chicago takes the lead on regulatory issues, with a particular focus on SEC, FINRA, and CFTC examinations.
‘Henry Bregstein is the best combination of commercial pragmatism and a keen legal mind that I have met in 40 years on the Street.’
Vivaldi Capital Management
York Capital Management
ISAM Systematic Management / ISAM Funds
Post Road Group
Nebula Research and Development / Michael Graves
- Advising Aquatic Holdings, a new asset management firm with over $300m of assets under management founded by Jonathan Graham, formerly of Citadel, on its structuring and formation.
- Representing Angelo Gordon & Co. in negotiating and drafting a series of placement agent and third-party marketing agreements for its US and non-US investment funds.
- Advised ISAM Systematic Management on structuring a platform of multiple funds which enable it to create and manage customised portfolios for clients.
- Advised Nebula Research and Development on launching a discrete asset management firm specializing in cryptocurrencies.
- Advises York Capital Management, an investment management firm with $20.5bn assets under management, on an ongoing basis.
Lowenstein Sandler LLP
Lowenstein Sandler LLP has considerable experience in all aspects of fund formation and management, supporting new and established hedge funds from the middle-market up to mega fund level. The team represents funds engaged in a variety of industry investments, in fund formation and structuring, regulatory compliance, securities litigation, and employment and tax matters. The practice is led by Robert Minion, a highly experienced funds lawyer, Marie DeFalco, who primarily works with investment managers, and Peter Greene, noted for his work across the full spectrum of fund formation, launch, and management issues. The team also has a solid roster of broker-dealers, institutional investors, and commodity trader clients.
AO Asset Management
BlueMountain Capital Management
Cerberus Capital Management
Davidson Kempner Capital Management
Marathon Asset Management
Medley Capital Management
Melvin Capital Management
Pointer Management Company
- Represented Advocate Capital Management in the formation of two master-feeder funds.
- Advised Geode Capital Management on the launch of several onshore and offshore Bermuda-domiciled segregated portfolio companies.
- Advised the California Public Employees’ Retirement System, on the formation and launch of a captive hedge fund, including negotiating fund documents.
- Advised Millennium Management on disaggregation of commodity interests before the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
- Represented Romspen Investment Corporation in restructuring a master-feeder arrangement and the related development of a new Cayman-based feeder fund.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP advises on the formation of onshore and offshore hedge funds with activity in a variety of investment and financing strategies, including hybrid funds, master-feeder structured funds, funds of funds, and UCITs. As well as providing assistance on regulatory issues, joint practice heads Richard Goldman in Boston and Jedd Wider in New York advise US-based and international fund managers on strategic and seed capital arrangements, product structuring, and representation in investment activities. Brendan Kalb is experienced in structuring UCITs and liquid alternative funds, while Stephen Tirrell (Boston) and Joseph Zargari are names to note for hybrid-fund work. The firm’s investor-side practice is led by Christopher Dlutowski, who counts CalPERS among his key clients. Named lawyers are based in New York unless indicated otherwise.
AQR Capital Management
Calamos Wealth Management
California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS)
Capula Investment Management
Credit Suisse Hedging-Griffo
Discovery Capital Management
ExodusPoint Capital Management
Fortress Investment Group
Geode Capital Management
Innocap Investment Management
Logan Circle Partners
Och-Ziff Capital Management
Sciens Capital Management
State Board of Administration of Florida
Tenaron Capital Management
Two Sigma Investments
- Represented Advocate Capital Management with more than $1bn under management, in the formation of two master-feeder funds.
- Advised Two Sigma Investments (one of the largest hedge funds managers in the world with more than $60bn assets under management) on commodities matters, FX and trading advice, as well as advice relating to European regulatory UCITS matters.
- Advised Geode Capital Management (with $501bn in assets under management) on a number of fund formation projects, including the launch of several onshore and offshore segregated portfolio companies and related negotiation of derivatives-based trading agreements
- Advised global investment management firm Millennium Management (with $38.8bn under management) on CFTC issues relating to disaggregation of commodity interests, as well as various regulatory compliance matters.
- Advised ExodusPoint Capital Management on various commodity interest and general securities matters.
The hedge funds team at Proskauer Rose LLP has a particularly strong reputation for start-up funds; in 2019 the firm assisted Antora Peak Capital Management with launching a $75m hedge fund, advised Aldinger Capital Management on a managed futures fund, and also acted for Jay Rao, a former Balyasny and Millenium portfolio manager, in launching a $400m hedge fund focused on the healthcare sector. The practice group is jointly headed by three partners: Christopher Wells, who has extensive experience in fund formation, including hybrid structures, seed investments, agreements among principals, and employment and compensation arrangements; Michael Mavrides a name to note for federal and state investment adviser registration, commodity pool operator and commodity trading adviser registration, and other compliance issues; and Robert Leonard, who advises institutional investors, family offices, and investment advisers, on structuring master-feeder, side-by-side and mini-master-feeder funds.
‘The firm has excellent common sense, responds quickly to questions, and has a deep understanding of the rules and markets around the world.’
‘Their understanding of the market is second to none. Drawing on their experience, they come up with creative solutions to problems.’
‘Robert Leonard- top class, quick reasoning, efficient.’
‘Robert Leonard and his knowledge of the hedge fund/hybrid fund market has been a very valuable asset to our firm in developing new products.’
Atlantic Investment Management
Deerfield Management Company
DW Investment Management
Goldman Sachs Asset Management
Graham Capital Management
Element Capital Management
- Advised Aldinger Capital Management in launching a managed futures business and in registering as a commodity pool operator with the CFTC.
- Advised IFM Investors an Australian fund manager with $80bn of assets under management, on establishing a Cayman Islands unit trust.
- Advised on the formation of Integral Health Asset Management, a $400m hedge fund focused on the healthcare sector.
- Advised Trident Capital Management on the launch of a new futures fund, Trident Futures Fund.
- Assisted Prince Street Capital Management with the launch of the $1.1bn PS Tamerlane Fund, investing in opportunities in South East Asia.
Seward & Kissel LLP represents high-value established funds and institutional and emerging managers in a variety of matters, including fund formation, investment strategies, regulatory compliance, and employment issues. The practice also works with family offices, pension plans, and sovereign wealth funds. Key contacts include Steven Nadel, Christopher Riccardi, Debra Franzese, Craig Sklar, and tax expert Jon Brose. All lawyers are in New York.
Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP
Based in New York, the team at Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP advises fund managers on structuring and formation, spin-outs, manager compensation, seeding transactions, and regulatory and compliance issues. Key figures include Nora Jordan, who focuses on regulatory matters, having recently worked on SEC and CFTC investigations, and Leor Landa, a contact for the formation of hybrid, credit, and secondary funds. The firm is also active in the growing cryptocurrency and digital asset space, where Gregory Rowland has assisted in the formation of several funds focusing on digital currencies, including advice on complex transactions and restructurings. Clients include Citadel, Two Sigma, and Perella Weinberg.
Other key lawyers:
Alphadyne Asset Management
Chilton Investment Company
Czech Asset Management
D. E. Shaw
Graticule Asia Macro Advisors
Highbridge Capital Management
Hitchwood Capital Management
Och-Ziff Capital Management
SPF Investment Management
Two Sigma Investments
York Capital Management
- Advised a range of hedge funds, including funds operated by Two Sigma, Citadel, Bridgewater Associates, and JP Morgan, on compliance with the new Advisers Act regulations.
Dechert LLP focuses on cross-border fund formation and regulatory advice. The DC team has core strengths in funds regulatory work. Practice head David Vaughan, formerly the senior private fund policy advisor at the SEC, has unique experience of compliance issues in the formation of domestic and offshore private funds, and Michael Sherman handles compliance with the Investment Advisers Act and Investment Company Act for advisers specializing in non-standard asset classes (such as collateralized loan obligations, real estate and tax credit). Timothy Spangler in Orange County and Matthew Kerfoot in New York have active investor-side practices, while Timothy Clark (also in New York) advises on the cross-border transactional aspects of hedge funds investing in emerging markets.
Goodwin is extremely active in the crypto space, having advised on a number of fund launches, spin-outs, and token issuances for closed and open-ended funds investing in cryptocurrencies and digital assets. The firm has a particularly strong regulatory practice, advising on SEC examinations, helping to conduct internal compliance reviews, and designing internal procedures to ensure compliance. Washington DC-based counsel David Solander leads the team, which has recently emphasized its work assisting start-up funds transition into maturity, a notable example being MultiCoin Capital Partners, which now has $50m of assets under management. The team counts Electric Capital Partners and Discovery Capital Management among its key clients.
Multicoin Capital Management
Discovery Capital Management
C-III Capital Partners
Alger Dynamic Return Fund
Electric Capital Partners
Seavest Investment Group
One Stone Capital
- Advised Multicoin Capital Management, a $50m cryptocurrency asset fund manager, on fund restructuring and an SEC examination.
- Acts as lead counsel for Electric Capital Partners, a cryptocurrency fund.
- Advises Discovery Capital Management on an ongoing basis.
Kleinberg, Kaplan, Wolff & Cohen, P.C.
Eric Wagner and Jamie Nash jointly lead the hedge fund team at ‘Wall Street's best-kept secret’, Kleinberg, Kaplan, Wolff & Cohen, P.C. The firm’s clients range from established players, such as EMC, to start-ups and smaller funds pursuing non-traditional strategies – Gabriel Grego’s Quintessential Capital being one such example. Jamie Nash advises both start-up and mature fund managers on a wide range of capital raising structures, including hedge funds, funds-of-one, co-investment vehicles and joint ventures, while Eric Wagner has experience in representing single and multi-family offices. Jason Grunfeld (‘responsive, commercial, and thoughtful’) and Maurice Collada focus on fund platform restructuring, managed account agreements, side-letter negotiations, and insurance-dedicated funds.
‘They are well placed to compete with the top tier firms in this space with the added benefit of a cost effective and super responsive offering.’
‘The unique thing about KKWC is the combination of boutique-type individualized service and partner attention with large firm-caliber talent and breadth of expertise. We also found their pricing very reasonable for the quality of service provided.’
Our first launch was with Jamie Nash and the second launch was with Jason Grunfeld. Both were equally impressive – a deep familiarity of the law coupled with passionate advocacy for their clients.
Elliott Management Corporation (and its affiliates)
Quintessential Capital (and its founder, Gabriel Grego)
StoneHawk Capital Management
Glazer Capital (and its founder, Paul Glazer)
Shelter Haven Capital Management
Yarra Square Partners
Madison Avenue Partners (and its founder, Eli Samaha)
Paulson & Co.
Luxor Capital Group
- Represented Quintessential in its launch of a bespoke private investment fund for activist investing.
- Advised StoneHawk on its launch of a $29m master-feeder hedge fund.
- Represented Glazer Capital in the launch of its new arbitrage fund.
- Represented Yarra Square Partners in the launch of a $350m fund, including negotiating an initial $50m seed investment.
- Acted for Madison Avenue Partners in the formation and documentation for the master-feeder structure of its flagship fund with $125m of assets under management.
Paul Hastings LLP
Paul Hastings LLP is particularly experienced in fund restructuring and handling the transactional work of funds-of-funds. Practice head Art Zwickel focuses on structuring and organizing hedge and hybrid funds, as well as counseling investment advisers and broker-dealers on federal and state regulatory issues. Since joining the firm in 2016, Yousuf Dhamee has bolstered the firm’s practice; in addition to representing advisers and managers on fund formation, he has a strong investor-side practice, acting for sovereign wealth funds, family offices, and institutional investors. Also recommended is Ira Kustin in New York, who focuses on fund management, complex restructurings, succession planning, conflict resolution, and consent solicitations. The firm is also recognized for its work with start-up hedge funds. Named lawyers are based in Los Angeles unless stated otherwise.
‘Very business-oriented approach. They are cost conscious; they can be innovative, but mainly they effectively apply what has been known to work.’
‘Art Zwickel has been a great asset for us since the very beginning of our firm.’
Imperial Capital Asset Management
Hawk Ridge Capital
Glendon Capital Management
- Assisted LongTail Alpha, with the launch of three separate funds-of-one formed for various institutional investors in addition to providing ongoing corporate, securities and regulatory advice.
- Represented ICG Advisors in the restructuring of its liquid hedge fund-of-funds.
- Acted for Mosaic Real Estate Investors in negotiating and structuring a $250m co-investment vehicle for a large institutional investor.
- Assisted Imperial Capital Management with obtaining $175m in financing via Magnetar Capital and Symetra Life Insurance Company for an open-ended fund investing in industrial real estate.
- Advised Orso Partners on the formation of a hedge fund focused on a short-selling investment strategy.
The alternative and hedge fund practice at Shearman & Sterling LLP is weighted towards advising alternative and hedge fund managers on ongoing operational, regulatory, and transactional, matters, with considerable experience in complying with the EU’s Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive. The firm also advise on derivatives and credit transactions. The ‘extremely knowledgeable’ John (Sean) Finley, formerly in-house at Caxton Associates, has managed account arrangements, seeding and placement arrangements, and spin-outs. Paul Schreiber focuses on formation, and Nathan Greene and Ted Randolph are active in the regulatory and transactional space. Laura Friedrich represents institutional investors and major fund managers (such as Credit Suisse), and has particular expertise in Latin America-facing work.
‘Shearman & Sterling’s documentation and trading group is extremely strong and deep. They have a very strong breadth of knowledge.’
‘John (Sean) Finley is extremely knowledgeable from a compliance and regulatory perspective. He also has an excellent understanding of industry issues.’
Credit Suisse Asset Management
The Rohatyn Group (TRG)
Juniper Investment Company
Red Kite Management
New Holland Capital
- Acting for Maverick Capital on an ongoing basis.
- Advises Shenkman Capital management on US and EU regulatory and compliance matters.
- Advises Dynamo on US and EU on tax and regulatory matters.
- Advises Tachyon Partners, on transactional matters, SEC, and CFTC, regulation.
Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP advises hedge funds, commodity pool operators, and family offices. In addition to fund formation, the team has a focus on operational issues, such as examinations, swaps and derivatives transactions, and various other investing activities. Key figures in the practice group include Joseph Cunningham, Mark Vandehaar, and Margery Neale, who chairs the firm’s general asset management group. James Anderson has a strong regulatory practice, acting in the development and implementation of internal compliance procedures, helping to run mock SEC examinations, and handling investigations. Barry Barbash is a name to note for transactional work, and Rita Molesworth, a ‘fantastic advocate’, advises commodity pool operators and futures merchants on derivatives and securities matters.
‘Rita is our advocate. She knows the private fund space inside and out, and doesn’t hesitate to apply creativity and problem-solving to her analysis of the regulations.’
The ‘practically-minded’ Dorothy Mehta heads the alternative and hedge fund practice at Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP, which represents sovereign wealth funds, hedge funds, investment advisers, and real estate investment funds, and also advises start-up and institutional managers and investors. Based in New York, the team is noted for its ‘congenial’ and ‘disarming’ negotiating style, and is adept at handling regulatory and transactional issues, with a core focus on the establishment of separately managed account arrangements.
‘The team at CWT is a pleasure to work with. They are both personable and effective. They are always a pleasure to talk with, but they are also strong advocates.’
Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP
The ‘hands-on’ team at K&L Gates advises the managers of hedge funds and alternative investment funds on side letter negotiations, acquisitions of private investments, qualified opportunity zones investments and partnership reorganizations, as well as providing guidance on regulatory and compliance matters pertaining to US and foreign jurisdictions. Ruth Delaney counsels managers on their ERISA fiduciary responsibilities towards institutional investors, while Matthew Mangan centers his practice on advising major investors. Nicholas Hodge represents US-based and off-shore start-up and institutional managers, with expertise in timber funds. Mark Amorosi and Ndenisarya Bregasi jointly lead the practice group.
‘A personal, hands on approach combining industry experience with a working knowledge of the client and their needs.’
Eaton Vance Management
- Advised China Rock Capital Management on the regulatory aspects of a digital assets private fund.
- Advised on the formation of Keenan Capital fund in 2014 and continue to advise the fund on side letter negotiations and investment matters.
- Advised Russel Investments, a global manager with over $240bn of assets under management, on the launch of 20 private funds since 2016.
- Advised Eaton Vance Management on the creation of new collective trust funds for Eaton Vance Trust Company.
Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
Sullivan & Cromwell LLP works with a variety of alternative investment managers, institutional investors, and funds on regulatory compliance, particularly relating to securities, fund structuring, formation, and management, and internal fund governance issues. Whitney Chatterjee in New York is a contact in this space.