Category Archives: Announcements

Youre invited: Federal Enforcement Homeland Security Awards on 28th October

fehsf-bannerTo honor and support those on the front lines defending the American way of life.

Federal Enforcement Homeland Security Foundation (FEHSF) represents a powerful alliance between industry and government, providing immediate emergency funding to the courageous men and women who wear the uniform in Federal Law Enforcement.

The FEHSF supports the men and women in Federal Law Enforcement who provide the front line of defense against terrorism and who dedicate themselves to the protection and preservation of our way of life, upholding the laws of our country and protecting our citizens and borders.

Federal Enforcement Homeland Security Foundation

2013 Tom Ridge Homeland Security Awards

Monday, October 28, 2013

VIP (photo op) Reception: 6:00 P.M.

Cocktail Reception: 6:30 P.M.


Grand Hyatt New York

Park Avenue at Grand Central

Video: Click here

Invitation; Click here

Registration: Click here

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Posted by on September 18, 2013 in Announcements


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Lessons from Byron Wien on his 80th Birthday

Lessons from Byron Wien on his 80th Birthday

To the Attendees at Dick Strong’s January Symposium in Vail

Here are some of the lessons I have learned in my first 80 years.  I hope to continue to practice them in the next 80.

  1. Concentrate on finding a big idea that will make an impact on the people you want to influence.  The Ten Surprises which I started doing in 1986 has been a defining product.  People all over the world are aware of it and identify me with it.  What they seem to like about it is that I put myself at risk by going on record with these events which I believe are probable and hold myself accountable at year-end.  If you want to be successful and live a long, stimulating life, keep yourself at risk intellectually all the time.
  2. Network intensely.  Luck plays a big role in life and there is no better way to increase your luck than by knowing as many people as possible.  Nurture your network by sending articles, books and emails to people to show you’re thinking about them.  Write op-eds and thought pieces for major publications.  Organize discussion groups to bring your thoughtful friends together.
  3. Get enough sleep.  Seven hours will do until you’re sixty, eight from sixty to seventy, nine thereafter which might include eight hours at night and a one hour afternoon nap.
  4. Evolve.  Try to think of your life in phases so you can avoid a burn-out.  Do the numbers crunching in the early phase of your career.  Try developing concepts later on.  Stay at risk throughout the process.
  5. Travel extensively.  Try to get everywhere before you wear out.  Attempt to meet local interesting people where you travel and keep in contact with them throughout your life.  See them when you return to a place.
  6. When meeting someone new, try to find out what formative experience occurred in their lives before they were seventeen.  It is my belief that some important event in everyone’s youth has an influence on everything that occurs afterwards.
  7. On philanthropy my approach is to try to relieve pain rather than spread joy.  Music, theatre and art museums have many affluent supporters, give the best parties and it can add to your social luster in a community.  They don’t need you.  Social service, hospitals and educational institutions can make the world a better place and help the disadvantaged make their way toward the American dream.
  8. Younger people are naturally insecure and tend to overplay their accomplishments.  Most people don’t become comfortable with who they are until they’re in their 40’s.  By that time they can underplay their achievements and become a nicer more likeable person.  Try to get to that point as soon as you can.
  9. Take the time to pat those who work for you on the back when they do good work.  Most people are so focused on the next challenge that they fail to thank the people who support them.  It is important to do this.  It motivates and inspires people and encourages them to perform at a higher level.
  10. When someone extends a kindness to you write them a hand-written note, not an e-mail.  Handwritten notes make an impact and are not quickly forgotten.
  11. At the beginning of every year think of ways you can do your job better than you have ever done it before.  Write it down and look at what you have set out for yourself when the year is over.
  12. Never retire.  If you work forever, you can live forever.  I know there is an abundance of biological evidence against this, but I’m going with this theory anyway.
 Happy 80th Birthday Mr Wien. 
Related Posts:  Ten Surprises for 2013
Related Posts:  Ten Surprises for 2012
Related Posts:  Ten Surpises for 2010
Related Posts: Ten Surpirses for 2009 (Chief Investment Strategist of Pequot Capital), 2008, 2007, 2006,

by Anric



World Day to Combat Desertification: Monday, 17 June 2013

World Day to Combat Desertification: Monday, 17 June 2013

World Day to Combat Desertification

Monday, 17 June 2013

The theme of the 2013 World Day to Combat Desertification is drought and water scarcity. Freshwater is valuable. Of all the water on Earth, only 2.5 per cent is freshwater. And of all this freshwater, the total usable supply for ecosystems and humans is less than 1 per cent. When demand for water exceeds available supply, it results in water scarcity. Drylands are particularly vulnerable to water scarcity. The projected intensification of freshwater scarcity will cause greater stresses in drylands. While each person needs at least 2,000 cubic meters of water for human well-being and sustainable development every year, on average, people in the drylands have access to only 1,300 cubic meters.

The goal of the 2013 World Day to Combat Desertification is to create awareness about the risks of drought and water scarcity in the drylands and beyond, calling attention to the importance of sustaining healthy soils as part of post Rio+20 agenda, as well as the post-2015 sustainable development agenda.

This year’s slogan, “Don’t let our future dry up” calls for everyone to take action to promote preparedness and resilience to water scarcity, desertification and drought. The slogan embodies the message that we are all responsible for water and land conservation and sustainable use, and that there are solutions to these serious natural resource challenges. Land degradation does not have to threaten our future.

Download PDF for more information

Water ‐ precious resource
Freshwater is valuable. Of all the water on Earth, only 2.5 per cent is freshwater. And of all this freshwater, the total usable supply for ecosystems and humans is less than 1 per cent.  When demand for water exceeds available supply, it results in water scarcity. This is why the World Economic Forum, in their Global Risk Report 2013, suggests that decreasing water supply is among the top five risks, both by likelihood and impact, that humanity faces over the next ten years.
Increasing water scarcity and drought, in part as a result of climate change, will have potential catalytic negative social and economic impacts on food security, energy availability, political stability
and peace.
Freshwater is renewable, but depends on the continued healthy functioning of ecosystems. Some 70 per cent of the freshwater available globally is held in the soil and is accessible to plants, and only 11 per cent is accessible as stream flow and groundwater. Globally, agriculture accounts for at least 70 per cent of freshwater use, up to 90 per cent in some fast‐growing economies. But unsustainable agricultural practices pollute fresh water sources and cause land to become degraded. Land degradation in turn lowers water tables, resulting in water shortages and salt intrusion in coastal areas, and worsening the effects of drought on affected populations and ecosystems. It is predicted that the effects of desertification, land degradation and drought may expose almost two‐thirds of the world’s population to increased water stress by 2025

by Anric


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Anric Blatt to speak at upcoming Global AgInvesting conference

Anric Blatt to speak at upcoming Global AgInvesting conference

Global AgInvesting 2013

New York Apr 29, 2013 – May 02, 2013

Global AgInvesting is the world’s most well attended agriculture investment event.

Global Fund Exchange Group Chairman and Portfolio Manager, Anric Blatt will be moderating the following panel at the 2013 Global AgInvesting conference at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York.

Liquid Ag Strategies

Wednesday, May 1: Main Conference Day 2 from 2:30-3:30 

Moderator: Anric Blatt, Chairman, Global Fund Exchange Group

In today’s unpredictable economy, many investors look to increase their exposure to agriculture while maintaining a certain level of liquidity. Publicly-listed ag equities, commodity future index funds, ag focused hedge funds and ag lending strategies provide investors with a more traditional exposure to the ag theme. Liquid investment in ag requires the same focus and specialization as illiquid investment strategies. Hear from leading managers about the opportunities in this segment of the market.

  • What are the different liquid strategies available to investors?
  • How do these strategies relate to the illiquid portfolio – in particular farmland?
  • What are the right questions for investors to ask when pursuing a liquid ag investment strategy?

Click here to see the agenda online or click here to download the conference brochure as PDF

ABOUT THE GLOBAL AGINVESTING 2013 CONFERENCE: Now in its fifth year, Global AgInvesting 2013 offers a comprehensive overview of agriculture investment opportunities, risks and return profiles across all major global production regions, as well as strategies for diversified ag portfolios including regional variation, private equity, and liquid investments. Concurrent track sessions will highlight the surrounding themes of ag venture capital and agricultural technology, water opportunities, and protein plays in livestock and dairy, global fisheries and aquaculture.

ABOUT THE GLOBAL FUND EXCHANGE GROUP: Established in 2005, the group focuses on providing institutional investors with professionally managed impact investment portfolios in the vital asset classes of ENERGY, WATER, FOOD and SCARCE NATURAL RESOURCES. As a multi-manager specialist, the group provides its visionary clients with liquid, transparent and low volatility access to some of the most advanced thinking and sought after investment talent in this rapidly growing sector that can no longer be ignored.

ABOUT ANRIC BLATT: As founder and chairman of the Global Fund Exchange Group, Anric Blatt sits at the intersection of capital markets and vital assets. An experienced hedge fund specialist with 20 years experience in financial markets, Mr Blatt has dedicated his entire focus towards providing profitable and cutting edge financial solutions towards some of planet earth’s greatest obstacles (and opportunities). Click here to read his bio, or visit his blog posts or connect with him on linkedin.

by Anric


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Coming agri boom garners investor attention

Coming agri boom garners investor attention

Calculating the amount of land planted with agri produce, 2012 should have seen the biggest harvests ever in the US, the world’s largest grain exporter. But it did not exactly happen like that. The country’s corn-belt was hit by the worst droughts since the 1930s and the impact on global food markets was exacerbated by dry weather in Russia and Brazil.

This is set to lead to a period of “agflation”, with food prices due to hit new record highs in 2013, according to Rabobank’s Food and Agribusiness Research unit.

The current bout of price rises is mainly affecting commodities that are largely used in animal feed such as corn and soybeans, as opposed to the last bout of food inflation in 2008, when the price of staple foods such as wheat, maize and rice doubled, hitting the world’s poor hardest.

Agricultural companies however are priced significantly below their long term averages as equity investors have not yet adjusted to this new normal.

“Demand for agricultural commodities is expected to outweigh supply as these key macro trends continue,” says a report from the UN’s Principles for Responsible Investment*.

As well as pension funds, the sector is attracting insurance companies and sovereign wealth funds, no doubt aided by the increasing press coverage, educational efforts by funds like the Food and Water funds from Global Fund Exchange and a number of investor conferences on the subject.

On February 26th and 27th, Anric Blatt, portfolio manager of the Food and Water focused AquaTerra fund will be speaking at the Global Ag Conference in Abu Dhabi. Click here to read more about the conference, download the program and register.

Global AgInvesting Middle East (February 25-27, 2013) offers a comprehensive overview of agriculture investment opportunities, risks, and return profiles across all major global production regions, as well as strategies for diversified ag portfolios including regional variation, private equity, liquid investments, water, and protein plays. Produced by HighQuest Partners, GAI Middle East will highlight strategies for ensuring food security, including outsourcing and technological advances. Panel discussions will provide attendees with a picture of the agriculture investing landscape and a clear idea of where the real money is moving in the space.

GAI Middle East is produced in conjunction with the Food Security Center of Abu Dhabi

by Anric


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Why Invest in Vital Assets

Food, water, energy and metals are the drivers of industrial, economic and social growth. As the world’s population rises and the clamor for higher living standards gets louder, so too the struggle for resource access intensifies. This crisis for mankind and our planet is simultaneously our greatest challenge, as well as a once in a lifetime investment opportunity for visionary investors.

“Superstorm” Sandy recently slammed the Northeastern United States. Millions realized for the first time, how they take fresh food, clean water, gasoline and electricity for granted. This is a small taste of the supply shortages that are happening on a global scale, as population and demand outgrow supply and access.

Benefit from the many years of experience that the Global Fund Exchange team has gathered by investing in vitally important asset classes such as water, food and energy. These are the greatest drivers of investment returns going forward and not learning about it and doing something about it carries great risk to all.

Watch the Video below for more information.

by Anric


Opalesque Exclusive: Commodities fund of hedge funds manager cuts second layer of fees

September 13, 2012

Benedicte Gravrand, Opalesque Geneva:

Anric Blatt, Chairman of Global Fund Exchange, an investment management group, told Opalesque that he would drastically reduce his fees for a couple of month.

All his funds are multi-manager funds: either funds of managed accounts, hybrids or funds of hedge funds. They focus on investments in clean energy, water, agriculture, energy and natural resources.

Investors who invest up to $100m in any of the funds within the next two dealing dates (September 28 and October 31) will be charged a flat management fee of 0.75% per annum, and all performance fees will be waived for three years, he said.

Global Fund Exchange came into the hedge fund industry with the idea to make difference. “We saw a massive gap in the market place between institutional investors putting capital to work and essentially the most significant asset classes that are going to drive future human growth, that is energy, water, agriculture, clean energy, natural resources, carbon trading and so on,” Blatt explained from his New York offices.

He found by speaking with institutional clients that although the latter love the funds’ themes, the full transparency and the weekly estimates his group supplies, they are not so keen on the “fees on top of fees.” This is becoming a classic challenge in the world of funds of funds, as investors are increasingly reluctant to bear the double layer of fees (the underlying managers’ management and performance fees, as well as those of their fund of funds manager.)

So Global Fund Exchange (GFE) had a very close look at the effect of fees on performance and found that they agree with institutional investors. They worked out that removing the last layer of performance fees (their own, not the underlying managers’) and lowering management fees would create a win-win situation; the investors would only have one layer of performance fees (usually around 20% in the world of hedge funds), and GFE would gain more assets. And instead of going through third-party marketers – who must be paid fees – GFE are now making direct offers.

Here is as brief overview of the funds of funds in question:

– The Aquaterra fund, a portfolio of 8-10 specialist managers investing in agriculture, water and other scarce natural resources. This Cayman-domiciled feeder fund has returned 48% since its April ’08 inception. It was up 2.47% in July and up 3.52% YTD (we wrote about it last year).

– The Earth Wind & Fire (EWF) Fund is global macro, multi-strategy, multi-manager investment fund focusing on the future of energy through eight segregated portfolios: clean energy, water, agriculture, energy, natural resources, carbon, systematic trading and hedging. It has returned 47% since its January’07 inception. It is up 0.59% in July, down 1.38% YTD.

– The EWF Pure Water Fund, a long-biased strategy focused on specialist water equity managers. The Cayman-domiciled fund has returned 7.44% since its January ’07 inception. It is up 1.20% in July, up 0.51% YTD.

– The EWF Energy Fund gathers highly experienced energy managers. It has returned 45% since its January ’07 inception. It was down 1.37% in July, down 2.25% YTD.

– The EWF Hybrid Energy Fund comprises a mixture of traditional energy and clean energy investments. It has returned 36.8% since its January ’07 inception. It is down 0.14% in July, up 1.89% YTD.

The HFRI Fund of Funds Composite Index is up 2.40% YTD (to August) and the HFRI Energy/Basic Materials Index down 5.09% YTD.

New, improved model needed now
This asset manager may be among those in the fund of funds world who are making a new mold.

In the last few years – since ’08 – investors, faced with sometimes lukewarm performance from their hedge fund investments, have been trying to negotiate or re-negotiate the traditionally high 2-and-20 fees that are eating into the returns. Because of tricky performance and the double layer of fees, funds of funds have seemed a lot less attractive to investors and have been suffering as a consequence.

The fee re-negotiation is starting to work among single manager funds, as Preqin, a research house, recently confirmed: “The current mean performance fee for single-manager hedge funds is 18.69%, whereas in 2011 this figure stood at a higher 19.20%.” (see our article here).

Funds of funds need to follow suit. Negotiating fees with underlying managers, lowering some of the costs, lowering their own fees, waiving some, and redistributing retrocessions would attract a lot more assets and could improve the uncertain prospects of this otherwise valuable business model.
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Posted by on September 13, 2012 in Announcements, Press Releases


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