After two years of virtual Cohen Client Conference experiences, we were able to reunite in person this year in Nashville, Tennessee, allowing us to learn and connect in an interactive environment that can’t truly be replicated virtually. The group represented registered funds, investment advisers, hedge funds, officers, trustees, attorneys and accounting professionals.
We felt a lot of energy around the theme, “Setting the Stage,” which was fitting as we sat in the country musical capital of the world. But just as exciting for us was the opportunity to set the stage for our investment industry clients. Our leadership team kicked off the conference by outlining the strategic direction of the firm — our focus on operational excellence, being the employer of choice and maintaining our position as a premium provider — and what that means for clients, employees, community and the industry as a whole. We wanted to share our priorities moving forward as our new CEO, Chris Bellamy, takes center stage, including the laser focus our Registered Fund and Alternative Fund Groups have on their respective markets, and how they are approaching technical excellence in this wildly complex industry.
Throughout the two-day event we touched on numerous topics of change, disruption and opportunity in our industry — from the importance of flexibility to recruit and retain top talent, to the need for investment advisers to embrace technology to control costs among rising inflation, to the push toward uniform reporting on ESG related disclosures for investment companies. Attendees heard from industry experts on the latest ETF trends and the push toward balancing product innovation with the current regulatory environment. And of course we covered the ever changing seasons for cryptocurrencies, highlighting the challenges of operating a digital asset fund alongside continually evolving regulations — whether related to valuation, custody, structure or tax concerns.
One overarching topic no one could hide from is that of regulation and enforcement. SEC Chair Gensler has an aggressive standard setting agenda when it comes to ESG disclosures, naming rules, private fund reporting, condensed financial reporting and the regulation of digital assets. The recent adoption and implementation of 18f-4 and 2a-5 will continue to be a focus for the inspection teams. We anticipate additional scrutiny over the gatekeepers of the industry and a renewed focus on the “broken windows” theme of enforcement. Advisers should be asking themselves if they are doing what they say they are doing, and will they be prepared when, not if, regulators request additional information. The industry will continue to monitor how new regulations will impact the costs to operate products.
The conference offered a great balance of technical topics and opportunities for participants to network and rebuild critical relationships with colleagues and friends. We sincerely thank all of our speakers, panelists and attendees for your engagement and commitment to the industry. We can’t wait to see everyone next year!
Contact Brett Eichenberger at firstname.lastname@example.org or a member of your service team to discuss this topic further.
Cohen & Company is not rendering legal, accounting or other professional advice. Information contained in this post is considered accurate as of the date of publishing. Any action taken based on information in this blog should be taken only after a detailed review of the specific facts, circumstances and current law.