In the fast-paced world of alternative investments, the Managing Principal of Crescentem, Arshad Azim, stands out as a trailblazer, helping institutional investors reach investment goals that align with their vision.
Arshad Azim has been in the investment world for 25 years, and has managed billions of dollars of capital under his own company and under the likes of prominent investment consulting firms like Ennis Knupp & Associates (Predecessor to Aon Hewitt Investment Consulting).
Over Arshad Azim’s years as an investment consultant and as the Managing Principal of Crescentem, he’s made significant contributions in constructing investment portfolios worth billions of dollars in assets and has learned the many components that go into successfully raising capital.
“Significant capital-raising requires a nuanced approach,” says Azim.
“Of course, we bring our long-standing investor relations to bear, but we do so selectively for promising alternative investment managers,” says Azim.
Azim says in his years of experience he has seen investment firms catapult to billions of dollars in capital raised in just a few years. He has also seen other films stagnate at just a few hundred million dollars in assets under management.
Overall, he says, it’s crucial as an investment manager to have a reliable and impressive investment track record. It’s about foundation, structure and storytelling. A compelling narrative and strong ethics are exceptionally important things that increase a firm’s chances of success in the investment arena.
To elaborate on the component of storytelling, which is often forgotten by investment managers and firms alike, Arshad Azim says, “The greatest truths are the simplest and most investment managers are clueless in this arena. Standing out from the competition requires that an alternative investment manager have a compelling story and be an excellent storyteller.”
Storytelling is so important, according to Azim, because investment managers are required to communicate complex information at all times. Aside from communicating financial concepts and data to institutional investors, they are required to simplify and convey data in an understandable way.
Furthermore, they are required to build client relationships and first and foremost, trust. Trust is the foundational pillar in investor relationships, and to Arshad Azim and the team at Crescentem, it’s the most valuable reward. In the investment world, it can take years to build trust, and the greatest sustained returns on investment are generated after a considerable amount of effort and time – this is why trust is irreplaceable and the greatest asset to an investment manager.
Another component of capital raising success, according to Arshad Azim, is the timely deployment of capital as well as a sound exit strategy – beforehand – in order to create a reliable track record. The work of an alternative investment manager only starts with raising capital, and while it’s an important component, it’s not the be-all and end-all. In order to gain the long-term trust of investors, Crescentem is committed to choosing the right alternative investments and investment vehicles as well as protecting against all possible market downside scenarios to preserve capital.
“We largely raise investment capital from three regions: the United States, the Middle East and the Far East. In the Middle East, our focus is the GCC, which includes Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain,” says Azim.
Learn more about Crescentem on their official website.