On September 17, 2018, Canterbury Consulting’s Director of Research, Stuart Blair, CAIA, chaired the panel “Opportunities in Private Debt & Alternative Fixed Income” at the 2018 ALTSSV Conference, an annual forum focused on venture capital, private equity, private debt, hedge funds, and real assets, hosted in Silicon Valley. The panel included Amit Bafna, managing director of Antares Capital; Andrew Kerai, portfolio manager and senior credit strategist of RiverNorth; and Brendan Ross, chief executive officer of Direct Lending Investments.
As a standalone asset class, private debt has seen sustained growth marked by consolidation and increased fundraising competition. The panel discussed the genesis of the alternative credit industry, the various strategies offered under "alternative credit,” and the current state of the asset class, reviewing both the good and the bad. During the session, it became clear that alternative credit has grown tremendously — at the banking industry's expense, to a degree — and is here to stay. The growth has been, and continues to be, driven by investor demand for higher yield debt instruments and the need for debt to finance private equity-led buyouts. The panel concluded that for investors to succeed in this space manager selection will be key.
ALTSSV is developed and led by the CFA Society San Francisco, CAIA San Francisco, and the California Alternative Investments Association (CalALTS). The conference brought together some of the most sophisticated and experienced investors in the industry including Timothy Draper, founder of Draper Fisher Jurveston (DFJ); Priya Mathur, president of California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) Board of Administration; and Vivek Ranadive, owner of the Sacramento Kings.