Three ways Market Lens gives GPs an unfair competitive advantage in investor relations & fundraising
by Andrés Ramos, Content Marketing Specialist – Nasdaq Private Fund Solutions
Having an information advantage over your competitors is crucial in any industry, regardless of the product or service being sold. This adage rings especially true in the private markets, where competition is fierce and information is scarce. According to Private Equity International, as of June 2020, over 3,100 funds were in the market competing for investor commitments. The transition to completely digital fundraising has only ratcheted up the difficulty for fund managers.
In search of a competitive advantage over their peers, many GPs have turned to new technology and tools like Market Lens, part of the Nasdaq eVestment platform.
Market Lens is a searchable database of intelligence, documents, and mandates from more than 8,000 public and corporate pension plans. By providing access to timely, fact-based information – and more forward-looking information – on the institutional market, Market Lens helps private fund managers gain a competitive edge in their investor relations and capital raising.
The platform offers complete access to these documents rather than cherry-picked data points that are hard to interpret. This gives users the full insight into why decisions have been made by investors, or why a consultant holds a specific view on a fund or strategy.
“For IR teams, Market Lens is an unfair advantage”
–Investor Relations Partner, VC Firm
Here’s three ways Market Lens users can gain a competitive advantage through the insights of the documents:
1. Know exactly how your fund fits into an existing portfolio
Use Document type: Portfolio Review
The most common document type available on Market Lens is the Portfolio Review. These consist primarily of detailed annual, semi-annual, or quarterly reviews of institutional investor portfolios. Also included are asset class specific program reviews that offer more granular visibility into a pension plan’s holdings within a given asset class.
Portfolio reviews offer valuable insight on an investor’s target allocations for any given asset class as well as the types of funds they are looking to add to the portfolio. For a fundraising manager a portfolio review can be a gold mine of valuable intelligence that helps them understand how best to position their fund when pitching to an investor. Additionally, portfolio reviews regularly detail the funds that an LP has previously invested in. This insight tells a prospective manager who among their peers they are likely to be competing with for a new allocation.
2. Understand what LPs and consultants are looking for in prospective funds
Use Document type: Investment Recommendation
It only takes looking at a sample Investment Recommendation to understand why they are one of the most popular document types with Market Lens users. Produced by both consultants and internal LP investment teams, the documents are reports presented to pension plan investment committees that advocate for a commitment to a chosen fund manager. Investment recommendations offer clear insight into the thought processes and investing rationales of these groups.
For a fundraising GP they can serve as a road map for how to win a commitment from a prospective LP or how to earn the figurative “seal of approval” from the advising consultant. Investment recommendations sometimes compare finalists for a commitment in a “head-to-head” format giving Market Lens users additional insights on the factors that caused an LP or consultant to pass on a manager.
3. Anticipate how and to whom your competitors are pitching their funds
Use Document Type: GP Presentation
One out of every five documents viewed on Market Lens is a GP Presentation. It’s easy to understand why these documents are popular with Market Lens users as they are direct intelligence into their peers’ offerings to the market. For every document on the platform, Market Lens UI offers an additional layer of insight by listing the name of the pension plan from whom any document is sourced. In the context of GP presentations this data is especially useful because it tells a fundraising manager who their competitors are targeting in their respective fundraises.
Used in conjunction with investment recommendations, enterprising Market Lens users can determine who won commitments from an LP and analyze their presentation decks to understand the style and format that clearly resonated with the investor. Like any document on the platform, their usefulness is limitless to a clever user.
BONUS: Solving your “unknown unknowns”
Use customized email alerts to unlock new insights
While an IR professional can leverage Market Lens to track down information that they know they need, it’s also a valuable tool for uncovering insights they didn’t know they need – their unknown unknowns.
Market Lens enables users to create custom alerts for any and all new information added to the platform. This functionality automatically delivers new documents and intelligence right to user inboxes and ensures full visibility into all parts the market.