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AllianceBernstein Provides Banks Funding in Return for Shoppers


Nov 12, 2023


(Bloomberg) — AllianceBernstein Holding LP’s head of alternate options Matthew Bass is getting cozy with among the world’s greatest banks.

The US fund supervisor that oversees nearly $670 billion of belongings is providing funding to lenders — enabling the banks to maintain their most prestigious shoppers candy — in return for a lower of the charges and entry to their shopper contact books. AllianceBernstein has been working with a variety of huge world establishments and smaller regional banks in want of a capital accomplice to originate actual property and client finance loans.

“We’re in a position to leverage the banks’ relationship with debtors, which they’ve developed over a few years,” Bass mentioned in a phone interview. “On the similar time, banks are in a position to hold these relationships in the event that they proceed lending, which supplies a win/win for the financial institution and asset supervisor.”

The tie-ups mark an additional blurring of the road between the roles of asset managers and lenders. For various asset managers, the offers give them the prospect to deploy their dry powder and originate loans, whereas the banks get to keep up their shopper relationships whilst regulatory stress drives their withdrawal from lending. 

AllianceBernstein’s banking partnerships are being funded by shopper capital raised throughout its nearly $60 billion alternate options enterprise, which homes non-public credit score, business actual property and particular alternatives. The agency is scaling up and investing in distribution for its non-public alternate options enterprise, Bass mentioned.

“We’re not within the again seat – we’re driving shotgun with the banks,” Bass mentioned. “The banks must have significant pores and skin within the sport for it to work.”

Different managers and hedge funds have been embracing the rise of personal credit score – an business that’s tripled in dimension since 2015 to $1.6 trillion at the moment. It’s grown to embody conventional direct lending to smaller firms and buyout financing in addition to actual property and infrastructure debt.

Wall Road banks are attempting to determine one of the simplest ways to compete with non-public credit score, which is consuming into the market share of the leveraged mortgage and high-yield bond markets, in addition to different lending arms — a key charge generator.

In latest months, Barclays Plc, Societe Generale SA, Deutsche Financial institution AG and Wells Fargo & Co. have all made concerted efforts to seize a slice of the non-public credit score market, with various methods that usually contain some type of partnership with exterior capital.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. is trying to find a possible accomplice to develop its non-public credit score enterprise, Bloomberg reported earlier this month. The financial institution is in discussions with a number of asset managers together with sovereign wealth funds, pension funds, endowments and various asset managers, folks acquainted with the scenario mentioned on the time. 

For AllianceBernstein’s half, it’s rising its alternate options enterprise primarily to capitalize on an anticipated wave of stress amid a funding crunch on the banks, in accordance with Bass. 

It’s at the moment elevating capital for a so-called NAV lending technique, he mentioned, a kind of financing that permits corporations to borrow in opposition to a pool of their portfolio firms. The debt product has surged in recognition as rising borrowing prices and weak valuations throughout the non-public fairness business have made it more durable to promote belongings and fundraise. 

Bass mentioned the agency can be concentrating on the ultra-wealthy — dubbed the holy grail by traders — because it permits them to develop their buyer base past conventional pension funds and endowments.

“Personal wealth traders are nonetheless underneath allotted to non-public credit score and are in search of extra merchandise,” Bass mentioned. “There’s lots of training that goes with that which we’re spending time on.”

“We’re seeing traders usually need extra granular data relating to non-public credit score investments,” he added.


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