Business Family Article: FAMILY OFFICE THEMES FOR 2016

By Jeremy Hazlehurst 

What will family offices be talking about in the year ahead? We asked some big names in the industry for their views.

Jerome Stern, managing partner J Stern & Co:

We are still seeing the long-term trend, which has been ongoing since the 2008 financial crisis, of families moving away from complexity and towards straightforward investments, such as directly holding equities of great companies. Equally, we are seeing families continuing to move away from banks towards independent managers who are more aligned to them. Increases in complexity bring you diminishing returns. At least for their core investment, families want assets that are clear, simple and transparent and everyone in the family can understand and that are aligned with their values.

Another big trend is that families who have used private equity before are taking matters into their own hands, and getting involved in direct investments. That is not for everyone, as it needs aspecific capability and experienced professionals, but if they can do it, families are certainly becoming more interested in direct deals.

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