An advisor’s view: Choosing a series trust over a stand-alone trust

Tuesday, September 14, 2021 | By Brad Swenson, Head of Registered Fund Services

An advisor’s view:  Choosing a series trust over a stand-alone trust

We recently sat down with Jeff Hakala, CPA, CFA, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Chief Investment Officer at Clarkston Capital, and David W. Rumph, CPA, Director of Institutional Operations, Marketing & Strategy for Clarkston Capital to discuss their experiences selecting a series trust partner. Clarkston Capital Partners, LLC was looking for an efficient—and comprehensive—solution.

How did you decide between a series trust and a stand-alone trust?

Jeff Hakala: We had a short deadline for time to market. We only had six months to get launched. A series trust would allow us to meet those expectations more easily than a stand-alone. We also knew that a stand-alone would carry more risk and place more of an administrative burden on our staff, while a series trust would keep our internal resources focused on core investment advisory activities. So choosing a series trust was an easy decision.

What were the specific benefits you were looking for in a partner?

Jeff Hakala: Because we had such a short six-month deadline, a series trust with an independent board already in place was a huge benefit. Beyond that, the time savings keep going, with a partner that continues to manage that board process, keeps up with changing regulations, and takes care of the administrative tasks associated with the trust, we were free to focus on what we do best—investing and serving our clients.

You mentioned regulation. How does a series trust help in that area?

David Rumph: The SEC has come out with a number of new regulations impacting ’40 Act funds in the past several years. The regulations are a reality of the industry. Our job is to comply. It’s so helpful to have a secondary resource and a series trust partner with a lot of industry experience to strengthen the control environment.

You ultimately chose SS&C ALPS Series Trust. What were the results you saw from that partnership?

David Rumph:  It’s been a great experience. SS&C ALPS exceeded our timeline expectations and we were able to launch our funds without being distracted from our core activities as an investment advisor.

Jeff Hakala: Having one dedicated person in the firm that can focus on the trust allows others to focus on managing portfolios and serving our investment advisory clients.

To read more about Clarkston Capital’s selection process and how SS&C ALPS Series Trust solution helped them leverage industry expertise to gain efficiencies, download the "Clarkston Capital Partners, LLC" case study.


The material and its contents are for informational purposes only and are subject to change without notice. This material does not constitute, either explicitly or implicitly, any form of advice or recommendation to adopt any structure mentioned and does not constitute any provision of services or products by Clarkston Capital Partners, LLC (“Clarkston”). Clarkston is not affiliated with SS&C ALPS and SS&C ALPS has no actual authority and should not be viewed as having apparent authority to act on behalf of Clarkston. Any comments by Clarkston or its employees are not meant to suggest that Clarkston endorses or sponsors any non-Clarkston service or product and Clarkston is not undertaking any obligation or liability relating to any third-party product or service.

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