In a move aimed at enabling Hamilton Lane to better capitalise on new opportunities in Asia, Juan Delgado-Moreira, managing director for Asia and Europe, has moved from London to Hong Kong to strengthen the firm’s presence in the region. He will also continue to manage the firm’s European operations.
Hamilton Lane, whose focus is solely on private equity investment, has more than $105 billion of assets under management and supervision, including $16 billion of client capital managed on a discretionary basis.
The firm has invested in Asia since 1998, initially from its Philadelphia headquarters and later from London. Its Hong Kong office opened in 2009 with a local team managed by Delgado-Moreira from the UK. His relocation to Hong Kong reflects the firm’s view that private equity in Asia, as the most rapidly developing part of the global market, now warrants more management focus dedicated to it.
“We’re in front of a challenging investment environment in Asia, which in itself is reason enough for us to commit more senior management resources”, Delgado-Moreira said in an exclusive interview with PE Asia, his first since his arrival in China.
He said another reason was to position the firm for further growth in the region: “Asia is the biggest pool of new money coming into private equity, and over the past four years we’ve seen tremendous client growth. This is clearly not a bubble. We see it as a long-term trend.”
In addition to running funds of funds, Hamilton Lanes manages a collection of customised accounts for large institutions for which it builds often highly concentrated fund portfolios comprising relatively few managers. According to Delgado-Moreira, Asia’s LP base has evolved to a point where this kind of offering is now popular with local institutions, whereas five years ago it was less so. “We see more Asian clients needing customised, global programmes. As a global firm with scale, we are well positioned to provide these. The Asian market has moved into the Hamilton Lane model.”
In 2010 Hamilton Lane made commitments worth a total of $600 million to seven private equity funds in the emerging markets, of which four were created to invest across Asia.
The firm has 160 employees in ten offices around the world including Tokyo and Singapore. In Hong Kong, the total headcount is currently eleven.