Standards initiative launched

Four practitioners are behind an initiative aimed at creating standards to improve the quality and distribution of performance-related data between GPs and LPs.

Paul de Klerk of Holland-based NIB Capital, Marcia Bateson of JP Morgan Partners, Trident Capital’s Steve Beitler and William Franklin of Bank of America Capital Corporation are the founding figures behind a new standards board that has been set up to promote transparency in private equity investment.

The members, brought together by Investran, a Miami-based provider of portfolio management tools that focuses on private equity, are hoping to create a new standard to bring about greater consistency in calculating and reporting of investment performance. Formatting the data in a uniform and practical way are also part of the board’s brief. Investran will be providing administrative support.

Commenting on the initiative, Jose Sinai, Investran’s CEO, said: “The board represents different constituents of the private equity industry – GPs and LPs. One of the key words is transparency.”

The stated aim is to work around some of the inherent difficulties in evaluating private equity fund performance. Steve Beitler, who will be representing general partners on the board, said: “Ultimately we could envision a model in which limited partners could reach directly into our secure databases and extract the information that they need for their reporting and analysis, in a seamless exchange of information.” Electronic data transfer could play a key role in the process, he added.

The board will spend the coming months working on the standard. It is looking to sign up new members during this formative period.