Partner Profiles

Sam Kay

Sam joined Travers Smith as a trainee in 1998 and he became a partner in 2008 (after a short interlude to pursue a dream of climbing Mount Everest - summiting on 20 May 2007). Sam heads up the Investment Funds group and specialises in fund formation work for a wide range of private funds.

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Head of Investment Funds:
Sam Kay

Private Funds

Our Private Funds practice covers a wide range of alternative investment fund structures with particular focus on private equity, real estate and hedge funds.

We advise on all aspects of fund formation, including: advice to determine the most appropriate structure (including offshore options) that will best fit the investment strategy, investor base and requirements of the management team; the FSA authorisation process for UK-based sponsors or investment advisers; regulatory capital requirements; legal advice on the marketing of investment funds in the UK; and negotiating fund terms with investors.

We also act for a large number of institutional investors participating in funds.  The experience of acting for GPs/managers and investors gives a 360° perspective, ensuring we have a comprehensive understanding of market trends and an ability to focus on key investor protection issues.  Other core work for the Private Funds practice includes advice on executive co-investment and carry arrangements, acting for secondary funds and funds of funds, acting on secondary direct transactions and advising on direct co-investments for LPs.

Our involvement does not stop when a fund is launched.  In fact, our experience is distinguishable from many in this sector in that we have specialist strength beyond the formation of a new fund.

  • We have significant experience working on internal restructurings, such as
    LLP conversions, succession planning or management spin-outs
  • Increasingly, regulatory advice is a vital requirement for Private Fund
    clients.  For a number of years, we have been at the forefront of understanding
    the European Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive and its implications
    for the industry.  Our flagship regulatory practice provides advice on a wide
    range of matters, from day-to-day issues to complex aspects of investment and
    trading (with particular specialism in advising hedge fund managers on the
    market abuse regime and shareholder activism)
  • Our finance group advises GPs and lenders on fund finance transactions such
    as limited partner bridge facilities
  • We are one of the leading firms on advisory work for hedge funds.  We
    provide wide-ranging advice, including on proposed public takeovers, merger
    arbitrage advice, short-selling issues and activist matters
  • Our regulatory investigations group provides advice on FCA investigations
    and wider litigation strategy

We aim to be a trusted adviser, building long-term relationships, assisting with day-to-day issues as well as standing alongside clients through crisis management.

Highlights of our recent work includes advising:

  • Abris Capital Partners, a private equity group focused on Central and
    Eastern Europe, on the €450m fundraising of Abris CEE Mid-Market Fund II LP
  • Arle Capital Partners on the spin-out of Candover Partners Limited and, as
    part of the process, the establishment of Preston Limited Partnership (backed by
    Pantheon Ventures) to acquire investments from Candover Investments plc
  • Benson Elliot on the successful fundraising of Benson Elliot Real Estate
    Partners III LP, with commitments in excess of €500m
  • Aberdeen Asset Managers on the merger of four Cayman Islands funds of hedge
    funds with combined assets under management in excess of US$600m and the
    formation of the new vehicle, Aberdeen International Multi-Strategy Fund
  • Elysian Capital its establishment as a new UK-based private equity firm and
    the formation of its debut fund, Elysian Capital I LP, with commitments of
  • David Gorton on the establishment (together with Brevan Howard) of the hedge
    fund management vehicle, DG Systematic Trading LLP
  • Voreda Real Estate Fund on its joint venture with Imperial College
  • institutional investors, such as Hermes GPE, Aberdeen Asset Managers and
    Aviva Investors on their participation in a wide range of funds