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Turner Investments to acquire Elkhorn Capital Group


Turner Investments Holdings, an affiliate of Veracen, is to acquire Elkhorn Capital Group, a specialist in exchange traded products, including ETFs, ETNs, and UITs. The acquisition, which is subject only to documentation and not conditioned on shareholder approval, is expected to close in a few weeks.

Upon the closing of the acquisition, Turner will gain significant product capability which complements the company’s existing investment processes and the technology platform developed by Veracen.  Elkhorn, led by Ben Fulton, formerly part of Invesco’s global ETF business, was an early innovator and leader in the creation of ETFs and UITs, and was the platform through which Fulton grew Invesco’s ETF assets from approximately USD6 billion to USD82 billion over nine years.
Fulton says: “Turner’s 26-year history and strong distribution capabilities, together with Veracen’s technology platform, represent a perfect combination with Elkhorn’s ETF platform and product development capabilities. “Turner’s disciplined, proprietary investment processes and operating platform will bring a high degree of automation and transparency over the investment process and products. We believe our combined capabilities will enhance the breadth and depth of our client offering at a lower cost, and will further empower our personnel who have vast experience in constructing the exchange traded investment engines, unit investment trusts, and other exchange traded products.”
Bob Turner (pictured), the CIO and founder of Turner Investments, adds: “Turner has developed a number of multi-factor and multi-asset class investment processes, including pure alpha trading strategies and risk management systems, which will provide us with a large number of market opportunities to deploy strategies that are in high demand among investors.
“The investment industry has witnessed tectonic shifts in technology, product structures, distribution channels, and fees over the past decade. This combination provides Turner with proprietary technology, added expertise, and unparalleled product development capabilities that we believe will deliver enhanced investment performance and value for both current and prospective clients over the long term. 
“We are shifting the firm’s investment focus to uncorrelated returns and more predictable investment processes, more efficient and lower cost product structures utilising the development capabilities of Elkhorn, with its collaboration partners, Barclays, Lunt Capital, and Dorsey, Wright & Associates, as well as the global technology and distribution platform.” 
The acquisition provides Turner with a cohesive team with 25 years of experience in exchange traded funds, unit investment trusts, and exchange traded notes, which will complement Turner’s long history and experience in mutual funds and separately managed accounts. Turner strategies will be managed utilising the Company’s proprietary investment processes, which are built around a global technology platform bolstered by a disciplined factor- and proprietary models-based approach.  
Turner’s strategies will cover all asset classes, from fixed income and equities to commodities and alternatives. Beta Plus and Strategic Alpha® products will be designed to produce alpha utilising an underlying index or beta strategy globally and across all asset classes. Investment themes will also include a series of global and international equity; momentum; absolute return; environmental, social and governance (ESG) strategies; and fixed income strategies. 
Fulton says: “There have been numerous meetings of the firms’ combined investment personnel held in Wheaton, Illinois; Berwyn, PA and in New York, and with Elkhorn stakeholders over the past several months. I believe that I can speak for everyone involved when I say that we are very excited about the depth of talent provided by the combined investment personnel and the number of new ETF strategies that we can launch on a combined platform. 
“Our industry has undergone significant changes, with investors becoming both more fee sensitive and more risk averse, and this merger provides the tools and expertise for Turner to deliver more predictable returns with enhanced value to institutional and retail clients. As a number of new investment products are brought to market in the coming months, I believe the investment community will be impressed by their quality, as well as by the personnel and processes we are developing – this is truly an exciting time for our firm and our clients.” 

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