Over 70 industry professionals converged at the Montage Hotel in Los Angeles, California to hear from leading experts about “Trends in Private Equity in 2013 and Beyond” hosted by PEF Services, Rothstein Kass and Paul Hastings.  Concerns about the impact of new regulation, capital raising, and the markets fueled the conversation.  Expert panelists, including Anne Anquillare, President, PEF Services, expressed optimism about the industry’s future, noting that five years have passed since the economic downturn of 2008, new legislation is in place, and fund managers can focus on deals.

Meredith Jones, Director of Business Advisory for Rothstein Kass, opened the program with a presentation that summarized a recent survey of the private equity market.  During her presentation, she noted that investors are optimistic about private equity, but have concerns regarding valuations, competition for deals, capital raising, liquidity event and regulatory uncertainty.

Marc Wolf, a partner at Rothstein Kass, moderated the first panel discussion on capital raising and operating a private equity fund in the new regulatory environment.  Panelists included Anne Anquillare, President, PEF Services; Daniel Heidenreich, principal, Hauser Private Equity (a fund of funds); and Siobhan Burke, Partner, Paul Hastings.

After an insightful overview of Dodd Frank, Jobs Act and other legislative changes by Burke, Anquillare used her position on the panel to advocate for small and emerging managers.  She pointed out that some parts of Dodd Frank (e.g., custody rules) do not make sense for the funds and yet they need to comply with them.  While understanding investors’ need for timely and accurate information, she pointed out that endless requests for information from investors can place considerable stress on a firm.

Heidenreich went on to discuss Hauser’s preferences when determining in which funds to invest.  Some of the criteria were a preference for growth or buyouts, likes to participate in the first close and willing to invest in first time funds.

Rob Carlson, a partner at Paul Hastings, moderated the second panel which focused on the deal market.  Panelists included Craig Dupper, Partner, Solis Capital Partners; Scott Kolbrenner, Managing Director of Houlihan Lokey and Dan Krasner, Principal of Platinum Equity.  The panel noted that due to changes in the tax laws there was a high volume of transactions at year end 2012, but predicted that after a lull for the first quarter, but there would be increasing activity as the year progressed.

The program was well received by the audience.  As one attendee exclaimed, “This was wonderful.  How often do you get your accountant, lawyer, fund administrator and investor together to discuss these issues!”