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Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Three-quarters of limited partners in private equity funds say they want more opportunities to interact directly with one another, according to a Coller Capital survey released Monday.

Why it matters: LPs have historically been siloed, thus giving them less leverage and visibility when negotiating terms with general partners.

Flashback: In 2009 I organized something called the LP Congress, a one-day series of working groups in NYC for pension, endowment, family office, and fund-of-funds managers.

  • The most notable takeaway was how few of the hundred or so attendees had ever met each other before.

Today: Things don't appear to have changed too much, despite a decade in which LP complaints about fund fees have been bolstered by a cavalcade of regulatory fines.

  • Coller Capital, which surveyed 107 global LPs between February and March, discovered that 61% of European respondents and 50% of North American respondents want more opportunities to interact with other LPs invested in the same funds as they are.
  • A whopping 80% of North American LPs want more chances to interact with LPs outside of their region, while 47% want more chances to interact with LPs inside of their region.

What's the problem? General partners, particularly in how they rarely provide LPs with lists of what other institutions are invested in their funds.

  • Such information can eventually be gleaned via attendance at annual LP meetings, but GPs are known to position their own staffers so as to be in the middle of even informal LP conversations during coffee breaks.
  • Certain LPs are effectively prevented from even attending such meetings, due to either budgetary concerns or, in the case of public fund managers, regulations against accepting such "gifts" as a high-priced meal.
  • And then there's the pandemic, which makes any sort of physical meetings more difficult and international meetings nearly impossible.

Caveat: Coller did find that 82% of LPs are now satisfied by the level of transparency provided to them by GPs, up from a pitiful 40% back in the summer of 2009.

  • Plus, LPs today have a whole host of video, networking and encrypted chat options that didn't exist 11 years ago.

The bottom line: General partners may be barriers to LP interaction, but LPs must do a better job at hurdling them.

Go deeper

Updated 39 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Giuliani associate Lev Parnas convicted of campaign finance crimes

Lev Parnas, a former associate of then-President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Florida businessman Lev Parnas was convicted Friday on charges of conspiracy to make foreign contributions to political campaigns, according to multiple outlets.

Why it matters: Prosecutors said Parnas, then an associate of former President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, funneled over $150,000 from a Russian businessman into U.S. campaigns as part of an effort to land licenses in the U.S.'s legal cannabis industry.

Supreme Court agrees to hear challenges to Texas abortion law

Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear two cases challenging Texas' abortion law, which bans the procedure as soon as six weeks into pregnancy, but left the law in place in the meantime.

Why it matters: The court is moving extraordinarily fast on the Texas cases, compressing into just a few days a process that normally takes months. And that schedule means the court will take up Texas' ban a month before it hears another major abortion case — a challenge to Mississippi's own 2018 ban on abortions after 15 weeks.

Officials warn 5 key tech sectors will determine whether China overtakes U.S.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

U.S. intelligence officials responsible for protecting advanced technologies have narrowed their focus to five key sectors: artificial intelligence, quantum computing, biotechnology, semiconductors and autonomous systems.

Why it matters: China and Russia are employing a variety of legal and illegal methods to undermine and overtake U.S. dominance in these critical industries, officials warned in a new paper. Their success will determine "whether America remains the world’s leading superpower or is eclipsed by strategic competitors."

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