New digital experience and “Alternative Allocations” podcast target financial advisors
Franklin Templeton has debuted a new initiative to showcase its expertise in alternative investment strategies, including a new Alternatives by Franklin Templeton digital experience, the Alternative Allocations podcast hosted by 35-year alts veteran Tony Davidow, and an award-winning continuing education (CE) program.
Tailored for the U.S. wealth management channel, this initiative aims to provide financial advisors with foundational knowledge across different alternative asset classes as well as independent, research-oriented guidance that is based on industry data around the effective use of alternative investments.
“Over the past several years, we’ve been extraordinarily deliberate about building our alternative investing capabilities, both through acquisitions and from the ground up,” said Dave Donahoo, Co-Head of U.S. Wealth Management Alternatives. “As we continue to build a diversified, market-leading alternatives business within the wealth channel, we’re providing advisors with a larger toolbox to help clients accomplish their long-term goals.”
This initiative is part of Franklin Templeton’s growing and dedicated alternatives platform that extends beyond traditional investment offerings. The firm’s autonomous specialist investment managers, each with deep domain expertise, provide a diverse range of alternative asset capabilities including private credit offerings from Benefit Street Partners and Alcentra, commercial real estate from Clarion Partners, hedged strategies from K2 Advisors and secondary private equity and co-investments from Lexington Partners. Franklin Templeton’s overall alternatives business totals approximately $257 billion in assets under management (AUM) as of June 30, 2023, or 18% of the firm’s total AUM.
The goal of the Alternatives by Franklin Templeton digital experience and related efforts is to help accelerate financial advisor adoption of alternatives, especially private market investments.
“With companies taking longer to go public, traditional lenders’ balance sheets are becoming more constrained, which leads to more demand for private capital,” said Jeff Masom, CFA, Head of U.S. Distribution. “One of the most interesting outcomes of this paradigm shift is the democratization of alternative investments and the increasing desire for uncorrelated and differentiated alpha. The key to all of this is education.”
The Alternative Allocations podcast is designed to provide practical, relatable advice to help advisors make effective allocation decisions for their clients. Host Tony Davidow is a Senior Alternatives Investment Strategist with the Franklin Templeton Institute, an innovative hub for research and knowledge sharing that unlocks the firm’s competitive advantage as a source of global market insights.
“Investing in alternative assets – which may offer higher returns and lower correlations to traditional stocks and bonds – is one way to improve investor outcomes,” Davidow said. “With recent innovations that make certain types of alternative products more accessible to individuals, such as lower minimum investments, and more flexible features, these investments that were once difficult to access are now available to a broader group of clients. We have created a robust ecosystem of educational materials and thought leadership that allows advisors to learn about the benefits and potential uses of alternative asset classes.”
Podcast guests will include John L. Bowman, Executive Vice President of the CAIA Association, which oversees the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst designation; Richard Byrne, President of Benefit Street Partners; Taylor T. Robinson, a Partner with Lexington Partners; and other notable industry experts.
The Franklin Templeton Academy offers content that is developed and delivered by Franklin Templeton’s alternatives experts through its Alternatives Education program, a robust learning suite aimed at helping financial professionals expand their knowledge of alternative investments and navigate the growing space with confidence. The program was honored by the 2023 WealthManagement.com Industry Awards* in the alternative investments category, which recognized its outstanding contributions to financial advisor success.
Coursework is eligible for credit toward Certified Financial Planner® (CFP®), Certified Investment Management Analyst® (CIMA®), Retirement Management Advisor® (RMA®) and Certified Private Wealth Advisor® (CPWA®) certifications and offered at no cost to the learner.
About Franklin Templeton
Franklin Resources, Inc. [NYSE:BEN] is a global investment management organization with subsidiaries operating as Franklin Templeton and serving clients in over 150 countries. Franklin Templeton’s mission is to help clients achieve better outcomes through investment management expertise, wealth management and technology solutions. Through its specialist investment managers, the company offers specialization on a global scale, bringing extensive capabilities in fixed income, equity, alternatives and multi-asset solutions. With more than 1,300 investment professionals, and offices in major financial markets around the world, the California-based company has over 75 years of investment experience and over $1.4 trillion in assets under management as of August 31, 2023. For more information, please visit franklintempleton.com and follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.
*Source: The 2023 WealthManagement.com Industry Awards, known as the Wealthies, awarded in September 2023, based on Franklin Templeton’s Alternatives Education Program for the period between December 2021 and May 2023. For the details of the award, including the assessment methodology and judging criteria, please refer to the official award website. Franklin Templeton did not pay an entry fee or other compensation for the award.
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What are the risks?
All investments involve risks, including possible loss of principal. Investments in many alternative investment strategies are complex and speculative, entail significant risk and should not be considered a complete investment program. Depending on the product invested in, an investment in alternative strategies may provide for only limited liquidity and is suitable only for persons who can afford to lose the entire amount of their investment. An investment strategy focused primarily on privately held companies presents certain challenges and involves incremental risks as opposed to investments in public companies, such as dealing with the lack of available information about these companies as well as their general lack of liquidity. Diversification does not guarantee a profit or protect against a loss.
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“We’ve been extraordinarily deliberate about building our alternative investing capabilities, both through acquisitions and from the ground up,” said Dave Donahoo, Co-Head of U.S. Wealth Management Alternatives at Franklin Templeton.