ASTARTE CAPITAL PARTNERS: A UNIQUE AND INNOVATIVE GLOBAL ASSET MANAGER IN THE REAL ASSETS SPACE


              Dr. Stavros Siokos

The focus of Astarte Capital Partners is within the real assets space and on strategies that benefit from major macroeconomic trends such as the aging population, need for food and water, need for clean energy and waste management, and finally smart infrastructure, and effecient use and allocation of natural resources. “Our aim was to create highly aligned co-investment platforms that offer access to real thematic asset baked strategies within an institutional framework that investors feel comfortable. We manage these platforms in partnership with the best in kind operators that aspired to manage their pool of discretionary capital within an institutional framework. The need for such alignment of interest between investors and asset managers and the demand for real assets opportunities managed by best in class professionals were the catalysts for creating Astarte Capital Partners,” said Dr. Stavros Siokos, Managing Partner of Astarte Capital Partners.

Astarte Capital Partners is a specialist co-investment platform focusing on value-add real asset opportunities. An organization must be structured to be competitive in business and receive one of the best companies’ status. “A friend of mine told me once that “very few people appreciate how many sleepless nights it takes to become an overnight success!” I believe this is the case for any entrepreneur. The first couple of years are challenging when you do not have a deep wallet behind you. You often wonder if you are seeing the end of the tunnel or the train coming, constant doubting and accumulating pressure but also a lot of excitement and fulfillment,” said Dr. Siokos.

“It is often mentioned that it usually takes double the time; double the money and half your friends to build something new and innovative, and Astarte is no exception. The first steps were challenging, but through the trust that some innovative investors showed us, we managed to grow into an asset management firm that is well respected now,” added Dr. Siokos. After months of research and evaluating hundreds of fast growing firms, Astarte Capital Partners has been recognized as one of the 50 Best Companies based on its innovation and growth.

It is challenging to develop a new firm especially when its activities are in the highly competitive and regulated field of asset management. As with anything innovative, it was challenging for the team to sit at the table with investors and advisors in the early days, primarily due to the novel investment model and the risk-averse nature of investors. “Despite our extensive track record and experience in the field, the first-time fund by a first-time manager is a challenge for a lot of investors. However, this was something we anticipated, and as a result, we budgeted enough resources for a significant amount of time. We finally managed to make the breakthrough through hard and focused work. Through time a lot of positive momentum transformed into a real business. We slowly transitioned from a concept to reality and eventually into a leading game-changer for the industry. Tipping points in this adventure were the build of a great team, closing our first fund, and finally executing our first investments. ,” said Dr. Siokos.

A lot of investment capital has recently transitioned into the private markets. Astarte’s investors, who are predominantly institutional, such as pension funds, sovereign funds, and insurances, find it difficult to access high-quality off-market deals that aligns with their investment objectives and principles. Through an extensive network, Astarte has access to some of the most exclusive opportunities in the market, several of which it is currently executing with high-caliber operating partners. The team’s ever-increasing deal flow also provides it with the opportunity to holistically view the investment spectrum sectors’ activity and evaluate the different type’s investment strategies in the market before deciding on the next investment target.

All Astarte’s investments are subject to its proprietary ESG evaluation framework, applied to the pre-screening due diligence process and throughout the executed transactions’ investment life. It helps predict, monitor, and address ESG issues before they have any material impact on its portfolio. Astarte’s investors have praised its efforts of being proactive in ESG, and promoting it is an essential part of investing in real assets and private markets in general.

OUR AIM WAS TO CREATE HIGHLY ALIGNED CO-INVESTMENT PLATFORMS THAT O ER ACCESS TO REAL THEMATIC ASSET BAKED STRATEGIES WITHIN AN INSTITUTIONAL FRAMEWORK THAT INVESTORS FEEL COMFORTABLE.

“COVID-19 has altered normality and transformed the way of conducting business. Fortunately, things have transitioned smoothly in terms of operations, and as a team, we have not faced any major challenges. Remote working became the norm, and performing all aspects of asset management was adjusted accordingly. If anything, we were forced to streamline our business in a more efficient way across the board. The biggest challenge remains for any new members of the team. It is difficult to be integrated into the culture of the firm with no daily physical interaction. We are working hard though to make this as seamless and as practical as possible,” said Dr. Siokos.

Through its presence in Australia, Europe, and North America, Astarte Capital Partners has developed an extensive network of investors and business partners. Due to Brexit, Astarte is now looking to strengthen its position in continental Europe with the establishment of a significant hub, most likely in Switzerland, as well as improving the footprint in North America and especially in Canada, a market that is very sophisticated when it comes to real asset investments. Asia is also an area for tremendous potential growth for Astarte, and it does not have a material presence in Asia as of now. Therefore, the organization aims to increase its presence within the next few years and grow relationships with local investors and business partners.

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