Alternatives fund administrator Alter Domus acquires IPS Fund Services

The acquisition will expand Alter Domus’ US footprint from Chicago into Boston, an important hub for the US private equity industry.

By Joe Parsons

Alternatives assets fund administrator, Alter Domus, has acquired Boston-based private equity and venture capital fund administrator IPS Fund Services, as the firm looks to accelerate its North America growth plans.

IPS Fund Services, with $9 billion in assets under administration, will join Alter Domus’ global team of over 1,000 private equity professionals to collaborate across regions and support clients.

The acquisition will expand Alter Domus’ US footprint from Chicago — where the firm holds a strong track record as the leading provider of debt servicing capabilities — into Boston, an important hub for the US private equity industry and home to a diverse pool of fund administration talent.

“Upholding our commitment to going wherever clients need us to be, this is a major step in our long-term strategy of growing our presence in North America,” said Paul Woods, regional executive, North America, Alter Domus.

“IPS shares the same focus on quality and client service which have both been at the core of Alter Domus’ own success over the years. Through the acquisition, IPS clients will now have access to the unmatched expertise of our 2,700 employees around the world who not only specialise in private equity but bring industry-leading expertise in real estate and private debt markets as well.”

All IPS Fund Services employees will join Alter Domus and report to Woods, who joined Alter Domus in July from State Street.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for IPS and our employees, and we are excited to provide our clients with a global, vertically integrated suite of fund administration services, technology and expertise,” said Rob Herlihy, partner and founder at IPS Fund Services. “As Alter Domus, our team — including my co-founders John Dafulas and Ed Conway — will continue to deliver the highest quality services that we’ve long been recognised for.”

Alter Domus administers over $930 billion of assets on behalf of 80% of the largest private debt managers, real estate firms, and private equity houses globally.

In addition to the acquisition of IPS Fund Services, Alter Domus has invested heavily in its capabilities in the region, building new services, technology and expertise to support its growth ambitions in the US. In 2020 alone, Alter Domus increased its headcount in North America from 586 to 656 people, and now has 10 established offices in the region.

“With the acquisition of IPS Fund Services, we further solidify our North American presence, increasing our scale and capabilities significantly with an enhanced offering for clients locally and globally. In addition, IPS’s sophisticated client base will benefit from access to our world-class technology solutions, which provide cutting-edge asset servicing capabilities and data tools specifically tailored to private equity investors,” said Doug Hart, CEO, Alter Domus.

Alter Domus is backed by global investment firm, Permira. In 2018, Alter Domus acquired Cortland Capital Markets Services LLC, a leading US-based investment servicing company. The firm’s presence in North America grew further in 2020 with the opening of its Cayman Islands office.