Blue Sand Securities was built on the belief that investment talent and sound ethical practices are the cornerstones of institutional investment success. These values have helped Blue Sand raise over $12 Billion in assets for our client funds. The Blue Sand team speaks or meets with 100+ prospective managers annually and from those selects only a handful of new funds to work with each year. 20 years of successful hedge fund capital-raising has shaped the firm to be well-attuned to market nuance and attentive to detail, so we recognize when a fund has an interesting strategy or approach. We uncover uncorrelated managers who produce alpha, have intriguing risk vs. reward profiles, and who are off the beaten path of most investors. We’re matchmakers in the marketing world and seek to bring together superior investment talent and investors seeking to allocate to unique strategies. Our targeted marketing approach cuts through the noise in the alternative space. Our team brings together the relevant industry experience and passion of seasoned partners, sophisticated fund of funds analysts, compliance experts, and dedicated alternative asset marketers.
Our new manager deal flow comes from many sources including existing and former clients, personal and professional referrals, service providers and capital introduction groups, and existing investors. Most of our fund agreements outline an exclusive long-term relationship with an emerging or midsized manager who seeks to transition from being a boutique friends and family funded organization, to an institutional-caliber investment manager. Blue Sand's interests are aligned with those of the fund manager - we are paid solely on a success basis. With no upfront or retainer fees, we earn a percentage of the fees generated on assets we raise.
We’ve spent 20+ years establishing deep relationships with sophisticated institutional investors including Private Banks, Family Offices, Endowments, Foundations, Pension Funds, Consultants, Insurance Companies, Investment Advisors, and Fund of Funds. Carefully cultivating ongoing relationships enables us to tailor the marketing strategy to investors who have expressed an interest in a particular strategy. Pre-qualifying investors adds value on both sides of the relationship: for the fund manager by ensuring that marketing trips are productive and efficient, and for the investor by introducing relevant and appropriate investment opportunities.
MARKETING MATERIALS AND BRANDING
In addition to fund raising activities, Blue Sand can assist in the refinement of key marketing documents such as investor presentations, one-pagers, and due diligence materials. Although most of this work is done at the inception of our relationship with a fund, these materials may be updated and continuously improved throughout the marketing process. Blue Sand also works with the manager from the outset of the relationship to enhance the marketing pitch and presence based on many factors including investor feedback, to position them for continued success.
Blue Sand's principals have 50+ years of collective experience in alternative assets fundraising, and as successful private entrepreneurs. This puts us in a position to counsel fund managers for maximum effectiveness. Advice on prospective seed investment deals, business planning, compensation issues, partnership relationships, and potential hires are all ancillary benefits of working with Blue Sand.
REGISTERED REPRESENTATIVE PLATFORM
In addition to its core business of raising capital for private funds, Blue Sand offers a platform for like-minded entrepreneurial Registered Representatives. These are usually individuals who don’t have the infrastructure or capital to create their own Broker Dealer but require a platform to license and support them in the market. Our firm provides the infrastructure of due diligence, compliance, and business development, as well as other optional consulting services. We carefully screen prospects including running complete background checks and they receive the same compliance onboarding, training, and ongoing supervision as our internal team. This arrangement allows external affiliates to leverage our experience and resources so they can focus on raising capital for their mandates.
Michael Cooney - Managing Partner
With 18 years of hedge fund industry experience, Michael began his career as an institutional hedge fund investor. Identifying an opportunity, he built a marketing firm that could source and represent leading hedge fund talent, and align them with the strategic priorities of institutional investors. Raising over $6 billion from investors for Blue Sand’s hand-picked hedge fund clients, he’s primarily responsible for sourcing and diligencing new managers. Prior to forming Blue Sand Securities, Michael was President of Visitalk.com, a private Internet Infrastructure company that raised $45 million and was banked by Goldman Sachs and Wit Capital. During his previous tenure as Senior Research Analyst for Citigroup's Alternative Investment Strategies, Fund of Fund assets under management grew from $100 Million to over $2.5 Billion. Michael holds an MBA Administration from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Reed College. Michael also holds the Series 7, 24, 66, 79, and 99 Securities Licenses.
Nelson Cooney - Managing Partner
Responsible for managing the marketing efforts of the firm, Nelson sources quality hedge fund managers and has raised several billion dollars from institutional investors in the US and Europe. Prior to Blue Sand, Nelson founded and ran VentureGov Group, a strategic business development firm that supported leading venture-backed technology companies in selling products to the federal government. Prior to VentureGov, Nelson was co-founder and Managing Partner of Milestone Equity Partners, a national network of technology incubators that successfully exited several companies including Limelight Networks (NASDAQ: LLNW) a leading content delivery network, and Plaxo, an online address book that was founded by Sean Parker and sold to Comcast in 2008. Nelson began his career in politics, first working as a presidential appointee for George H.W. Bush. He worked under Bill Bennett at the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), then as a staff member of the President's Drug Advisory Council. He left politics to serve as the President of Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA), a large national nonprofit group that supported community based efforts to reduce teen drug use. Nelson departed CADCA to co-found the Fidelis Group, a consulting firm that provided strategy and leadership development services to Fortune 500 companies, tech start-ups and national nonprofit groups. Nelson holds a Master’s degree in Public Policy from Georgetown University after being selected for the prestigious Bryce Harlow scholarship, and B.A. in Political Science from the University of South Carolina (USC), where he was a scholarship athlete playing four years of varsity soccer He holds the Series 7, 24, 63, and 79 Securities Licenses.
Shannon Crotty - Chief Compliance Officer / CFO
Shannon is responsible for all compliance related functions of the Broker Dealer, building and maintaining the firm’s investor files, and anti-money laundering compliance for new investments. Additionally, she is responsible for the majority of the financial management aspects of the firm and works closely with the firm’s FINOP and accountant to produce the firm’s financial statements and yearly audit reports. Shannon is continually working to improve the firm’s policies and procedures in accordance with industry best practices to comply with FINRA requirements. Prior to joining Blue Sand, Shannon was the Vice President of Operations at Stonehaven, LLC, a FINRA registered Broker Dealer focused on raising assets for hedge funds. Prior to Stonehaven, Shannon worked at UNX, Inc. directly under Matthew Michelson, Vice President of the Board at UNX and co-founder of Stonehaven. Prior to working for UNX, Shannon was a Public Relations Account Representative at Mentus, a Marketing and Public Relations firm focused on the Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Industries. Shannon holds a J.D., graduating Cum Laude from the University Of Baltimore School Of Law, a B.S. in Biology from Bucknell University, and holds the Series 7, 24, 63, 79 and 99 Securities Licenses.
Drew Davis - Director
Drew is responsible for raising assets for the firm's hedge fund clients from institutional investors, including Fund of Funds, Family Offices, Endowments, and Foundations. Prior to joining Blue Sand, Drew was a corporate finance and securities lawyer with Lawson Lundell LLP, a leading law firm in Western Canada. Drew earned both his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and J.D. from the University of Victoria. Drew holds his Series 7 & 63 Securities licenses.
Jeffrey Heller - FINOP
Prior to Blue Sand, Jeff worked as a Senior Accountant for Arthur Young & Co (now Ernst & Young). He’s been a Principal at his own CPA firm since 1988, and acts as accountant and FINOP for several clients, including Broker Dealers registered with FINRA. Jeff holds an M.B.A. in Accounting from Rutgers Graduate School and a B.A. in Economics from Rutgers College. Jeff holds his Series 27, 28 and 99 Securities Licenses.