New alts venture for former Permal and EnTrust investment duo

Tulsa, Oklahoma-based Jackson Hole Capital Partners announced the launch of an alternative investment platform that will be managed by Permal and EnTrust investment chiefs Robert Kaplan and Christopher Keenan.

The pair join as managing partners and are working on a platform focused on proprietary sourced direct and co-investments in equity and debt markets. The alternative offerings will be through a mix of new single purpose vehicles as well as more diversified closed-end investment portfolios.

“We see this as a really exciting opportunity to build an alternatives business,” added Kaplan. “I am delighted to be back with Chris and John and focusing on longer-duration investments, where we have many years of investing experience, both at Permal and EnTrust. We are looking for opportunities that provide idiosyncratic returns with less exposure or reliance on the overall directionality of equity and credit markets, which we believe is increasingly important particularly in the current market environment.”

Kaplan was previously senior managing director and member of the EnTrustPermal Global Investment Committee, and before that served as chief investment officer at Permal Group, a fund of hedge fund firm that managed roughly $40 billion at its height. Keenan, meanwhile, was a senior managing director and co-head of global investments in addition to being a member of the EnTrust Permal Global Investment Committee.  He also led the firm’s $8 billion co-investment program.

“As we continue to develop Jackson Hole Capital Partners, the move into alternatives is the natural next step,” said John Hastings, managing partner and founder. “Investors are not simply looking for traditional equity and bond portfolios, they want broader diversification in public as well as private markets.”

Hastings added that he sees investors as being willing to trade some liquidity for a more attractive opportunity set. Bringing the ex-Permal pair on board as partners he said was a major coup for the firm.

Hastings and Channing Smith founded Jackson Hole Capital Partners in 2017 in partnership with the Biolchini Family of Tulsa, who own Vast Bank in Oklahoma and Bank of Jackson Hole in Wyoming. The addition of alternatives broadens the firm’s product offerings and, with the new managing partners, extends the geographical reach into New York and Park City.

“The addition of an alternatives arm is a transformative move for Jackson Hole Capital Partners and broadens the firm’s reach far beyond Tulsa and Wyoming,” added Tom Biolchini, Jackson Hole Capital Partners Board Member, Chairman of Vast Bank and Vice Chairman of Bank of Jackson Hole. “As a family office investor, we are always looking for new investment ideas and see some of the best opportunities in the alternatives space.”

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