Ireland: The New Manager Landscape

Last Updated: 2 October 2019
Article by Andrew Dean

Economic headwinds, spread volatility and intense competition for loans in a shrinking primary market are perfectly rational reasons to conclude that launching a debut CLO today would be a brave step, however 25 (18 percent) of the 141 managers that have issued a US CLO since January 2018 were new entrants to the market, creating a healthy and diverse landscape that offers investors choice and the opportunity to pinpoint a manager whose investment style and background matches their investment objectives.

There is no doubt that successfully launching a CLO platform comes with significant challenges but the rewards would appear to be worth the risks and the effort given the continued flow of new managers entering the market.  One of the main obstacles to launching a CLO platform is sourcing the equity; unless the manager has access to its own source of funding, be it intra group or from other managed funds, they are required to seek backing from a third party investor who is willing to write an equity cheque and who is committed to do so for at least a few deals.

New managers target a minimum of three or four deals to build a track record. Finding that level of early investment commitment has proven particularly challenging according to some of the newer managers that we have spoken to who are all too aware of the catch 22 scenario whereby investors want to see that track record in place before deciding to invest. New entrants recognise that this makes launching a CLO platform extremely difficult because investors are reluctant to invest in an unproven manager where style and performance is unknown and because, more significantly, new managers invariably pay a wider spread penalty in comparison to seasoned managers and often need to compromise in other areas such as management fees, to get their first deals away. Other challenges exist in terms of finding the collateral in this mature and highly competitive market. Investors legitimately want to know whether new managers will have the traction to demand allocations when desirable loans are issued. New entrants look to negate these barriers by making key strategic hires from within the CLO market to leverage off existing relationships and experience to bolster credibility in the market.

The appetite however is apparent as we continue to see new managers enter the market. For new managers to be successful, and to attract outside investment and hopefully that key anchor investor who is able to commit to the first three or more deals, they need to be determined and have formulated and be able to communicate a clear strategy for launching their platform. With the volatility currently present in the primary market, part of the conundrum for new managers is trying to time the market in terms of both issuing the transaction and getting investors lined up and ready. They look to have a management and operations structure in place and fully operational and show a long term deal strategy and vision so that they can launch aggressively when the time is right.

This influx of new managers to the market, including the return in the past couple of years to primary of managers that have not issued a new deal since before the financial crisis, augers well for the sector as it continues to demonstrate faith in the CLO product. Reasons for entering the CLO market vary depending upon the types of entrant, be they hedge funds, existing middle market lenders seeing an opportunity to create their own CLO platform, managers created from a buyout situation, insurance firms or a well-established investment firm which sees an opportunity to put some capital to work and to get a better rate of return than they might currently be achieving elsewhere.

Some interesting statistics emerge when you start to break down activity between US and EU markets.

  • 88% of all CLO Managers have issued in the US  CLO market
  • 53% of all CLO Managers have only issued in the  US BSL CLO market
  • 19% of all CLO Managers are middle market  CLO Managers
    • 67% of managers who have issued a middle market CLO have also issued a BSL US CLO
    • 30% of managers who have issued a middle market CLO have also issued a BSL US CLO and EU CLO.

While some may argue that the decade long expansion is coming close to the end and we are at an advanced stage in the credit cycle, there has not been any real slowdown in the rate of new CLO entrants.

Regardless of the particular circumstances, any new manager in the CLO space will clearly need to be looking ahead to its next couple of deals. It is never a case of issuing one deal to see how it goes.  A new manager will need a solid plan, ideally with three to five deals locked in, coupled with a clear management style and strategy that investors can understand and buy into.  Furthermore, the structure put in place will often depend upon their funding situation, be it via internal group funding or third party anchor equity investor.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

In association with
Related Topics
Related Articles
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of

To Use you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions