Nicola Wealth Management Ltd. tapped Robert Olsen as vice chair of its private capital team as the Canadian firm tries to build up a larger business in alternative assets.
(Bloomberg) — Nicola Wealth Management Ltd. tapped Robert Olsen as vice chair of its private capital team as the Canadian firm tries to build up a larger business in alternative assets.
Olsen will join the Vancouver-based firm in January with a mandate to expand its offering of private-capital funds and hire more people, Chief Financial Officer Bijal Patel said in an interview.
Nicola’s private capital group manages about C$3 billion ($2.2 billion) across private equity, venture capital, private credit, mortgages and infrastructure assets, Patel said. The group was created in early 2021, pulling together some existing funds under one unit with four people. Now, Nicola has 22 and is planning to add around 11 more over the next 12 to 18 months, he said, including a senior private equity executive in Toronto.
“Institutional investors have been interested in alternative assets, but now we are seeing a lot of interest from high-net-worth investors wanting to access that, too,” Patel said.
Olsen is coming from Deloitte, where he’s been leader of its Canadian private equity advisory business. Prior to joining that firm in 2009, Olsen worked for Goldman Sachs, where he helped start and lead its balance-sheet investing business for Canada, placing bets on senior, mezzanine and second-lien debt. He’s also a former amateur boxer who represented Canada, according to his LinkedIn profile.
Patel sees the private capital group reaching C$5 billion in assets under management in the next three years.
“As we get there, there’s things we can do differently. We’ll have to monitor on a more efficient basis, so we’ll bring in some portfolio people to do more stress-testing and help us make sure we’ve got all the data that we need,” Patel said.
Olsen will also help Nicola, which has C$13.9 billion under management, expand in the private equity secondaries market, where firms can buy pieces of existing funds from other investors. Nicola sees good opportunities to buy assets from pension funds and other general partners, Patel said.
More stories like this are available on bloomberg.com
©2023 Bloomberg L.P.