M2O hires Triago associates in continued LP push

Four months after bringing on Jake Stuiver from Evercore to build out the strategy, the firm continues to devote resources to the LP side of the market amid the post-covid rebound.

White Plains, New York-based M2O Private Fund Advisors has hired two associate-level secondaries professionals to continue its buildout of the LP side of the business. It also recently hired a principal for the GP-facing business.

The firm, whose secondaries business is led by former Credit Suisse secondaries head Mike Custar, has hired Michael Ballou and Juan Mendez. The pair worked together on LP secondary-advisory mandates at Triago, a boutique secondaries intermediary, according to a statement seen exclusively by Secondaries Investor.

Ballou started on 1 June and Mendez will follow on 14 June. Together they advised on over $3 billion of volume with Triago, according to the statement.

They will join the unit formed under principal Jake Stuiver, whom Secondaries Investor reported joined from Evercore in February of this year to build the LP business alongside the existing GP-led practice.

With these hires, the LP-facing M2O secondaries team grows to six, while the team at large grows to 10. This includes last week’s hire of David Krueger as principal by way of Eaton Partners to focus on the GP side of things, according to Stuiver.

Q2 was the firm’s first full quarter of operation in the LP side of the market. Since Stuiver’s arrival, the firm has done four deals – slated to close 30 June and worth $400 million – and has five processes launching for a Q3 close worth nearly $2 billion in volume, according to the statement.

LP sales volume fell in 2020 to account for 47 percent of the $60 billion in deal volume, compared with 67 percent a year prior, according to Evercore’s Secondary Market Survey Results dated January.

In its Global Secondary Market Review also dated January, Greenhill & Co predicted for 2021 a “continued rebound in transaction volume driven by increased sponsor-led activity and the resurgence of LP sales. We would not be surprised if the market finally crosses the $100 [billion] mark.”

And a projected slowdown in distributions and delayed portfolio management exercises will likely act as a further catalyst on the LP side, according to Greenhill.

Activity in the secondaries advisory space remains frenetic. Jefferies, from which M2O spun out, hired Guggenheim Partners’ secondaries team last month after enticing a team from Greenhill in February. Aviditi Advisors, Goldman Sachs and Rothschild & Co are among those to plant a flag in the advisory market over the past 12 months, Secondaries Investor reported.

M2O, which stands for “made to order”, provides fundraising, secondaries advisory, direct placement and strategic advisory services. The firm has advised on more than 50 transactions representing $15 billion since 2012, according to the statement.

This article was updated to include news of Krueger’s hire and to include the correct size of M2O’s secondaries team