A Biodiversity-Focused Boutique Preps More Strats For Q2 and Q3
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Tuesday, May 4, 2021

A Biodiversity-Focused Boutique Preps More Strats For Q2 and Q3

An environmentally-focused asset management entrepreneur is preparing to roll out several new strategies in the coming months.

Vicki Lynn Benjamin
Karner Blue Capital, LLC/font>
CEO, Co-Founder
"We're really hoping to get a lot of product out by the end of the quarter, if not the beginning of the third," Vicki Benjamin, CEO and co-founder of Karner Blue Capital [profile], tells MFWire. "The next iteration, of course, is aqua impact, and then maybe an overall environmental stewardship portfolio, with a little more sizzle."

New strategies will roll out as separately managed accounts to start with, Benjamin says.

The Bethesda, Maryland-based boutique's first SMA strategies debuted in 2018, and their inaugural mutual fund, the Karner Blue Biodiversity Impact Fund, launched in 2019.

"I've got a research platform that's scalable. I have trained people. I have distribution consultants, and we do some internal distribution," Benjamin says. "We're really the only biodiversity-centric product ... I see us developing a nature platform."

With help from a distribution consultant from the SRI and ESG world, the Karner Blue team is primarily marketing to foundations, "like-minded philanthropic institutions," and large family offices, Benjamin says.

Benjamin, who helped lead Calvert through the sale to Eaton Vance, now leads a team of 16 at Karner Blue (including several other Calvert alumni). She has industry-specific analysts doing academic research, and they're siloed from the fundamental management team of CFAs.

"Our size will allow us to scale. We're scalable for many assets," Benjamin says, adding, "There's always room for good people."

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