Alt Goes Mainstream: The Latest on Alternative Investments, WealthTech, & Private Markets

Welcome back to the Alt Goes Mainstream podcast.

Today’s episode takes us inside the world of wealth from the perspective of one of the industry’s largest alternative asset managers.

We are joined by Sean Connor, President & CEO, Global Private Wealth at Blue Owl Capital, a firm with over $160B in AUM. 

Sean highlighted a number of key insights for navigating and working with the wealth channel as he shared lessons learned from building a successful private wealth business at a large alternative asset manager.

Sean is responsible for bringing the breadth of the Blue Owl investment platform to the global private wealth market. He’s at the forefront of Blue Owl’s private wealth initiatives globally and oversees fund formation, product structure innovation, capital raising, and client servicing. He also oversees business development, marketing, and operations for Private Wealth at the firm. Prior to his current role, Sean was one of the first employees at Owl Rock (now the Direct Lending division of Blue Owl) and was responsible for building out the private wealth business.

Prior to joining Blue Owl and Owl Rock, Sean served as a Managing Director of CION Investment Management for over 10 years. Sean was a member of CION’s Investment Committee and was responsible for all aspects of CION’s business including originating, underwriting, negotiating, and corporate finance transactions globally. In 2020, Sean was recognized by Private Debt Investor as one of the industry’s Rising Stars.

Sean and I had a fascinating conversation about what it’s like to work with the wealth channel. We discussed:
  • How and why it’s so difficult to work with the wealth channel.
  • Why the wealth channel is not a new phenomenon, yet why it’s still relatively untapped in terms of alternative asset managers understanding how to work with the wealth channel.
  • How Blue Owl’s wealth business works across its three different investment platforms.
  • Why scale matters in certain areas of private markets.
  • Why the wealth channel is not one channel, but rather an agglomeration of different customer types and geographies.
  • How the market is evolving where a one-stop-shop type firm may be how much of the wealth channel interacts with private markets.
  • What it means for distribution professionals to understand their client and the daily demands of a wealth manager's business when educating the wealth channel on alternatives products.
  • Why education of the wealth channel should focus more on holistic education and less on selling product.
  • Why the wealth channel matters when it comes to alternative asset managers acquiring other alternative asset managers.
Thanks Sean for coming on the Alt Goes Mainstream podcast to share such actionable and thoughtful insights on how firms can work with wealth.

What is Alt Goes Mainstream: The Latest on Alternative Investments, WealthTech, & Private Markets?

Alt Goes Mainstream podcast is the place to turn to for interviews with some of the brightest and most experienced minds in the world of alternative investing, private equity (PE), venture capital (VC), real estate, crypto, collectibles and more. For anyone looking to invest into alternative assets (from experienced wealth managers to family offices to the individual investor looking for a more diversified investment portfolio), you’ll hear inside stories from executives and founders at some of the world’s largest financial institutions, alternative investment firms, and FinTech startups. More than a personal finance podcast, Alt Goes Mainstream dives deep into trends, investment strategies, firm building lessons, and innovative technologies that are enabling investors to access private markets and invest into alternative assets.