The guide is designed to help investment managers understand and compare a range of potential investment vehicles so they can target additional growth opportunities in light of investors’ increasing demand for flexible product packaging options.

SEI created the guide with the help of several distribution consultants and legal experts in the US and Europe. The guide details the key features of a range of investment vehicles, including the regulatory, operational, and distribution requirements of each.

Among the vehicles outlined are US mutual funds; exchange-traded funds (ETFs); undertakings for collective investment in transferable securities (UCITS); private funds, including those available only to qualified purchasers; collective investment trusts (CITs); separate accounts; closed-end funds; Irish qualified investment funds (QIF); and UK open-end investment companies (OEIC).

The guide’s inspiration comes from a trend SEI has labeled the Era of the Investor. The Era of the Investor represents a shift in power from investment managers to investors and their representatives, and is reflected in the fact that investor input has significantly increased how managers package their investment strategies.

Moreover, the online guide will be updated periodically based on regulatory and other industry developments. The guide was created by the SEI knowledge partnership, which provides ongoing business intelligence to SEI’s investment manager clients.

Phil Masterson, managing director in investment manager services division at SEI, said: “In the ‘Era of the Investor,’ managers are focused more than ever on alpha generation activities and are becoming agnostic as to how their investment expertise is packaged. This guide is intended to help managers begin the decision process on what product packages will best help them meet investor needs while targeting new growth opportunities. In addition, the guide is consistent with SEI’s approach of providing clients with solutions regardless of how they package their investment strategies.”