With a newly updated valuation of over $1 billion, alternative investment platform CAIS has officially reached unicorn status. The firm received $225 million in capital in a funding round led by alternative asset manager Apollo and PE investor Motive Partners; investment manager Franklin Templeton also provided additional cash. Apollo will be represented on CAIS' board of directors by Managing Director in Financial Services and Strategy Andrew Gosden, while Blythe Masters, Partner, will be appointed on behalf of Motive.
CAIS Chief Technology Officer Shane Williams said that the firm will use this latest funding to enhance its client experience and cut down on administrative tasks for advisors. The idea is to "jump beyond automation" with areas of development including distributed ledger technology and decentralized finance tools. The simplification of the alternatives purchasing process is a use case presenting an excellent opportunity for CAIS to show off its problem-solving capabilities.
CAIS may have acquisitions as well as "international strategic partnerships" in its game plan, according to Williams. There are also plans to significantly expand its technology team, which currently consists of 70 employees. The past year has seen CAIS enlarge its employee base from 75 to 156 staffers, and the firm hopes to hit 300 by the end of 2022.