2021 PE Forecast: Potential Lasting Impact of the Pandemic on Fund Terms, Strategies and Compliance Practices (Part Two of Two)

The PE industry evolved over the course of 2020 to cope with the unexpected ramifications of the coronavirus pandemic and the market dislocation it caused. Some of those changes (e.g., the early dip in secondary transactions) are already beginning to fade and will dissipate further as the industry enters 2021. Others are likely to remain, however, such as the increased use of co‑investment programs and the SEC’s focus on managers’ operational proficiencies. Any sponsor that gets out ahead of those issues will be in the best position to ensure that this year will be better than the last. To assist sponsors with preparing for what to expect in 2021, the Private Equity Law report interviewed Schulte Roth & Zabel partners Stephanie R. Breslow and Marc E. Elovitz. This second article in a two-part series details specific fund terms and practices that are likely to persist in 2021, along with compliance practices sponsors need to adopt to endure heightened SEC scrutiny under the Biden administration. The first article forecasted the potential tone and focus of examinations by the SEC’s Division of Examinations – formerly the Office of Compliance Inspections and Enforcement, or OCIE – in the new year, as well as how potential rule changes could affect PE sponsors. For additional commentary from Schulte attorneys, see “How Fund Managers Can Prepare for SEC Remote Examinations During the Coronavirus Pandemic” (Sep. 1, 2020); and “What Role Should the GC or CCO Play in the Audit of a Fund’s Financial Statements?” (Feb. 4, 2020).

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