Joseph A. Smith represents private equity fund sponsors in connection with fund formation, the acquisition of portfolio investments and the implementation of exit strategies. In this capacity, Joe advises clients on securities, governance, ERISA, Investment Advisers Act and structural issues. He has extensive regulatory expertise, and wide-ranging experience with all alternative asset classes, including LBO funds, venture capital and later-stage growth equity funds, energy and infrastructure funds, credit funds, real estate funds and joint ventures, fund restructurings and other complex secondary transactions, and funds of funds. Joe has also represented many fund managers in connection with spinoffs and consolidations.

In addition to domestic representations, Joe has advised private equity clients in connection with the acquisition and structuring of portfolio investments throughout Europe, Latin America and Asia. His representation of asset managers in the real estate sector includes advice concerning REIT offerings and privatizations, partnership roll-ups and cross-border investments. Joes clients include Arel Capital, Coller Capital, DRA Advisors, DuPont Capital Management, Fort Washington Investment Advisors, GE Asset Management (now State Street Global Advisors), Harbert Management Corporation, Hemisfério Sul Investimentos, Intel, Investors Diversified Realty, Kotak Mahindra Group, LCN Capital Partners, Mauá Capital, Ram Realty Services, REAL Infrastructure Partners, Royalton Partners, Value4Capital, VCFA Group, Vortus Investments and Westport Capital Partners. Joe has been recognized as a leading practitioner by Chambers Global, Chambers USA, Expert Guide to the World’s Leading Banking, Finance and Transactional Law Lawyers, The Legal 500 US and New York Super Lawyers. Most recently, Joe was quoted by Private Equity International in the article “LPAs: Finding the Right Balance” and by Private Funds Management in the article “Ringing the Changes.” Joe co-authored the “United States Fundraising” chapter in The Private Equity Review (Law Business Research Ltd.) and he contributed to the Fund Formation and Incentives Report (Private Equity International in association with SRZ). 

Publications

Private Equity Funds: Formation and Operation (Practising Law Institute), 2018-2019 (contributor)

“Best Quotes  Fund Managers and Investors Had Plenty to Say About Private Equity in 2017,” Private Equity International Annual Review 2017, January 2018 (quoted)

“LPAs: Finding the Right Balance,” Private Equity International, January 2018 (co-author)

“Seizing the Moment,” Private Funds Management, November 2017 (interview)

“Consolidation Within PE Creates Opportunity For Attys,” Law360, October 2017 (quoted)

“Managing Conflicts,” Private Funds Management, May 2017 (interview)

“Ringing the Changes,” Private Funds Management, November 2016 (interview)

“United States Fundraising,” The Private Equity Review (Law Business Research Ltd.), 2014-2017 (co-author)

Contributor, Fund Formation and Incentives Report (Private Equity International in association with SRZ), April 2014

“Private Equity Goes Public,” Euromoney Hedge Funds & Alternative Investments Handbook, 2007

“What Advisers Need to Know,” The 2007 Guide to Private Equity and Venture Capital, 2007

“ERISA’s New ‘25 Percent’ Test — What’s in it for Private Equity Fund Sponsors and Institutional Investors?,” Venture Capital and Private Equity Yearbook 2006/07 Euromoney Yearbooks, 2006

“The Benefits of Side Car Funds Explained,” The 2006 Guide to Private Equity and Venture Capital, 2006

“REITs and Private Equity Funds,” Venture Capital and Private Equity Yearbook 2005/06 Euromoney Yearbooks, 2005

“Structuring Funds for US Pension Investors — What is a VCOC, Anyway?,” Financier Worldwide Private Equity & Venture Capital Review, 2004

“Successful Secondaries: The Importance of an Integrated Understanding of Private Equity,” Financier Worldwide Private Equity & Venture Capital Review, 2004

Speaking Engagements

“State of the Industry,” SRZ 7th Annual Private Equity Fund Conference, New York, May 2019

“Crisis Management,” SRZ 28th Annual Private Investment Funds Seminar, New York, January 2019

“Keynote Fireside Chat,” Markets Group Private Equity Europe Forum, London, September 2018

“Open For Business!,” IMN 7th Annual Real Estate CFO & COO Forum (East), New York, May 2018

“State of the Industry,” SRZ 6th Annual Private Equity Fund Conference, New York, May 2018

“Key Considerations in Drafting Fund Agreements, Including Exculpation and Indemnification Provisions,” IBA 19th Annual International Conference on Private Investment Funds, March 2018

New York City Bar Private Equity Structuring: The Basics, February 2018

“The Financial Realities of New Europe — Impacts of the US Election and Brexit,” Luxembourg-American Chamber of Commerce, New York, September 2017

“Industry Update: Fundraising Environment,” SRZ 5th Annual Private Equity Fund Conference, New York, May 2017

“Recent Developments in Fund Structuring Terms,” NYCBA Private Equity Structuring: The Basics, New York, January 2017

“Specialty Investment Strategies and Niche Sectors,” FocusPoint Private Capital Group Third Annual Alternative Investments Summit, New York, January 2017

“Industry Trends: A Manager and Investor Perspective,” SRZ 26th Annual Private Investment Funds Seminar, New York, January 2017

“Fund Terms,” SRZ 4th Annual Private Equity Fund Conference, May 2016

“Current Terms: Private Equity Funds,” IBA 17th Annual International Conference on Private Investment Funds, March 2016

“Negotiating and Understanding the Best Co-Investment Deal,” iGlobal Forum Co-Investment Summit, March 2016

“Private Equity, LP Comments and Concerns,” ALFI European Alternative Investment Funds Conference, January 2016

“Middle Market Opportunities,” FocusPoint Private Capital Group Alternative Investments Summit, December 2015

Moderator, “Keynote Interview: Successfully Navigating a Market Full of Capital,” iGlobal Forum 13th Global Real Estate Private Equity Summit, October 2015

SRZ and McLagan Trends in Compensation Plans for Alternative Asset Managers Seminar, June 2015

“Market Update,” SRZ 3rd Annual Private Equity Fund Conference, June 2015

“Getting Registered: SEC Compliance & Examinations,” GreenPearl Events WeiserMazars Real Estate CFO Summit, May 2015

“Investor Needs and Expectations,” SRZ London Investment Management Hot Topics, March 2015

Moderator, “Overview of the European Real Estate Fund Market: Current State and Trends Going Forward,” IMN15th Annual European Real Estate Opportunity Fund Forum, November 2014

“Private Equity Fund Compliance Update,” SRZ Webinar, July 2014

“Fundraising,” SRZ 2nd Annual Private Equity Fund Conference, June 2014

Moderator, “Industry Consolidation: What Is Happening That Is Not in the Headlines?,” IMN 15th Annual U.S. Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing Forum, June 2014

“Institutional Investor Perspective: Real Estate Investment & Risk Appetites; Where the Smart Money is Going; & What to Expect in 2014” and Moderator, “Tapping Opportunities Within New/Emerging Managers and Small Cap/Niche Funds: A ‘Why & How’ Guide for Institutional Investors by Institutional Investors,” IMN 11th Annual Winter Forum on Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing, January 2014

“Real Estate Funds and Ventures,” SRZ 23rd Annual Private Investment Funds Seminar, January 2014

“Private Equity — Which Trends are in the Driving Seat?,” Global Real Estate Institute 4th Annual Brazil GRI, November 2013

“Marketing: Fund Terms,” SRZ Private Equity: Fund and Deal Terms Conference, October 2013

“Current State & Future of Europe’s Real Estate Funds Business,” IMN 14th Annual European Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing Forum, October 2013

Moderator, “LP/GP Relations: The Fee, Promote, Incentive Debate,” IMN 14th Annual U.S. Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing Forum, May 2013

“AIFMD for EU and US Private Equity Fund Managers,” SRZ AIFM Directive: Requirements for Private Fund Managers Webinar Series, April 2013

“Recent Developments in Secondary Transactions and Funds,” IBA 14th Annual International Conference on Private Investment Funds, March 2013

“Fundraising: Aligning Interests; Notable Trends & Strategies for 2013,” IMN 10th Annual Winter Forum on Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing, January 2013

“Current Developments in the Secondary Market for Fund Interests,” SRZ 22nd Annual Private Investment Funds Seminar, January 2013

“Private Equity Fund Managers: Developments in Marketing, Compliance and SEC Exams,” SRZ Investment Management Hot Topics, November 2012

“State of the Industry,” IMN European Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing Forum, October 2012 

“Meeting Private Equity Real Estate Fundraising Challenges,” iGlobal Forum 7th Real Estate Private Equity Summit, October 2012 

“LP/GP Relations: What are Today’s Hot Negotiation Points,” IMN 2012 U.S. Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing Forum, May 2012

“Fundraising 2011: The Anatomy of Successful Fundraising Today,” IMN 8th Annual Winter Forum on Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing Forum, January 2011

“State and Future of the Real Estate Fund Business,” IMN 11th Annual European Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing Forum, November 2010

“Building Successful Long Term Relationships with Local LPs Through Improved Communication, Greater Transparency & Real Results,” SuperReturn Middle East 2010 Conference, October 2010

“LP/GP Relations,” IMN 11th Annual US Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing Forum, June 2010

“Re-Structuring Contracts For Secondary Transactions To Minimise Pricing Differences,” Capital Creation Secondaries Conference, May 2010

“Investing in Illiquid Strategies,” Brasil Investment Summit, April 2010

“Best Practices Guide to Managing the LP-GP Relationship” and “Non-US Markets: Fund Strategy & Performance; Investment Opportunities; Investor Appetite,” IMN 7th Annual Winter Forum on Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing, January 2010

“Keynote Panel: FoF Executive Forum,” Private Equity Brazil Summit, December 2009

“The Current State & Future of Real Estate Fund Industry,” IMN 10th Annual European Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing Forum, November 2009

“Routes to Market: Private Equity, Secondary Markets and Funds-of-Funds Real Estate Investing,” Ninth Annual U.S. Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing Forum, May 2008

“Structuring for Overseas Real Estate Investments,” Eighth Annual U.S. Real Estate Opportunity and Private Fund Investing Forum, May 2007

“Fund Formation: What are the Issues Involved in Creating a New Fund?,” Seventh Annual European Real Estate Opportunity and Private Fund Investing Forum, November 2006

“Organizing for Success,” Trends in Global Private Equity Investment, October 2004

“ERISA Structuring to Attract Benefit Plan Investors,” Private Equity: Fund Formation and Investment Activities, January 2003

“Global Private Equity Investing,” Current Legal Issues: Corporate Responsibility and Investor Confidence Client CLE Conference, September 2002

“Consequences of Registration Under the Investment Advisers Act,” National Association of Real Estate Investment Managers Senior Legal Officer Discussion Forum, May 1999

Memberships

  • American Bar Association
  • New York City Bar Association
  • Queen Elizabeth II Garden at Hanover Square
  • Directorship: Theatre for a New Audience (1990-2000)

Distinctions

  • Chambers Global
  • Chambers USA
  • Expert Guide to the World’s Leading Banking, Finance and Transactional Law Lawyers (Investment Funds, Private Equity)
  • The Legal 500 US
  • New York Super Lawyers

Prior Experience

  • Global Chair of Private Equity, Dewey & LeBoeuf
  • Chair of Private Equity, Dewey Ballantine