Pay at BlueCrest: Even back office staff get $600k each
If you're working in an administrative role in the middle or back office of an investment bank, and wondering how you can increase your pay, there may be an answer. - Go and work for Mike Platt, the self-described richest man in the whole of finance, whose family office/former hedge fund BlueCrest Capital Management seems very generous to everyone who crosses its threshold.
BlueCrest has just filed some results for 2022 with Companies House in the UK. As might be expected of a secretive family institution, the results are an opaque assortment of interlinked companies and subsidiaries, some of which are based in the Cayman Islands. Two main entities stand out, however: BC Capital Management Services, which is about the provision of "office infrastructure and employment services" to the main partnership and investing entity, BlueCrest Capital Management (UK) LLP.
BC Capital Management Services is where all the operations, technology, risk and compliance staff sit. It's been growing: in 2022, it hired 28 people, bringing the total to 278. Excluding employers' national insurance, BC Capital Management Services spent £132m paying them, which works out at...£476k ($604k) each.
This isn't bad for anyone, anywhere, and especially for anyone in risk management or operations. Predictably, however, it is a lot less than the amount BlueCrest Capital Management (UK) LLP paid its 45 London partners last year. They received a total of £103m in salaries and bonuses and £53m in profit share, making an average of £3.5m ($4.4m) each.
Given that overall pay is likely to be skewed towards founder Mike Platt and that two of the partners are corporate entities, some individual partners will have received less than this. Even so, BlueCrest, which pays circa 30% of pnl to its portfolio managers, clearly deserves its reputation for generosity, and Mike Platt evidently deserves his claim to be so, so rich.
How do you get to work for BlueCrest? Platt's UK partners include 30-year-olds like James Liu, a Cambridge University graduate and ex-JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs government bond trader, Utkarsh Narayan, a Carnegie Mellon graduate who worked in rates trading at Citigroup, and Thomas Ogilvie, an Exeter University graduate who began life trading oil for BP.
Platt himself is the undisputed king of BlueCrest. “Essentially we have one client, which is Mike,” Nicholas Moore, a former portfolio manager at BlueCrest, reportedly told investigators in a tax case last year. “He is the CEO, he’s the CIO.”
Platt, who comes from Preston in Northern England and is the son of a teacher and a university administrator, was raised in Preston in northwestern England. He likes private jets. He also likes to hire a certain kind of person. He's quoted in the 2012 book “Hedge Fund Market Wizards,” where the Financial Times says Platt declared that he looks for the kind of person who gets up at “seven o’clock on Sunday morning when his kids are still in bed, and logs on to a poker site so that he can pick off the US drunks coming home on Saturday night.”
Not many of those people seem to be women. By our reckoning, only five of BlueCrest's 43 human partners in London are female.
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