Boston-Based Cadence Capital Management and its CEO – Mike Skillman

Cadence Capital Management is a boutique-style investment firm based in Boston, Massachusetts. Mike Skillman, who joined Cadence in 1994, now serves as the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director on their investment team. Here, he tells CEO Today about the history of the company, its business strategy and overcoming the inevitable hurdles involved in delivering services.


Tell us a bit more about Cadence Capital Management – what is the history behind it? What are the principal services the company provides?

Cadence Capital serves large scale institutions, mutual funds, and privately pooled investments with an array of disciplined equity strategies. We have an investment team with an average of 25 years of industry experience and an average of 10 years at Cadence. In the past year, we have added several new faces to our investment and marketing teams, all of whom have brought fresh and exciting ideas to our office.

Cadence is a subsidiary of Pacific Life, but operates as an independent investment advisor out of Boston.

What is the company’s business strategy?

At Cadence, we work to preserve our past accomplishments while keeping an eye on the future. Our strategies look towards long-term performance goals rather than focusing on short-term returns or relying on current market forecasts. It is a true “eye on the prize” mentality that we are proud to use. Our innovative, global-strategies include Strategic Beta and Growth Equity Solutions, which are designed to act meaningfully different than market benchmarks. We approach investments with a common-sense mentality and work to combine the benefits of traditional active and passive management. These solutions are offered at a low cost to allow for flexible investing at a rate that will not deeply cut into client profit margins.

How are you developing new strategies and ways to help your clients?

Recently, we launched several Strategic Beta strategies, in an LP structure to offer investors an efficient vehicle to access global opportunities without having to expand their own global custody network. Each client’s needs and wants are considered when tailoring and managing their funds. This level of engagement with our clients forges a true partnership mentality.

How do you tailor your services to the needs of each individual client?

At Cadence, we listen to our clients and keep their unique investment needs in mind when building their portfolio. Our products can be bundled to work alongside other investments or to act as a stand-alone exposure. For our Strategic Beta efforts, we work with clients to pinpoint the factors that will best serve their needs. This personalization allows investors achieve diversification while retaining a focused yet balanced portfolio.   Alongside the investment process, we also work with clients to create customized reporting that fits their monthly, quarterly, and annual needs.

Are there at times challenges involved in delivering services? Do you have any examples?

There has been a tremendous change in the way investors seek to capture equity returns.  An acute focus on lowering costs and reducing the risk of underperforming an index has let do a massive shift in assets from traditional active to passive management.

Our newer strategies, seek to meet the needs for lower costs and more predictable outcomes while offering the potential to achieve returns in excess of the market index over a long period of time.

How would you evaluate your role as the CEO in the past few years?

It has always been about people. We have had to adapt to a changing market environment while still adding value for our clients.  Additionally, we have had to seek ways to be creative in how we grow so that we can continue to retain our key team members and attract new talent in the future. I’m happy that we have been able to evolve as an organization.

What would you say differentiates Cadence Capital Management from its competitors?

The aspect that really makes Cadence stand out is our team mentality and commitment to clients. Our investment team combines our expertise to provide the highest level of service for the products we offer. The Strategic Beta and Growth Equity Solutions may be different in concept, but they both benefit from the pooled knowledge of our entire company working behind them. Being boutique-sized also means that we can give our clients the type of one-on-one relationship that they deserve.  Direct lines of access are provided from our investment team to clients. We don’t believe in creating barriers or red tape for communications. Transparency and cost efficiency are key in providing the best products possible.



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