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    our business
    is uncovering
    & reducing all
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What We Do

We help institutional investors understand and reduce the costs of all their investment, both visible and hidden.

We tackle head on the problem of lack of cost transparency that leads to high investing costs and help our clients negotiate best-in-class fee structures. We aim to Reveal the true picture of where you are spending your money; Understand whether the expenditure adds value and whether it’s level is justifiable; and if necessary Act to reduce it.








We make transparent the entire cost chain, including suppliers used by your own service providers. By getting a full picture of costs, we can prevent service providers shifting costs from one area to another.

Forensic portfolio analysis

We have identified over 150 separate cost elements that need to be brought to light to get a comprehensive cost picture.

Explicit and implicit costs

We don’t just look at headline costs or invoices – we pay particular attention to hidden costs, implicit charges and potential inefficiencies.

Transaction pattern analysis

We make the execution process fully transparent and introduce systematic quality control.

We reveal hidden costs by asking

450 cost questions

to uncover

150 different costs.


The performance of an asset isn’t simply determined by its return. There is a complex relationship between return, risk and cost. Most of our clients understand their return and risk very well, but have an incomplete picture of their costs. Our core competence is understanding complex investment cost structures and identifying scope to optimise cost efficiency. We have built up a toolbox of know-how from our own experience in financial services and from all the clients we have worked with – we have seen most tricks in the book – and we make this toolbox available to every new client.

Broad market view

We have built up a deep, proprietary understanding across all major markets, suppliers, products and asset classes.

Accurate benchmarking

We benchmark our findings against our own databases of operational best practice and price structures.

Identify cost reduction candidates

This gives us a detailed understanding of the potential to increase efficiency and reduce costs.

Since 2006, we have analysed over

$1.5 trillion

of assets and contracts.


Our business is not simply measuring costs: we act to reduce them. Our aim isn’t to cut all costs to the bone, but to get our clients the best possible price for the services they need.

Negotiating terms

We are able to negotiate with your existing suppliers on a transparent and factual basis, leveraging our granular understanding of costs.

Efficiency improvements

We work with you and your suppliers to work on areas such as internal benchmarking or reduction of outliers.

Getting to ‘best-in-class’

Most advisers look for headline costs that are “in line” with the market – we however are not interested in averages: we want best in class.

60+ active


Why Use Us

Lower fees and expenses result in improved returns – we assist you in generating ‘non-investment alpha’, with no changes to an existing portfolio and no additional investment risk. Novarca is uniquely placed to work with you in understanding and optimizing your investment expenses.  Our depth of experience, along with specialist information, unique tools and a broad range of resources allows our clients to benefit from our accumulated knowledge, a valuable resource that might be a challenge for any single investor to replicate.  And importantly, our business principles and fee structure have been developed so that our interests are fully and properly aligned with yours.

The Benefits




Full Alignment of Interests


The Benefits

Using Novarca for cost optimisation enables our clients to improve portfolio efficiency, while their own teams can remain focused on high-level investment decisions.


Optimising management time

In a diversified portfolio, asset allocation is the biggest driver of returns, followed by manager selection and finally by the choice of individual instruments. However, your cost structure is the opposite: most fees are charged at the instrument level. By having Novarca do the deep, detailed analysis on fees, management has the opportunity to prioritize its efforts more efficiently and focus on its strengths.

Higher returns, no additional risk

Investment costs eat into your investment returns, reducing the NAV of your portfolio. Our savings are not just one-off – the compounding impact of a reduction in fees is very powerful.


Novarca provides transparency and an unbiased view of your portfolio costs and efficiency. We ensure that both management and governing bodies get the right information, and can act on it.

Up to


of your costs may be hidden


Novarca combines an unrivalled database of up-to-date cost information with detailed knowledge of where costs occur and where they can be reduced.

Better information

Because we work across so many markets and asset classes, we have a degree of visibility on cost structures that is hard to match, especially as the industry is evolving  rapidly so that former “good deals” can quickly become out of date.

Dedicated resources

There are three drivers of portfolio performance: return, risk and costs. We help you manage costs, so that you can focus on return and risk. There is a clear 80/20 rule when it comes to costs – the final 20% of optimisation takes the bulk of time and effort and Novarca is fully resourced for this job.

Industry experts

Our entire team comprises of industry experts with hands-on experience of managing money, creating financial products and determining pricing for sell-side institutions.


make your costs


Full Alignment of Interests

We are fully independent and incentivised only by cost structure improvements. We don’t give investment advice or sell investment products and we only work for the buy side.

No conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest when Novarca works with you. We don’t manage money, we don’t sell products and we don’t give investment advice. We reduce the costs that drag down the performance of your existing portfolio, without trying to change your asset allocation or preferred advisers, investment managers, brokers, custodians or other intermediaries.

No additional costs

We are paid for performance – we earn nothing unless we are successful in reducing your costs, and our fees come form the realised savings that would otherwise have been paid to the sell side.

we work on a


basis, and are only remunerated when


are realized


About Us

Novarca was founded in 2006 in Switzerland. Today our team of 30+ partners and associates operate across Europe and Asia and in the US.

We expect fundamental change to take place in the financial industry. One of the most important changes will be the significant reduction of information asymmetry between investors and providers as asset owners increasingly avoid investments that do not give them full visibility on cost. Our mission is to help make that change happen, by bridging the information asymmetry between investors and service providers. We want to make investing more transparent and, in the process, bring down investment costs.

We have advised and analysed over $1.5 trillion of assets and have built a comprehensive proprietary database of best practices and “deals done”. Our clients are institutional investors such as pension funds, sovereign wealth funds, corporates and family offices.

Industry Experts


Our Business Principles


Who We Work For


Industry Experts

Our partners all have hands-on financial sector experience, in asset management, investment advisory, trading, hedge funds, private equity or consulting.

click an image for details

Janine Breij – Benelux

Prior to joining Novarca, Janine was a director at ING Bank, responsible for the management of strategic client relationships with pension funds and insurance companies. Additionally, she was assigned to build ING’s presence in the German pension fund market. Janine studied law at the Rijksuniversiteit Leiden and followed executive programs at IMD in Lausanne and the Kellogg School of Management.


Innes Harding
Innes Harding – United Kingdom

From 2007 to 2012 he was senior business manager at Cheyne Capital, specialising in real estate debt and alternative investment strategies. Prior to this, Innes was business manager covering exotic and structured equity derivatives and alternative investments at Dresdner Kleinwort Business Management Group. Innes holds a BSc in Genetics and Immunology from the University of Aberdeen.


Stefan Hofman – Novarca Founder

Stefan Hofmann – founder. Before founding Novarca together with Marcel Staub in 2006, Stefan was CEO of the family office of a Forbes 500 enterprise, with 30 employees. In this role, he managed investments of over USD 1 billion across all asset classes. His previous experience includes the trading and investment divisions at Goldman Sachs and UBS in Zurich, London and New York. Stefan holds an MBA from INSEAD and has a series 7 license.


Emmy Labovitch – France / United Kingdom

Before joining Novarca, she was global head of marketing and a member of the executive committee of Union Bancaire Privée Asset Management; prior to joining UBP she held the same position at Fortis Investments, where she was responsible for one of Europe’s biggest fund operations. She began her career in financial services as a money manager in emerging markets. Emmy was educated at Oxford and Harvard universities and has an MBA from INSEAD. She is a CFA charterholder.


Pascal Lambers – Founding Partner – Benelux

Pascal has over 25 years of experience in banking and finance including tenure with Credit Suisse, Midland Bank (HSBC) and Veer Palthe Voûte (Allianz). He was also founding principal of Lambers van Driel Consultants, where he successfully structured and developed a number of traditional and alternative investment funds for large clients, both listed and unlisted.


Xavier Courtois – Russia and CIS

Xavier is founding partner of Novarca Russia & CIS. After managing a portfolio of private clients for UBS in London, Xavier joined HSBC to establish its private bank in Moscow; he later acted as advisor to Bank Pictet & Cie in its expansion into Russia and Central Asia. Xavier has a legal and economics background.


Ian Sosso – Asia

Before joining Novarca he was managing director and head of capital markets in Asia for Commerzbank. He has also held senior positions in investment banking at HSBC, UBS and JP Morgan in Paris, London, Tokyo, Singapore and Hong Kong. Ian’s expertise is the structuring of derivatives for all asset classes. Ian holds a Master of Finance from the London School of Economics.


Marcel Staub – Novarca Founder

Before founding Novarca in 2006 together with Stefan Hofmann, Marcel worked at UBS where he was responsible for eBanking projects and for the optimisation of core processes for all divisions of the bank. Part of his responsibility was the systematic assessment and analysis of all return-generating processes within the bank (return on assets-projects). He holds the Swiss banking diploma.


Mikko Syrjanen – United Kingdom

Before joining Novarca, Mikko was a partner at Cheyne Capital, one of the largest European hedge funds, where he was co-head and portfolio manager of the alternative investments division. From 1998 to 2005, Mikko was a vice president in the capital markets and M&A divisions of Morgan Stanley. He holds a degree from the Helsinki School of Economics.


Amit Bansal

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Tom Welsh – North America

Before joining Novarca, Tom founded a Silicon Valley tech company focused on bringing efficiencies to consumers and retailers through big data. Prior to that, he was a public finance banker and trader on a 10-person interest rate derivatives trading team for Merrill Lynch, executing swaps, options, and other products. Tom has a BSE in electrical engineering from Princeton University and an MBA from NYU Stern, and was a member of the USA rowing team in the 2000 Olympic Games.


Eric Veldpaus – Netherlands

Eric is specialized in back-office operations, operational risk, reporting and costs of asset management. He began his career at PwC, focussing on large pension funds, before moving to Robeco where he managed the back office. Prior to taking on the role of Strategy Director at novarca, he was responsible for business control and strategy at APG, including relations with the auditors and Dutch Central Bank, and was instrumental in the successful separation of the pension fund ABP from APG.

Eric compiled the policy documents Recommendations on the administration costs of asset management and Further elaboration on the costs of asset management published by the Federation of Dutch Pension Funds and lectures on pension fund cost structures at Nyenrode business school. He contributes regularly to industry journals on issues of cost. Eric is a CPA.


Richard Martens
Richard Martens – Novarca International

Prior to joining Novarca, Richard worked at Union Bancaire Privée as Head of Investment Advisory & Investment Products. He began his career at ABN AMRO Bank where he held a variety of senior positions including Head of Products & Solutions and Global Head of Discretionary Portfolio Management. Richard holds an MSc in Economics from Erasmus University Rotterdam and is a CEFA and CAIA charter holder.


Reto Tarreghetta
Reto Tarreghetta – Switzerland

Reto is CEO and Managing Partner of Novarca Ltd., Switzerland. He has broad experience at executive board level in the financial services industry. Before joining Novarca he was member of the executive board of Swisscanto Group, an asset manager based in Switzerland. There he was also responsible for the institutional business. Prior to this, he held senior positions at Julius Bär and Credit Suisse. He started his career at The Boston Consulting Group. He holds a master degree from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich.


Xavier Ducros
Xavier Ducros

Prio to joining Novarca, Xavier was the head of structuring at Rabo Bank for Europe, working out of London. Xavier has worked for global banks across Europe and Asia and has more than 20years experience in banking.



Our Business Principles

We started Novarca because we saw that the lack of transparency within the financial world leads to opaque fees and poor deals for investors. We work with our clients to change this.

Alignment of Interests

Novarca only benefits if our client benefits too, no savings means no billing from us.

Pure Neutrality

We do not give investment advice, nor do we sell any products. Our sole focus is to increase implementation efficiency and optimise cost structures – no matter the asset allocation, counterparty or investment product preference of our clients.

Independence and Integrity

Novarca is entirely owned by its partners and is exclusively paid by its clients. This ensures independence, integrity and full alignment of our interests with yours.

Who We Work For

Novarca helps major investors of all kinds. Our client roster includes pension funds, family offices, mutuals, SWFs and corporates. We serve over 60 clients with combined AuM of over $1.5 trillion. Their portfolios include both internally and externally managed assets and cover the full range of asset classes and markets. The transparency we provide benefits fund sponsors, governance committees and trustees as well as investment staff.

Please note that we only work with investors and asset owners – we are therefore unable to provide our services to sell-side participants, such as banks or asset managers. We also don’t refer asset managers to our clients.


Contact Us

If you have a specific enquiry or would like to arrange a meeting to discuss your project, please email us or contact one of our key partners around the world.

We work with some of the largest asset owner across the world. If you have a technology related idea that will help asset owners become more efficient investors, we are interested to learn more about it. Please note that we are not interested in receiving any information about investment products.


Novarca International Ltd.
Oberdorfstrasse 11
8808 Pfäffikon SZ

TELEPHONE: +41 55 511 21 21
FAX: +41 55 511 21 20
EMAIL: info@novarca.com




Our global offices are located in the most important financial markets.
Click the location for key office details.