Leading innovation in
Syntax Advisors provides investors with rules-based, diversified exposure to business risks via products that track Syntax Stratified Weight Indices. Syntax Indices are a new class of indices that reweight the most widely-used benchmarks, including the S&P 500, S&P 400, and MSCI EAFE using the Stratified Weight methodology to deliver a diversified return across all of the business opportunities in a benchmark rather than just the largest.
Syntax products were developed in conjunction with Functional Information System (FIS), the patented business classification system built by Locus Analytics that provides the technology used to identify business risks in a portfolio. Syntax Indices are developed and maintained by Syntax LLC, Syntax Advisors’ parent company. Syntax Advisors, LLC is a SEC registered investment advisor based in New York, NY.
The Syntax Team
Rory Riggs is the CEO and Founder of Syntax Indices. Rory’s idea for Syntax Stratified Indices came from his career in healthcare and the industry’s statistical use of population sampling and stratification across sub-populations to control for inadvertent biases in clinical trial results. To address the potential of similar biases in index results, he and his team identified a new risk category called related business risks, developed a new classification system with which to identify and group related business risk, and implemented the Stratified Weight methodology to control for the inadvertent over-weighting of related business risks that regularly occur in capitalization-weight and equal-weight methodologies.
Prior to founding Syntax and its sister company, Locus Analytics, Rory has been involved in the creation and development of many successful companies in healthcare and biotechnology. These companies include: Royalty Pharma; Fibrogen, Inc.; Cibus, LLC; GeneNews Ltd., Sugen, Inc. and eReceivables Inc. He is currently the chairman and co-founder of Royalty Pharma, the largest investor in revenue-producing intellectual property, principally royalty interests in marketed and late-stage development biopharmaceutical products. In addition, Rory is Chairman and Co-founder of Cibus, the leader in non-transgenic (non-GMO) gene editing in agriculture. He also served as the president and director of Biomatrix Corporation (NYSE: BXM) where he launched Synvisc, an important product in the treatment of osteoarthritis. Rory received a BA from Middlebury College and an MBA from Columbia University.
Carly ArisonPresident & COO
Glenn S. Freed, Ph.D.Chief Investment Strategist & Portfolio Manager
David JaffinChief Financial Officer
Jonathan SweetManaging Director
Joe Leung, CPADirector
Jimmy LinSenior Associate
The Board Members
Deborah Fuhr is the managing partner and co-founder of ETFGI. Previously, she served as global head of ETF research and implementation strategy and as a managing director at BlackRock/Barclays Global Investors from 2008-2011. Fuhr also worked as a managing director and head of the investment strategy team at Morgan Stanley in London from 1997-2008, and as an associate at Greenwich Associates.
Deborah Fuhr was the recipient of the 2014 William F. Sharpe Lifetime Achievement Award for outstanding and lasting contributions to the field of index investing, the Nate Most Greatest Contributor to the ETF industry award at the 11th annual ExchangeTradedFunds.com awards dinner, and the ETF.com Lifetime achievement award. She has been named as one of the “100 Most Influential Women in Finance” by Financial News in 2014, 2013, 2012, 2009, 2008 and 2007, and as one of the “10 to Watch in 2014” by Rep. magazine and wealthmanagement.com. Ms Fuhr won the award for the Greatest Overall Contribution to the development of the Global ETF industry in the ExchangeTradedFunds.com survey in 2011 and 2008, received an award for her contribution to the ETF sector at the annual closed end funds and ETF event in New York, and was featured in the Investors Chronicle’s list of “150 people that can make you money” in 2010.
Ms. Fuhr frequently writes articles for various publications, including: Financial News, ETFI Asia, CityWire, FT Advisor, Pensions and Investments, IPE: Investments and Pensions Europe, Focus - World Federation of Exchanges, and the Financial Times.
Ms. Fuhr is one of the founders and on the board of Women in ETFs, one of the founders and on the board of Women in ETFs - Europe chapter, and is on the board of Cancer Research UK’s ‘Women of Influence’ initiative to support female scientists. Ms. Fuhr is on the editorial board of the Journal of Indexes (United States), Journal of Indexes (Europe), and Money Management Executive; the advisory board for the Journal of Index Investing; and the investment panel of experts for Portfolio Adviser, the FTSE ICB Advisory Committee, the NASDAQ listing and hearing review council, the International Advisory Committee for the Egyptian Exchange, and the University of Connecticut School of Business International Advisory Board. She holds a BS degree from the University of Connecticut and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.
Kathy Cuocolo, CPA
Kathy brings over 30 years of experience in the asset management and ETF industry to Syntax. Prior to Syntax, Kathy was most recently the Managing Director, Head of Global ETF Services at BNY Mellon. Before BNY, Kathy spent 22 years at State Street Corporation, where she rose to an Executive Vice President. While at State Street, Kathy brought the first ETF to market, the S&P 500 SPDR , as well as several of the other early ETF products such as the Select Sector SPDR, the Dow Diamond, and CountryBaskets. She began her career at PricewaterhouseCoopers as an audit and consulting manager.
Kathy received her B.A. in Accounting Summa Cum Laude from Boston College and is a Certified Public Accountant in Massachusetts. She is a Board Member and Audit Chair of Greenbacker Renewable Energy LLC, and has been on the Boards of Select Sector SPDRs, The China Fund and Guardian Family of Funds.
George Hornig is a successful senior executive and business founder whose career has focused on financial services (asset management, investment banking, insurance and fin-tech) but has also spanned industries as diverse as health care, manufacturing, outsourcing of business services, social media, cybersecurity, augmented reality, and e-waste management. In addition to his role in leading and restructuring established businesses, George has been a significant investor and adviser for many early stage companies as well as a Director of several mutual funds.
George is presently CEO of Transatlantic Financial Holdings, LLC, the financial services division of Transatlantic Energy Group, a multinational diversified holding company.
From 2010 - 2016, George was a Senior Managing Director of PineBridge Investments, an asset manager with over $80 billion under management. George led the restructuring of the operations of this former division of AIG Insurance to make it an independent company after its divestiture, including reducing annualized company expenses by more than $60 million.
Prior to joining PineBridge, George spent 11 years at Credit Suisse Asset Management as Global Chief Operating Officer. Prior to that, he was Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Americas, at Deutsche Bank. In 1988, he was a co-founder and Chief Operating Officer of Wasserstein Perella and Company, following his tenure at The First Boston Corp. George also practiced law for two years at Skadden Arps at the start of his career.
George is currently a Director of Forrester Research (publicly held technology research company), Edelman (communications marketing firm) and Xometry (advanced manufacturing platform business). He is also an investor and/or advisor to Longsight Strategic Advisors (strategic advisory firm), VNTANA (interactive hologram technologies), Bond Street (online small business lender), Trinity Cyber (advanced cyber security firm), Babiators (children’s sunglasses company) and KneesEase (health care device marketer).
He was a Director of KBL Healthcare I (public company which purchased Concord Health in 1994 and sold it to MultiCare for $114m in 1996), Unity Mutual Life (mutual insurer merged with Columbian Mutual in 2012), Director of Veridian Group (publicly held aerospace contractor sold to General Dynamics in 2003 for $1.5 billion), an investor and Director of OfficeTiger (outsourced business services sold to RR Donnelly in 2006 for $250m), Daily Candy (social media platform sold to Comcast for $125m in 2008) and CloudBlue (e-waste management company sold to Ingram Micro for $45m in 2013).
George received his AB in Economics from Harvard College, his MBA from Harvard Business School and his JD from Harvard Law School.
Rich Lyons is a Professor of Finance at the Haas School of Business, where he served as dean from 2008 to 2018 and acting dean from 2004 to 2005. As dean, Lyons led a sweeping culture initiative that drove the school’s historic strengths more deeply into admissions and other critical processes with a set of four Defining Leadership Principles: Question the Status Quo, Confidence Without Attitude, Students Always, and Beyond Yourself. He oversaw the development of Connie & Kevin Chou Hall—a new academic building funded entirely by alumni and friends—as well as attracting eight of the 10 largest gifts in school history.
Lyons forged stronger ties with other UC Berkeley colleges and departments with a focus on dual degree programs combining business with STEM fields, including the new Management, Entrepreneurship, and Technology program with Berkeley Engineering. In 2018, he was awarded with the Berkeley Citation, given to individuals whose contributions to UC Berkeley go beyond the call of duty and whose achievements exceed the standards of excellence in their fields. Lyons also received Berkeley’s highest teaching honor in 1998.
Lyons’ research and teaching are mostly in international finance, though his more recent work explores how business leadership drives innovation and the importance of culture in shaping organizations. From 2006 to 2008, he took a leave from Berkeley to serve as Goldman Sachs’ Chief Learning Officer, focusing on leadership development for managing directors. Prior to joining the faculty at UC Berkeley in 1993, he was an assistant professor at Columbia Business School. He received his BS in finance from Berkeley and a PhD in economics from MIT.
Stewart C. Myers is the Robert C. Merton (1970) Professor of Finance, Emeritusat the MIT Sloan School of Management.
Myers is past President of the American Finance Association, a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research and a principal of the Brattle Group, Inc. His textbook Principles of Corporate Finance (12th ed. with Richard Brealey and Franklin Allen) is known as the “bible” of financial management.
His research focuses on the valuation of real and financial assets, corporate finance and financial aspects of government regulation of business. He introduced both the tradeoff and pecking order theories of capital structure and was the first to recognize the importance of real options in corporate finance.
Myers is the author of influential research papers on many topics, including adjusted present value (APV), rate of return regulation, capital allocation and risk management in banking and insurance, real options, payout policy, and moral hazard and information issues in financing decisions. He has served as a director of Entergy Corporation and CAT Ltd. and as a manager of the Cambridge Endowment for Research in Finance.
He holds an AB from Williams College and an MBA and a PhD from Stanford University.
Exchange Traded Funds
An exchange-traded fund, or ETF, is a diversified pool of assets that trades on an exchange like a stock. ETFs are a low cost and tax efficient way to invest your money. Syntax Stratified Weight ETFs are designed to track their specific Stratified Weight index.
Separately Managed Accounts
Syntax separately managed accounts are Stratified Weight portfolios that can be customized to a specific investor’s risk/return objectives, portfolio allocation goals, and other investment preferences. Separately Managed Accounts offer investors the transparency and control of directly owning the individual securities.