Small money managers are beginning to enter the exchange traded fund fray as so-called white label, turnkey ETF companies provide an easy way to build and launch an investment idea.

ETF issuers like Exchange Traded Concepts, ALPS, AdvisorShares and ETF Issuer Solutions help go through the regulatory approval process, provide a board of directors and get an ETF listed on an exchange for $20,000 to $100,000 in startup costs, reports Ashley Lau for Reuters.

Some small hedge fund managers, for example, see ETFs as an ideal way to increase assets under management. Smaller funds often find it harder to bring in large pension funds and institutions that look for large hedge funds with billions in assets under management and long track records. As a result, more are beginning to look at ETFs as a way to market their investment strategies, targeting financial advisors and retail investors instead. [Hedge Fund Strategies Could Bolster ETF Growth]

Additionally, hobbyists see the investment vehicle as a way bring their investment ideas to others. For instance, Frank Tobe, who invested his own money in robotics stocks for more than a decade, decided that he wanted a robotics-themed ETF. In June 2013, Tobe, with the help of ETC, started crafting the Robo-Stox Global Robotics & Automation Index ETF (NasdaqGM: ROBO), which now holds over $100 million in assets under management. [Robotics ETF Tops $100 Million in Assets]

Tobe argues that going through an turnkey ETF provider helped save him 90% in startup costs and over eight months of regulatory red-tape.

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