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NAAIM Shark Tank

Shark Tank 2015

NAAIM Shark Tank was created to help NAAIM Members gain exposure to new ideas in asset management and identify potential new business relationships


Rich Paul of Potomac Advisors Wins Fourth Annual NAAIM Shark Tank at Uncommon Knowledge 2017 Conference

Littleton, CO – May 23, 2017 – Richard Paul, Founder and CIO of Potomac Advisors, Inc. in Lakewood Ranch, FL, received 1st place in the 2017 NAAIM Shark Tank competition for best investment strategy at the 2017 National Association of Active Investment Managers Uncommon Knowledge Conference. Uncommon Knowledge 2017 was held in San Diego, CA, May 1-3 2017. Paul’s strategy, EVO, boasts of a 15-year, real-money, track record that has doubled the annualized total return of the S&P 500 index, with half of the maximum drawdown.

The NAAIM Shark Tank competition is an opportunity for the developers of active investing approaches to pitch their strategies to fellow advisers and active investment managers in pursuit of sub-adviser agreements. Finalists have six minutes to present their strategies, followed by eight minutes of Q&A from judges and the audience. The winning strategy is selected by three judges and audience ballots.

“The NAAIM audience are largely active investment managers, themselves,” explains Steve Williamson, chair of the 2017 Shark Tank Committee. “They are looking for active strategies to diversify their portfolios and reduce risk. When you look at EVO, it is based on strategy diversification and has shown strong improvement in risk/return as strategy diversification increases.”

Paul began his career as an engineer, where his expertise in analyzing weapon system performance provided the basis for developing the risk/reward analysis that is fundamental to the techniques used in Potomac’s asset management program. In 1986, he registered as an investment advisor and founded Potomac Fund Management in 1987, which eventually grew to over $100 million in assets under management. After selling his majority interest in 2003, and his remaining shares in 2014, Paul expected to hang up his shingle and enjoy retirement. Instead, his passion for perfecting EVO, and its outstanding 12+ year performance at the time led him to continue to evolve the system. After rejoining NAAIM in 2015, Paul began licensing EVO signals to NAAIM and other investment advisers, in addition to offering it to his own clients, resulting in the growth of assets using EVO from $1m to over $250m.

EVO is a mechanical market timing trading system that generates buy, sell and short signals based on algorithmic rules using quantitative analysis.  EVO utilizes combinations of 25 short to intermediate-term strategies from a universe of more than 120 trading systems that are each evaluated for risk and return.

The National Association of Active Investment Managers (NAAIM) is a non-profit trade group of more than 150 registered investment advisors who collectively manage over $35 billion in assets. NAAIM members provide active money management services to their clients to produce favorable risk-adjusted returns as an alternative to more passive, buy-and-hold investment strategies. In addition to the NAAIM Shark Tank, NAAIM sponsors the NAAIM Founders Award for white papers advancing the understanding and validation of active management, publishes the weekly NAAIM Exposure Index, and sponsors its annual Uncommon Knowledge conference along with smaller conferences and regional workshops on active investment management, trading techniques for various instruments and markets, regulation and compliance, and other topics of interest to its membership.

Prior Shark Tank winners have included 2016 – David Bush, Founder of Alphatative LLC, 2015; John McClure, President of ProfitScore Capital Management, and 2014 – Len Fox, president of Scarecrow Trading, LLC.

About the Winner:

Rich Paul Picture

Rich Paul is the founder and chief investment officer of Potomac Advisors in Lakewood Ranch, FL, and is a seasoned quant with over 30 years of experience as an investment advisor. His passion for perfecting his algorithmic, rules-based market timing trading system drives a desire to maintain the legacy of what has become an increasingly more impressive long-term track record. He has teamed up with his daughter and brother-in-law to ensure that the trading system is maintained for the foreseeable future.

Paul is a co-founding member of NAAIM, where he served on their first Board of Directors in 1990, and authored the organization’s original Performance and Measurement Standards while serving as the Chairman of the committee. He also co-authored the landmark article, “Market Timing Works Where it Matters Most…. In the real World,” in the Journal of Portfolio Management in 1992.

Congrats to 2017 Shark Tank Winner – Rich Paul of Potomac Advisors for his EVO Strategy Rich and Megan Paul

EVO is a mechanical system   that generates buy, sell and short signals based on algorithmic rules using quantitative analysis. EVO’s design is based on the idea that when many short-term to long-term trading systems are aggregated, trading signals become stronger as the noise and errors diversify away. With over twenty trading systems in the composite, EVO’s nearly 15-year GIPS and Theta Research verified history boasts a CAGR more than double that of the market (16.97%), with half the maximum drawdown (-23.8%) of the S&P 500 Total Return (-51.0%).


Previous Winners:
2016: David Bush, Alphatative
2015: John McClure, ProfitScore Capital Management
2014: Len Fox, Scarecrow Trading

2017 NAAIM Shark Tank Information Now Available

New rules are “afloat” for the 2017 NAAIM Shark Tank Competition. NAAIM Shark Tank preliminaries have been broadened to accept both members and non-members, and live presentations at Outlook have been replaced with the submission of recorded presentations, along with a written application. Managers wishing to participate are requested to submit recorded video or webinar presentations along with a written application to the committee for consideration to present in the finals at Uncommon Knowledge 2017 in San Diego, April 30- May 3. A variety of formats will be accepted.  Competition Rules and a link to the written application follow. To be notified of updates and any changes to the competition and to be added to the mailing list, please complete and send the Intent to Submit on page 3 to before you send in your application and recording. 2017 Shark Tank Competition Rules and Intent to Submit Link to Written Application Recording options for NAAIM Members: 

  • Paid NAAIM members are welcome to use NAAIM’s GoToWebinar account to record their presentation. Please contact Susan Truesdale to make an appointment. (One recording per strategy – no do overs).

About NAAIM Shark Tank 2017 Finals Competition will be held during NAAIM’s 2017 Uncommon Knowledge Conference. Finalists must be a current NAAIM member (through 2017) and attend the conference to be eligible to participate. NAAIM Shark Tank was created in 2013 to help NAAIM Members gain exposure to new ideas in asset management and identify potential new business relationships.  The first finals competition was held at the Uncommon Knowledge conference in 2014.

OBJECTIVES: – To formalize the networking potential for NAAIM members – To provide a structured venue for NAAIM Members to present strategies/models/signals to other members, managers and asset gatherers – To provide NAAIM members exposure to new ideas in asset management – To provide managers/asset gatherers opportunity to identify potential new relationships

The views expressed by the NAAIM Shark Tank judges panel are theirs alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of The National Association of Active Investment Managers (NAAIM), or any of its members. NAAIM is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the panel.