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Royal Bank of Canada’s (RBC) asset-services division, RBC Investor & Treasury Services (RBC I&TS) is stepping up its commitment to the alternative mutual funds space, taking over as custodian for three alternative mutual funds that Picton Mahoney Asset Management manages.

Specifically, RBC I&TS has been appointed custodian to three liquid alternative funds that were added to Picton Mahoney’s fortified fund family on Sept. 28. As part of the arrangement, RBC I&TS will also provide fund administration and shareholder services.

The market for so-called “liquid alt” mutual funds is expected to grow with the implementation of a new regulatory regime that takes effect in January 2019, which aims to expand investors’ access to funds that can use strategies (such as leverage, short selling and derivatives trading) that are generally unavailable in traditional funds.

RBC I&TS has served as custodian to Picton Mahoney’s traditional mutual funds since 2015. RBC I&TS also provides shareholder and valuation services to Picton Mahoney’s hedge funds.

“Asset managers recognize the value of alternative investments,” said David Linds, managing director, head asset servicing, Canada, RBC I&TS, in a statement, “and our new mandate with Picton Mahoney Asset Management shows that we possess the products, services and offerings to fulfil their growing and evolving needs.”