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30 Apr 2007

Sal. Oppenheim To Launch Spin-Off Hedge Fund

Sal. Oppenheim Jr. & Cie, one of Europe's largest private banks is moving towards alternative investments and hedge funds. Oppenheim said it wants to spin off a hedge fund from its proprietary trading book. The bank will seed the hedge fund with its own cash but expects to raise as much as €500 million ($680 million).

Oppenheim already has launched the Figaro Currency Fund, a Dublin domiciled hedge fund, as another example of success. It combines the bank's currency expertise with a modern absolute-return approach. The fund aims to achieve stable above-average returns (7% - 10% p.a.) with low correlation to stocks and bonds. The Investment process of the hedge fund is a disciplined analytical approach combining macro-economic analysis, geopolitical trends, technical indicators and general market sentiment towards investing in currencies.

Headquartered in the bank's offices in Zurich, the new hedge fund will will begin trading in the third quarter, taking long and short positions in small to mid size companies, investing almost two-thirds of the book in firms from German-speaking countries, it said. The rest will be invested primarily in other Western European countries.

Oppenheim today is one of Europe‘s leading private banks. Since the company‘s founding in 1789, the Cologne private bankers have been open to new developments in industry, business, and new financial models.

Dresdner Kleinwort Announces New Head for US based Hedge Funds

Dresdner Kleinwort, the investment banking division of Dresdner Bank AG announced the appointment of Chris Baildon as Head of Equities Distribution for US based Hedge Funds. Baildon joins as a Managing Director and will report to Mark Small, Head of Equities in the US and Martin Newson, Head of the Hedge Fund Solutions Group based in London.

Baildon previously worked at UBS where he specialized in the coverage of hedge funds as Head of European Sales Trading. Martin Newson, Head of Hedge Fund Solutions said, "Chris is an important addition to our team and the ongoing development of our of hedge fund offering. The European markets are extremely significant to US based hedge fund clients, perhaps now more than ever, and the appointment of Chris further improves our ability to offer the funds the very best levels of servicing."

According to reports, Dresdner Kleinwort plans to double the number of hedge fund specialists in its investment bank over the next three years, aiming to increase hedge fund sales from 10-15% of fees and commissions to 25%.

The bank currently employs close to 50 staff focused on hedge funds across its corporate finance, equities, fixed income, currencies and derivatives divisions, and plans to double this to 100. Newson, hired last November to set up the bank’s hedge fund solutions group, said the new appointments would be spread over three years.