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7 May 2007

Blackstone To Launch 2 Funds Of Hedge Funds

Blackstone Group LP is looking to raise up to $2 billion for two new funds of hedge funds, according to recent reports, the Blackstone Strategic Alliance Fund LP and the Blackstone Strategic Alliance Offshore Fund Ltd.

Blackstone said in April filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission that the new funds may gather as much as $1 billion each. Commenting on developments, Paul Shaye of Chestnutt Hill Partners told Bloomberg: "It's another arrow in their quiver and shows again that Blackstone is no longer just a private-equity firm. It's really looking like a firm that is going to compete with the likes of the big brokerages.''

Blackstone's hedge fund unit currently manage $17.1 billion, which constitutes 22% of the firm's total assets under management. News of the company's intentions signals its intent to increase the scope of its money management interests having initially started out specializing in buyouts. Earlier this week Blackstone announced it has acquired plastics company Klockner Pentaplast from fellow private equity firm Cinven for $1.8 billion.

Since 1985, Blackstone has raised capital of approximately $59.4 billion for discretionary private equity investment funds focused on alternative asset classes. In addition Blackstone manages approximately $17.1 billion in discretionary marketable alternative asset programs, $2.5 billion in proprietary hedge funds and approximately $2 billion in closed-end mutual funds. The Corporate Advisory Services and Restructuring & Reorganization Advisory Services businesses have handled assignments valued at over $550 billion.

Through December 31, 2006, Blackstone had invested or committed to invest total capital of $37.5 billion in 371 transactions with a total enterprise value of over $339 billion through its Private Equity, Real Estate, and Mezzanine funds and over $6.1 billion across 467 different senior loan and other debt instruments through its Corporate Debt funds.

Integra Hedge Fund Launch

Integra Investment Management announced the launch of their new hedge fund, the Integra FX2 Master Fund L.P., with $10 million of their own money at launch, the new hedge fund opened its doors April first, 2007.

The new fund was created to compliment Integra's established flagship fund, Integra Master Fund L.P. and to fulfill investor requests for an FX only product. The new fund will trade the same methodology as the flagship fund with the exception that it will be trading the OTC FX markets only with double the exposure of the flagship fund. Views will be expressed using options while adjusting the exposure levels via trading the underlying spot markets.

With UBS as prime broker, the hedge fund has a $500K minimum investment, 2% management fee and 20% performance fee. The Integra FX2 Master Fund will target the major currency pairs already traded in the flagship fund as well as a limited number of additional currency pairs. Richard Scalone, founder of Integra will act as portfolio manager for the new hedge fund.

Prior to his tenure at Integra, Scalone was at ABN Amro Bank where he worked as a proprietary trader in futures, bonds and the forward and spot markets from 1997 to 1998. From 1988 to 1997, Scalone traded foreign exchange for Chemical Bank (now JP Morgan Chase), serving as a forward currency trader, chief dealer for the European Monetary System (“EMS”) desk and as a forward desk manager for all EMS currencies.

Integra was formed in 1999, with $645 million in assets under management, Integra manages FX hedge fund and other option based FX trading strategies with minimal exposure to US Fixed Income.

Integra's Flagship Fund, the Integra Master Fund L.P. trades approximately 85% OTC FX in the major currency pairs and approximately 15% in the fixed income markets and the S&P via the futures markets.