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21 Sep 2007

Babylon Admitted To Participate in Iraqi Central Bank T-Bill Auction

Iraqi hedge fund `The Babylon Fund´ announced that today, as the first foreigners, they were admitted by the Iraqi Central Bank to participate in the primary auction of Iraqi-dinar denominated 6 month and 12 month T-bills.

The investment case for T-bills: Annual net yields are running at approx 18% for 6 month T-bills, and the exchange rate is consistently appreciating against the USD via a managed float regime.

The inflation rate is also now quickly falling down from extreme levels. In January it was running at 50%+ , but YTD it's now down to 5%.

Babylon's winning streak continued during July and August, with a rise of 3,8% in the Babylon Fund's NAV-price.

Of the hedge fund's direct Iraqi holdings, bond yields steered higher upon a combination of dried-up flow and risk aversion factors partly based upon the perceived weakened state of the government whose success might be seen as being indirectly linked to the bond payment stream.

On the other hand, in the ISX stock market in Baghdad, prices rose strongly, as did value and volumes traded, as participants positioned themselves ahead of foreigners' entrance into the ISX, which was allowed as of 1st of August.

According to a statement, Babylon's aim is to provide long-term capital growth from an investment portfolio consisting of Iraqi and Iraqi-dependent securities. The investment process is mainly top-down driven, with a mix of fundamental analysis and portfolio diversification characteristics, aiming to be regarded as an easy, safe and efficient Gateway towards investing into the region.

Amanda Invests $7 Million In Finnish Fund

Hedge Fund Amanda Capital Plc announced today in a press release that they have invested five million euros ($7 million) in a Finnish private equity fund, the MB Equity Fund IV.

Equity Fund IV will continue MB Funds' earlier investment strategy by investing in medium-sized companies in Nordic countries.

The Amanda Group is a private equity investment company. Its parent company (Amanda Capital Plc is the first publicly listed private equity fund-of-funds in Scandinavia. The parent company has investments in 24 different private equity funds and in four funds of funds managed by Amanda.

Amanda Group is one of Finland's largest private equity fund investment management companies. The Group manages several private equity fund portfolios under consultancy agreements. It manages also five private equity funds of funds, which have several domestic and international investors.

Amanda Group currently has more than EUR 1.5 billion ($2.1 billion) in assets under management (original
investment commitments) and has made investments in more than 100 private equity funds in Europe, the United States, Asia and Russia.