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19 Feb 2008

Centaurus Capital Raises Stake In UK Waste Management

Centaurus Capital Ltd. announced an increase in their stake in Biffa PLC to 4.23%. The London-based hedge fund bought about 1.15 million shares in two tranches, lifting its stake to about 14 million shares, or 3.758%.

UK waste management and recyling business, Biffa, recently agreed to a takeover offer by WasteAcquisitionco, a consortium of various entities within the Montagu Funds, the Global Infrastructure Partners Funds and UCIL at 350 pence per share, valuing Biffa at about £1.23 billion ($2.4 billion).

Centaurus Capital is a private investment management company with an emphasis on Europe. Centaurus was launched in year 2000 and originated from an investment team working together at BNP Paribas since 1993.

In 2005, the Centaurus Alpha Fund was awarded the Hedge Funds Review European Performance Award in the category of Event Driven Fund.

Other hedge funds such as Cheyne Capital Management (UK) LLP and Davidson Kempner European Partners LLP, an affiliate of New York-based Davidson Kempner Capital Management LLC, have emerged as investors in Biffa in the hope of a bidding war.

Asia-Pacific Investable Hedge Fund Index Launch

Index compiler MSCI Barra announced today that it is to launch the MSCI Asia-Pacific Hedge Fund OPTIX Index, a new investable hedge fund index designed to reflect the overall structure and composition of the Asia-Pacific hedge fund universe.

Henry Fernandez, CEO of MSCI Barra, said, “The forthcoming launch of the MSCI Asia-Pacific Hedge Fund OPTIX Index responds to investor demand for a liquid and representative investable hedge fund index that reflects the overall Asia-Pacific hedge fund opportunity set. The index is designed to serve as the basis of index-linked financial products, such as funds, derivatives, and structured products.”

The MSCI Asia-Pacific Hedge Fund OPTIX Index will be composed of only funds that are open to new subscriptions and with at least monthly liquidity, according to a statement from the index compiler.

NAI, working with SPARX International (Hong Kong) Limited will be responsible for selecting and conducting due diligence on the hedge fund managers. NAI will also monitor the investment mandate of each managed fund.

Calculation of the index is expected to begin in March 2008, and it is expected to launch with around 20 constituent funds. The index will be constructed and maintained by MSCI Barra according to the MSCI Investable Hedge Fund Index Methodology.