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6 Apr 2009

Strong Performance In First Six Months For ACP Fund

London hedge fund manager ACP Partners, which is soon to merge with TriAlpha Investment Advisors, said that their long/short eguity strategy fund, ACP Financial Opportunities, has beaten its benchmark by over 65% in its first six months.

Since the fund launch on 1 September 2008 through 28 February 2009, the new fund, which invests across a group of portfolio managers focused on the financial sector, returned 4.9%. Its benchmark, the S&P 1200 Global Financials, returned -60.7% over the same period, and the HFRI Equity Hedge Index -22.2%.

"Financials account for around 20% of global equity market capitalisation and, despite benefiting from significant diversification, the financial sector as a whole exhibits a high degree of complexity and is under-covered by specialist investors." Stephen Greene, partner and CIO of the ACP’s Multi Manager business, said, "Having undergone an unprecedented shock, resulting in severe price dislocations, such conditions are ideal for sector specialist hedge fund managers to add value."

"The key to achieving positive returns has been portfolio construction. The portfolio was specifically structured to benefit from the expected market volatility as we placed significant emphasis on sourcing managers with trading orientated approaches, ‘macro-aware’ processes and short term catalysts for value realisation. Unusually, our fund was one of only a very few fund of funds to be market neutral over this period of turmoil." Greene concluded.

As examples, the portfolio currently shorts banks that lack balance sheet integrity and takes a long position on banks that have been through the exercise of write-downs and capital raises. The underlying managers also hold long positions in property and casualty insurers and reinsurers, who have strong balances sheets and will benefit from a firming of insurance premiums and decreased competition. Conversely, they have taken short positions in life insurance companies whose shorter term liabilities now far outweigh their available liquid assets. Several of the managers have been shorting consumer sensitive sectors, such as credit cards and consumer finance.

The fund has a minimim investment of $1,000,000 (or equivalent) with quarterly redemptions, and a managment fee of 1% and performance fee of 10%.

Hedge Fund Manager Silk Invest Launches Two Equity Funds

FSA regulated asset manager, Silk Invest Ltd, successfully launched the African Lions Fund and the Arab Falcons Fund, which helped the hedge fund manager achieve its goals in becoming a specialist in Arab and African equities.

The Luxembourg domiciled African Lions fund and Arab Falcons fund went live on 27th March with an NAV of Euro 100 ($135.2). The portfolio managers, based in London, Cairo, Casablanca and Johannesburg, plan to build up the portfolio up cautiously, taking advantage of liquidity opportunities.

"Raising assets in these markets proved extremely challenging," Zin Bekkali, CEO of Silk Invest said, "Ultimately, the strength of our investment proposition, and the valuation of the markets we specialise, convinced investors to support the launch."

African and Arab markets account for 4% of worldwide market capitalization and this is projected to increase as the region is set to further grow its share of the world’s GDP.

Baldwin Berges, director of business development, observed that “the funds should grow in size fairly rapidly. Investors understand well our proposition and we have built a pitch book in excess of Euro 500 million ($676.2 million). Many of these investors have committed to invest in our funds, once the fund is up and running.”

Daniel Broby, the Chief Investment Officer of Silk Invest says that the launch “is perfectly timed from an investor perspective. There is now immense opportunity in frontier markets of the dramatic declines caused by the credit crisis.”

Stark Opens NY Hedge Fund Hotel

"The bright side of an economic downturn is that business people are branching out on their own," said Adam Stark, president of Stark Business Solutions. "We have made it seamless for enterprising individuals to establish new businesses without significant expense and with very little risk. We are looking forward to helping grow the business community in Scarsdale."

Customized trading floors have been installed to accommodate hedge funds and trading operations along with mahogany furnishings. SBS operates three other executive suites in Westchester: White Plains, Mount Kisco and Harrison. More than 100 people attended the opening event.