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16 Jul 2009

The Private Fund Investment Advisers Registration Act of 2009

Richard H. Baker, President and CEO of the Managed Funds Association (MFA) wrote a letter to MFA members this afternoon, highlighting today’s announcement by the Obama Administration requiring all advisers to hedge funds and other private pools of capital, including private equity and venture capital funds, to register with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Baker highlights how the Administration’s proposed legislation would:

* eliminate the private adviser exception in the Investment Advisers Act and require hedge fund managers and other investment advisers to private investment pools with at least $30 million in assets under management to register with the SEC;

* eliminate the exemption from registration in the Advisers Act for certain commodity trading advisors registered with the CFTC if the commodity trading advisor acts as an investment adviser to a private fund (defined as a company that would be an investment company under the Investment Company Act of 1940 but for the exceptions contained in Section 3(c)(1) or Section 3(c)(7));

Read the rest

Hedge Fund Regulation Guide

SYZ & CO Expands To Hedge Funds & FoHF's In Spain

International hedge fund manager and Swiss banking group, SYZ & CO, has acquired 50% of the asset management company owned by Spanish alternative investment group N+1.

The joint venture, named “N+1 SYZ Gestión”, will provide asset management services to high level clients in Spain, providing discretionary or advisory mandates for large family groups or institutional clients, as well as for investment funds and funds of hedge funds.

“As has been the case in Italy, we have preferred entering into a partnership with a solid and well-established local partner. This enables us to provide offerings that are adapted to the specific nature of the local market”, said Alfredo Piacentini, Managing Partner at Banque SYZ & CO. “We are particularly satisfied with our partnership with N+1, a group we have known for many years, and with which we share the same vision and values.”

“The Spanish asset management market is in the midst of dramatic change and today there is real demand for high level international asset management expertise; our alliance with SYZ & CO will enable us to successfully meet this demand”, said Santiago Eguidazu, N+1’s President. “SYZ & CO enjoys a strong reputation in the Spanish market and there are strong synergies between our two asset management groups.”

N+1 Group company currently has approximately CHF 400million ($353 million) in assets under management. The transaction is subject to approval by the CNMV, the Spanish financial markets regulatory authority. SYZ & CO's total assets under management now exceed CHF 3.2bn ($2.9 billion).

Appeals Court Dismisses Fraud Charges Against Hedge Fund Advisor Hennessee Group

The U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed a district court’s decision that also dismissed a securities fraud case against New York-based hedge fund investment adviser Hennessee Group LLC.

Judge Colleen McMahon of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York that dismissed claims of breach of contract and securities fraud in South Cherry Street, LLC. v. Hennessee Group. All of South Cherry’s arguments on the appeal were found to be without merit.

The claims were in connection with Hennessee's investment advice regarding Bayou Management’s hedge funds that were uncovered as part of a large Ponzi scheme, for which Bayou’s principals were found guilty of securities fraud in 2005.

“We are delighted with the Second Circuit’s decision that finds all claims of breach of contract and securities fraud against Hennessee are without merit. Bayou’s Ponzi scheme caused many unfortunate events, but the Court’s decision establishes that Hennessee was not a participant on any level,” said Bennett Falk, Hennessee’s trial counsel and a partner in the securities litigation and regulatory practice group in the Florida office of Bressler, Amery and Ross, P.C.