Hedge Fund News Wrap: Week Ending 3/21/14

Highbridge Capital Management Hires Ex-SAC Managers

Highbridge Capital Management has decided to dip its hand in SAC Capital Advisors’ talent pool, following in the footsteps of Balyasny Asset Management, BlueCrest Capital Management, and Moore Capital Management.


According to the New York Times DealBook, Highbridge has hired two top SAC portfolio managers. Wayne Chambless, who specializes in short-selling, and Christopher Procaccini, who specializes in healthcare stocks, have been hired to join the JP Morgan Chase-owned hedge fund.

FINalternative cites that Chambless and Procaccini have managed $800 million to $1 billion combined during their time at SAC Capital.

Chambless and Procaccini will be leaving SAC one month before the scandal-ridden firm will officially convert to a family office under its new name, Point72 Asset Management, according to DealBook.

Turnover is part of the natural ebb and flow of SAC’s business,” said Jonathan Gasthalter, a spokesman for SAC. “SAC remains well within its historical normal levels of voluntary turnover.”


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Hedge Fund Manager, Pantera Capital Management, Supports Top Bitcoin Exchange

Pantera Capital Management, the hedge fund manager for Fortress Investment Group LLC, invested close to $10 million in Bitstamp Ltd., which has surfaced as the world’s top bitcoin exchange following the collapse of Mt. Gox. The news follows a conference hosted by Pantera last week for bitcoin entrepreneurs.

According to FINalternatives, Bitstamp houses as much as 50 percent of the world’s dollar-bitcoin trade. Sources at Pantera Capital Management say that the decision to invest in bitcoin startups is aimed at boosting returns for its clients.

Last year, Pantera launched Pantera Bitcoin Advisors fund with $147 million, in an effort to build its brand in the bitcoin industry.


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Bloomberg News

Forex Minute



Former IMF Chief, Strauss-Kahn, To Launch Hedge Fund

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, a former International Monterary Fund chief, is looking to apply his extensive experience in global policy-making into a different career. Strauss-Kahn is seeking to raise $2 billion to start his own global macro hedge fund, according to DealBook.

Strauss-Kahn is currently in China, meeting with potential investors for his fund. Strauss-Kahn, who has faced legal scrutiny before, has managed to avoid criminal prosecution in a highly-covered New York sexual assault case. The case ultimately led to his resignation from the International Monetary Fund.

Strauss-Kahn’s new fund is awaiting regulatory approval.


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The Wall Street Journal



Activist Investor, Carl Icahn, Modifies eBay Demands

Activist investor, Carl Icahn, has modified his demands in his public battle against the online commerce giant, eBay.

In a letter to investors, Icahn is purposing that eBay spin off 20 percent of its Paypal division in an IPO, or initial public offering. This new proposal is a change from Icahn’s previous one, which demanded that eBay completely separate PayPal from the parent company.

Conducting a 20% IPO of PayPal-and creating two dedicated and highly-focused independent businesses-will provide the best opportunity for these businesses to remain competitive over the long-term,” said Icahn in a letter to investors.

A partial separation of PayPal is not a new idea, and we’re glad to see that Mr. Icahn now seems to agree that a full separation of PayPal is not a good idea,” eBay said in a statement.

In 2002, eBay bought PayPal for $1.5 billion. Currently, Icahn owns 2 percent of eBay shares.


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