Alt Investments

Top Goldman Trader Prepping Biggest Hedge Fund Launch Since Crisis Began

Tom Burroughes, Group Editor, London, 16 December 2010

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As new figures showed that the pace of hedge fund launches has risen, Morgan Sze, the global head of Goldman Sachs’ largest proprietary trading desk, has started to raise money for what is expected to be the largest hedge fund launch since the financial crisis began, media reports said.

The new fund is to be called Azentus Capital and will be based in Hong Kong. The Financial Times, quoting unnamed sources, said marketers for the fund expect it to start trading with between $1 billion and $1.5 billion.

Sze has yet to leave his position at Goldman as global head of its GS Principal Strategies trading desk. The Azentus launch has tentatively been slated for the end of the first quarter of 2011.

Reports said that at anything more than $1 billion, Sze’s new fund would easily exceed this year’s largest hedge fund launch – Edoma Capital, also set up by an ex- Goldman Sachs employee, Pierre-Henri Flamand.

Hedge Fund Research, the Chicago-based organisation, said yesterday that strong capital inflows and a return of investor risk tolerance contributed to an increase in new hedge fund launches in the third quarter of 2010. New hedge fund launches increased to 260 in the quarter, up from 201 launches in the prior quarter. For the trailing 12 month period, 945 funds have launched, the highest 12 month total since the period ending on the second quarter of 2008.

Among other details, HFR said that hedge fund liquidations continued to decline, falling to 168 in the quarter, slightly below both the 177 liquidations of the prior quarter.

Equity Hedge and Macro were the strategies producing the most launches, HFR said.

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