Hedge Fund News: Warren Buffett, Kyle Bass & Ray Dalio

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Chance to win Buffett’s billion dollar NCAA bracket challenge just a pipe dream (LancasterOnline)
Warren Buffett didn’t become the second-richest man in the world by taking silly risks. So his billion-dollar NCAA bracket challenge — in which he’s teaming up with Quicken Loans and Yahoo Sports — may be tantalizing for those who participate, but the chances of actually winning are, well, less than infinitesimal. The odds of picking a perfect March Madness bracket and claiming the $1 billion grand prize (a sum, however, that would only make a small dent in Buffett’s estimated $63.4 billion fortune) are about 1 in 9.2 quintillion.

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Activist investors bump into each other in campaigns (GlobalPost)
When Barington Capital Group in October reported a stake of more than 2 percent in Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE:DRI) with a vow to shake up the company, another investment firm was caught off guard. Starboard Value LP, which takes stakes in companies that it perceives to be undervalued with the hopes of making changes, had studied the restaurant chain for six months as a potential target and was waiting for the right moment to pounce.

Hennessee Hedge Fund Index Adds 2.46% In February (Finalternatives)
Hedge funds added 2.46% in February, according to the Hennessee Hedge Fund Index, trailing the 4.31% gain of the S&P 500. The top performing strategies for the month were healthcare and biotech, up 4.14%; distressed, up 3.72%; and international, up 3.29% The bottom three strategies for the month were short biased, down 2.34%; market neutral, down 0.02%; and convertible arbitrage, up 0.19%.

New Whitepaper From Riveles Law Group: Launching a Hedge Fund (HedgeCo)
New York hedge fund attorneys Riveles Law Group has put out a new whitepaper outlining the legal, structural and practical considerations to be evaluated in establishing a hedge fund. The whitepaper covers offshore and domestic funds, hedge fund structure, incubator funds, service providers, regulations, management fees, long with a performance-based allocation. “Launching a hedge fund is a major undertaking that requires a systematic approach and experienced partners in a variety of industries and areas of expertise.”

Fortress-linked Pantera invested $10 mln in Bitstamp (Reuters)
Pantera Capital Management LP, a hedge fund that manages money for Fortress Investment Group LLC (NYSE:FIG) executives, invested about $10 million in Bitstamp Ltd months before it emerged as the world’s dominant dollar-bitcoin exchange, Bloomberg reported, citing three people briefed on the deal. The infusion late last year ranks among the largest single investments in a bitcoin venture and is part of Pantera’s strategy to build a brand in the bitcoin world, Bloomberg said. The market for the digital currency was rocked last month when Mt. Gox, once the world’s largest bitcoin exchange, ceased operations and filed for bankruptcy in Japan and the United States.

Sears Board Approves Land’s End Spin-Off (247WallSt)
It really did not take long for Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ:SHLD) to part with its Land’s End business since first floating the possibility last October. In December, Sears filed documents with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announcing the spin-off. Sears’ board of directors on Friday approved the spin-off. On April 4, Sears shareholders of record as of March 24 will receive a distribution of 0.300795 shares of Land’s End common stock for each share of Sears stock they hold. The new stock will start trading on April 7 on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol ‘LE’. Until the spin-off is complete Sears common stock will trade either in a “regular way” market or a “ex-distribution” market. Regular way stock will trade with an entitlement to shares of Land’s End common stock on the distribution date while ex-distribution shares will carry no such entitlement.

Hedge Fund Directors Are Useless, Most Investors Say (ThinkAdvisor)
Hedge fund directors don’t get much respect these days. Corgentum Consulting, a provider of hedge fund operational due diligence reviews and background investigations, reported last week that 73% of investors and operational due diligence analysts surveyed felt directors did not serve a useful function. Worse, 76% said directors did not provide true independent oversight of funds. “Offshore jurisdictions and fund directors have an ongoing public relations problem when it comes to investors,” Corgentum managing partner Jason Scharfman said in a statement.

Hayman’s Bass on General Motors probe (CNBC)

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