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Hedge Fund News: Crispin Odey, John Paulson & Paul Singer

Crispin Odey’s £150,000 palatial chicken coop dubbed ‘Cluckingham Palace’ is complete – but with hedge issues (WesternDailyPress)
A mega-rich banker has finished building a £150,000 palatial chicken coop dubbed ‘Cluckingham Palace’, it has been reported. Hedge-fund manager Crispin Odey has completed the giant chicken house built in the grounds of Grade II-listed home at English Bicknor in the Forest of Dean, the Daily Telegraph reported. Top London architects Christopher Smallwood were hired to design the posh poultry pad – is built from the finest Forest of Dean sandstone, which costs £130,000 alone.

Crispin Odey

Wolf Hedge Unveils Macro Fund (Fnalternatives)
Wolf Hedge has doubled its hedge-fund offerings. The firm recently launched its second hedge fund, Wolf Hedge Global. The macro vehicle will invest in a wide area of asset classes, including stocks, exchange-traded funds, currencies, bonds and insurance products. “Our focus will still be in long/short but in a bigger and broader universe,” CEO Mark Malik said. “We will invest internationally.” “We have a robust-tested long/short strategy, and it is now time to utilize that in international markets.”

‘Bad boy’ of hedge fund world takes 11% stake in WH Ireland (CityWire)
Hedge fund manager Reade Griffith – described by Forbes as the ‘bad boy’ of the industry due to his sometimes controversial approach – has taken a chunky stake in turnaround story WH Ireland. Griffith took an 11% exposure to WH Ireland via derivatives, equivalent to 2.67 million shares worth £2.39 million at a share price of 90p. While that is down sharply from a March high of 140p it remains 51% up over the last three years. The manager has drawn flack by funding the expansion of his business with fees gathered on a fund which had gated investor cash, and has tangled with the boards of several high-profile investments.

Hedge fund reinsurer Till Capital agrees purchase of Omega Insurance (Artemis)
Bermuda domiciled hedge fund style reinsurance and hybrid investment platform Till Capital Ltd., has now signed a definitive agreement to acquire Toronto-based insurance provider Omega Insurance Holdings, Inc. It’s the latest step in the growth and diversification of the Till Capital platform, which has been set up and structured using a Bermuda Class 3A reinsurer, named Resource Re, in order to produce underwriting profits and to outperform on the asset management side of the business as well.

John Paulson’s Advantage: Alibaba Investments (InstitutionalInvestorsAlpha)
At least one hedge fund manager appears to have made big money from the initial public offering of Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA). John Paulson‘s New York-based hedge fund firm, Paulson & Co., invested in the company’s IPO, which played an outsize role in Paulson’s performance in September and the year to date, according to its third-quarter letter to investors obtained by Alpha. In September the nonrestricted shares of the firm’s Paulson Advantage funds gained about 8.5 percent, while the nonrestricted shares of Advantage Plus funds – which have 1.5 times the exposure of the Advantage funds – did even better.

Hedge funds in liquidation mode (CNBC)

Hedge funds should return 10%+ to remain attractive to investors (Opalesque)
Hedge funds should return at least 10%+ annually because earning less would make it hard to sell to new investors, said Iwan Vink, founder and managing director of WinCap Investment Management. Vink told participants of the latest Opalesque 2014 Netherlands Roundtable, “As long as (a) fund is returning less than 10%, it’s a bit of a hard sell to new investors… A lot of potential investors have many asset classes they are very happy with, especially after the five years of bull run in the stock market. Some of those investors don’t even care if they are going to lose 10% or 15% on those assets.”

Hall Commodities Hedge Fund Shutting After Poor Performance (Bloomberg)
Hall Commodities LLP, a London-based $100 million hedge-fund firm run by Tony Hall and Arno Pilz, told clients it’s shutting at the end of the month citing poor performance. Its main fund lost 1.6 percent last month and 11 percent this year, Hall said in an Oct. 9 letter. The firm, which was incorporated in December 2012, lost 10.1 percent since inception. “After a good start to the strategy, recent months of trading have proven very difficult with performance suffering,” Hall said in the letter, a copy of which was obtained by Bloomberg News. He declined to comment on the closure.

Biggest German Public Pension Likes Buyout, Hedge Funds (BusinessWeek)
Germany’s biggest public pension fund plans to invest more in private equity and hedge funds and reduce its bond holdings as low interest rates curb returns. “We started committing the first funds to private equity in 2007 and we are now beginning to reap the first rewards,” said Andre Heimrich, chief investment officer of Bayerische Versorgungskammer, in an interview in Munich. “There is still room for expansion and we could imagine doubling our share of private-equity investments.” BVK currently has about 4 percent of its assets committed to buyout funds.

Paul Singer drops Madeleine Albright’s firm amid Argentina conflict (NYPost)
Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and hedge fund billionaire Paul Singer have parted ways. Albright, who has parlayed her extensive diplomatic ties into both a consulting firm and a hedge fund that invests in emerging markets, was hired by Singer to help in his rancorous debt dispute with Argentina, as reported exclusively by The Post. Albright, it was hoped, would be able to bring Argentina officials to the bargaining table. The assignment backfired when Argentina President Cristina Kirchner publicly attacked Albright’s firm for meddling in the country’s affairs.

Georgia Salpa to get hitched next May – just before model turns 30 (IrishMirror)
Sorry boys! Gorgeous Georgia Salpa is set to tie the knot next May before her 30th birthday. The 29-year-old glamour model will take the plunge in Ireland next spring to long-term partner Joe Penna. A source said: “She’s really excited about it – she has no doubt that Joe’s the guy for her.” Joe, a hedge fund manager from London, proposed to Georgia with a huge sparkler last December after three years of dating.

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