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Hedge Fund News: Louis Bacon, Nelson Peltz & Pershing Square

Conservation philanthropist Louis Bacon receives Land Trust Alliance President’s Award (BahamaIslandsInfo)
Declaring that his “bold actions were inspiring others to protect and steward their lands,” the Land Trust Alliance this week presented one of its highest and rarest honours to philanthropic conservationist Louis Bacon. Mr. Bacon was presented with Land Trust Alliance President’s Award for Conservation Leadership September 18 in recognition of what the Alliance called his “lifelong passion for land conservation, his accomplishments with The Moore Charitable Foundation, and his move to permanently protect more than 210,000 acres of his own land.


Short Seller James Chanos Targets China’s Casino Industry (NewsWeek)
Famed investor James Chanos is increasingly training his sceptical eye — and multibillion-dollar war chest — on China’s casino industry. Chanos, a household name on Wall Street who runs Kynikos Associates, a prominent hedge fund in New York, told a conference last April in California that he was increasingly concerned about bribery and corruption in Macau, a Chinese territory that is home to the world’s largest legal gambling and casino business. While he had once wagered that stocks of big American gaming companies with significant operations in the territory would rise, a position known as being “long,” he had recently changed his mind about Macau’s — and China’s — economic and financial prospects.

High Time For A Cannabis Hedge Fund? (Finalternatives)
Launching a hedge fund is always a gamble, but Leslie Bocskor’s decision to launch one focused on the legal cannabis space actually began with a trip to the casino. “I was doing some research on online gaming and what would happen to the casino industry when we saw online really take hold,” Bocskor told FINalternatives’ in a recent phone interview. “And so, of course, if you are looking at the casino industry in any form, where do you go? Las Vegas.” Bocskor, whose background is in corporate finance and investment banking, moved with his wife from New York to Las Vegas while he researched the casino industry; they liked the city and stayed.

Santander ‘follows the money’ with hedge fund strategy switch (eFinancialNews)
The Santander UK Group Pension Scheme has made a $100 million commitment to Dyal Capital Partners, a Neuberger Berman-owned fund founded in 2010, whose strategy is to buy minority stakes in hedge funds. Santander stopped allocating assets to hedge fund managers in early 2013, believing they were too small to make a financial difference to the fund. Antony Barker, head of pensions at Santander, said: “We’ve largely divested the hedge funds we had, but reinvested the capital in the equity of hedge fund managers, one of the first European pension funds to do so I believe. Following the money as it were.”

Alpine hedge-fund founder cracks list of Forbes 400 richest people in U.S. (NorthJersey)
Five of Forbes magazine’s 400 richest people in the United States live in New Jersey, including one from Alpine who made the list for the first time. Larry Robbins, 44, is ranked 374th on the annual Forbes list. The hedge-fund manager is the founder of Glenview Capital Management and is worth $1.71 billion. The wealthiest New Jersey resident is hedge-fund manager David Tepper, 57, of Livingston, who was 45th with a net worth of $10 billion. Tepper runs Appaloosa Management. Donald Newhouse, 84, is the second-richest New Jersey resident on the Forbes list, coming in at 51st with a net worth of $8.7 billion.

Cramer: Hedge funds hurting market (CNBC)

Canadian Pacific Railway expands share buyback plan (Reuters)
Canadian Pacific Railway Limited (USA) (NYSE:CP) is more than doubling the ceiling on its share repurchase program, to about 12.7 million common shares, from 5.3 million. The railway said late on Monday that it has already bought back the maximum number of shares allowed under the current plan, which kicked in on March 17, purchasing about 3 percent of its outstanding common shares. …CP’s shares have soared since now-CEO Hunter Harrison and activist hedge fund Pershing Square Capital Management won a 2012 proxy battle to take control of the company and kicked off a successful campaign to make the railway more efficient.

eBay to spin off online payments giant PayPal as separate company in 2015 after pressure from hedge fund magnate Carl Icahn (DailyMail)
eBay Inc (NASDAQ:EBAY) has announced plans to turn online payments giant PayPaul into a separate company, months after being told to do so by activist investor Carl Icahn. The online marketplace said the spin-off, set for the second half of 2015, was decided because the two giant internet businesses are now ‘less advantageous’ packaged together. eBay has owned PayPal, which is growing rapidly, since 2002 when it bought out what was then a public company. PayPal now accounts for around 40 per cent of eBay’s total revenue.

A fund that’s never lost money in a calendar year – and you can buy at a discount (Telegraph)
Private investors can’t normally put money into hedge funds and many would not want to, given their complexity and high costs. But there may be good reasons to take a different view at the moment. One advantage a hedge fund has over a conventional unit or investment trust is that it can profit even when shares, bonds and other assets are all falling together. This is partly because hedge funds can “short-sell” and party because they can switch nimbly in and out of the more exotic assets such as commodities. The ability to profit when most conventional assets are falling could appeal to those who fear an imminent “correction” in the stock market.

Steve Ballmer’s Zesty New Life: $23.5 Billion And An NBA Team (Forbes)
“I love great views,” Steve Ballmer says with a grin as he takes me on a quick tour of the 40th-floor apartment he just rented in Bellevue, Wash. One set of picture windows faces the downtown Seattle skyline. Another provides a gorgeous view of Mount Rainier to the south. As Ballmer settles into a large tan sofa, I realize one outlook is missing: to the northeast. The apartment’s interior walls prevent us from looking inland toward Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)‘s giant campus, where Ballmer worked for most of his adult life.

Peltz’s BNY Mellon Campaign Underscores Custodians’ Need to Streamline (InstitutionalInvestor)
June 30 saw a $1.05 billion mystery solved: That day Nelson Peltz‘s Trian Partners revealed that it owned 2.5 percent of all outstanding shares in The Bank of New York Mellon Corporation (NYSE:BK). The activist hedge fund firm had disclosed this stake in its April client letter without naming the target. True to form, $8.7 billion, New York-based Trian has yet to announce its plans for change at BNY Mellon, which tops Institutional Investor’s 2014 ranking of the World’s Largest Global Custodians for the sixth consecutive year, with $28.5 trillion in assets under custody and administration…

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