Japan’s Tsuchiya Plans Event-Driven Fund Under New Gov’t.

Jan 11 2010 | 2:49am ET

Two unusual phenomena—a female Japanese hedge fund manager and a new Japanese government—are set to result in a new event-driven hedge fund in the country.

Atsuko Tsuchiya, who ran the since-closed Atom Japan Equity Fund for Sumisho Capital Management until last year, plans to launch the new fund in March with about US$20 million, Bloomberg News reports. The Atom Japan Alpha Fund aims to take advantage of policy changes set to be enacted by the government of new Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, whose election in August ended more than 50 years of almost uninterrupted rule by the country’s conservative Liberal Democratic Party.

Hatoyama has promised to pursue a more environmentally-friendly policy than his predecessors, and has targeted a 25% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions over the next 10 years. But members of his party have also proposed sweeping financial reforms, including a ban on listed subsidies that could affect about 400 listings on Japanese exchanges.

“Ask me if I’m bullish on the Japanese market as a whole, and I’d say ‘not yet,’” Tsuchiya said of the world’s worst-performing developed economy last year. “But for event-driven strategies, the direction of the market doesn’t really matter. The government has become a trigger for corporate events because companies may have to change tack as policy shifts.”

Atom Japan Alpha will invest in between 60 and 80 names, and feature an equity long/short overlay.

The fund will be owned by Gordian Capital Singapore, managed by Tsuchiya’s Atom Capital Management and seeded by Hong Kong-based Penjing Asset Management. The fund will have a capacity of approximately US$500 million.

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