Stark Pres., Four Other Partners Quit

Jun 25 2010 | 7:16am ET

Five of Stark Investments’ 15 partners have left the firm this week, including its president and the heads of its European business.

The exits came over the course of two days and after two months of discussions failed, Financial News reports. The departures reportedly stem from disagreements about the future of the Milwaukee, Wisc.-based firm, which has seen its assets under management fall by almost half in the last year-and-a-half.

Colin Lancaster, who served as president and chief operating officer of the firm, is among the partners leaving. He is joined by Marc Wyatt and Anshul Rustagi, co-heads of Stark’s London-based European business, Robert Dishner, co-head of distressed investments, and Ashok Bhatia, co-head of global macro.

“Stark Investments is fortunate to have a deep pool of many talented professionals with long-term demonstrated track records of success,” one of the 10 remaining partners, Mike Roth, said in a statement.

“The departing individuals have made important contributions to the firm in the past and we wish them well.”

The five senior exits follow the spin-off of Stark’s Asia business as Orchard Capital Partners last year and the exit of Matthew Todd, head of sales for Europe, Asia and the Middle East, in March. Despite the raft of departures from its London office, FN reports that Stark remains committed to running its trading and investor relations operations from the British capital.

Stark saw 30% of its assets evaporate last year, despite returning 12%. It has lost another quarter of its assets this year, and now manages $4.4 billion.

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