Pair Of Purchases Renew Hedge Fund Shopping Spree

Mar 14 2007 | 11:18am ET

After a February lull, Wall Street is back in the market for alternative investment managers with a pair of transactions this week.

Yesterday, Lehman Brothers bought a slice of its fifth hedge fund firm, agreeing to pay an undisclosed amount for a 20% stake in New York-based D.E. Shaw & Co., the fourth-largest hedge fund manager in the U.S. with some $29 billion in assets under management.

The deal is Lehman’s second this year for a hedge fund manager: In January, it took a 20% stake in London-based Spinnaker Capital Group.

Earlier this week, Morgan Stanley, which went on a hedge-fund shopping spree last year, buying all or part of five hedge fund managers, added to its stable, taking a minority stake in startup Asian special situations shop Abax Global Capital. The Hong Kong-based fund, which is expected to be the largest-ever independent Asian hedge fund launch with over $1 billion, was founded by Citadel Investment Group veterans Chris Hsu and Frank Qian, along with Donald Yang, the former head of Hong Kong and Greater China debt capital markets at Merill Lynch.

Morgan Stanley did not disclose either the size of its stake or how much it was paying for it. The new hedge fund will focus on private- and public-sector issuers in mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

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