Farman Out At Gradient As Firm’s Profit Plummets

Sep 13 2010 | 12:20pm ET

Ivor Farman has left Gradient Capital Partners, as the hedge fund he co-founded continued its downward spiral.

Farman left the London-based firm at the end of last year to pursue personal interests, Gradient said in its accounts filing. Farman and co-founder Scott Pagel made headlines in 2006 and 2007, when they paid themselves £100 million each. But the financial crisis has taken its toll on the firm, which did not impose redemption restrictions and which has seen its profit plummet almost 99%.

Gradient earned just £174,907 in the fiscal year ended July 2009. That’s down from about £13 million in the previous fiscal year and £108 million in fiscal 2007.

The firm did not disclose how much money it’s managing, but it’s clearly managing much less than in its heyday. The firm is believed to have lost 75% of its assets in 2008, and its turnover in the 12 months through last June was just over £1 million, down from £112 million in 2007.

“We have diversified the range of sectors in which we invest and are optimistic that investors are returning to the second to search for alpha,” John Gunn, the firm’s chief operating officer, told Financial News.

The poor corporate performance last year came in spite of a 21% return in 2009. Performance this year is flat, the firm said.

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