Peloton Co-Founder Launches New Hedge Fund

Sep 20 2010 | 1:34am ET

A co-founder of collapsed hedge fund Peloton Partners has resurfaced on the other side of the world.

Ron Beller has set up Branch Hill Capital in San Francisco, Financial News reports. The new firm is currently managing $40 million contributed by Beller and co-founder Manal Mehta, who also worked at Peloton, and the duo have returned 15% in their first three months.

The new fund is a deep-value special-situations vehicle. It is a concentrated portfolio, investing in equities and credit default swaps, and does not use leverage. For now, Beller and Mehta are focusing on financials, including insurers, and are shorting mortgage originators, with a U.S. bias. But Branch Hill plans to expand its ambit globally in time.

Beller and Mehta plan to open Branch Hill to outside investors by the end of this year and hope to raise $250 million in a year.

Beller has been on the sidelines since he and Peloton co-founder Geoff Grant were forced to close the London-based firm after its $2 billion asset-backed securities hedge fund was wiped out in February 2008. Grant that year founded a new hedge fund, Grant Capital Partners, which now manages more than $200 million.

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