Juggernaut Asia Lives Up To Name, Soars 45%

Dec 23 2011 | 9:58am ET

The second half has been a disappointing one, to say the least, for the average hedge fund. But in 2011, Yashwant Bajaj's Juggernaut Asia Fund has been anything but average since its launch in August.

The fund, which is currently managing about US$5 million, mostly Bajaj's own money, is up 45% this year, Reuters reports. Most of that gain came in October, when the fund soared 32% on bets against troubled cameramaker Olympus Corp.

"In Japan, our short positioning and trading around Olympus was a notable contributor as were our technology long book names," Bajaj wrote in an investor letter. Bajaj told Reuters that two-thirds of Juggernaut's returns this year could be attributed to its event-driven strategy and a quarter from capital market deals. Its long/short strategy has contributed least.

Bajaj, a former Lehman Brothers managing director who, until last year, managed Hachiman Capital Management's Japan hedge fund, said the new fund is based on that strategy.

"I have relaunched the same structure but have broadened it out to be an Asia fund," he told Reuters.

Bajaj will begin fundraising in earnest in the first quarter, focusing on former clients and family offices. He's also spoken with potential seed partners with the hope of raising US$30 million by the fund's first birthday.

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