Goldman Vets’ Hedge Fund Falls 1.7%

Jan 12 2012 | 5:13am ET

A hedge fund launched this past summer by a pair of former Goldman Sachs traders couldn’t escape the wave of red ink inundating the industry in the second half of last year.

Benros Capital lost 1.7% since its debut in July with US$300 million from Brummer & Partners. But founders Daniele Benatoff and Ariel Roskis may well count that as a win; the average hedge fund did much worse during the second half.

Benatoff told Financial News that Benros skirted much of the market carnage by managing its exposure during high-volatility periods, and was able to find some attractive opportunities.

“While the volume of deals and events was subdued, there were still a number of idiosyncratic situations such as mergers, acquisitions or restructurings to invest in,” he told FN. And he said he sees more of the same for next year.

“As company boards try to improve their share prices, we are expecting to see opportunities arise in both the traditional merger arbitrage space and in softer type of events such as operational reorganizations and financial restructurings,” he said.

London-based Benros focuses on European event-driven trading. Both of its founders worked at Goldman’s Principal Strategies proprietary trading desk. Benros is just one of a number of high-profile hedge funds launched in the last 14 months by former Goldman Sachs prop. traders, including Eric Mandelblatt’s Soroban Capital Partners and Pierre-Henri Flamand’s Edoma Capital. Azentus Capital, the largest hedge fund launch of 2011, is run by former Goldman prop. trader Morgan Sze, and lost 6.8% last year.


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