Besieged By Redemptions, Ridley Park To Close

Nov 29 2012 | 1:32pm ET

Hedge fund Ridley Park Capital has become the latest hedge fund to throw in the towel, blaming poor performance and investor skittishness for the decision.

Founder Julian Barnett, a former top manager at Polar Capital, wrote that "as a result of the performance in 2011 we suffered significant redemptions during the latter part of the year, and despite a period of relative investor calm during 2012, it is clear that too much of the capital within our investor base does not share my philosophy."

That philosophy, making large, long-term bets "has been all but impossible due to the outflows we experienced."

Barnett set up Ridley Park in London in May 2010, launching with US$350 million and ballyhooed as one of the most hotly-anticipated new hedge funds of the year. The excitement didn't last long: Ridley Park lost 27% last year. It is up 6.5% this year.

Despite that, Barnett said he remains confident in his strategy, which he will continue to run with his own money, in "a manner that I feel is best suited to generating outsized returns over the long term." It is unclear how much the firm currently manages.

"There is one thing that is certain over the last 150 years of investment, the best long-term returns are generated by investing capital during a crisis and a cyclical downturn," Barnett wrote. "The length and severity of this current period means the opportunities are likely to have been the best for a generation. None of this is likely to become clear over the next few months or years, but 10 years from now, looking back it will."

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