$15 Billion Asset Manager Takes Cue From Harvard’s Endowment

Aug 27 2008 | 9:11am ET

Gottex Fund Management is taking its cue from super successful endowments like that of Harvard University. 

The asset management firm has just launched a global, multi-asset investment program that will invest in both alternative and traditional investments similar to those in which so-called U.S. “super endowments” invest.

The investment program will allocate an average of 60% or more to alternative assets. It will be actively managed and will pursue both strategic and tactical investment opportunities across all asset classes, including hedge funds, private equity, commodities, long-only equity, fixed income, real estate and other real assets.

The initiative will be managed by William Landes, who recently joined Gottex after being managing director at Putnam Investments.

Over the last 15 years, super endowments have outperformed the markets and most traditional portfolios because of their exposure to alternative assets. Harvard's endowment, which stood at $34 billion as of January, rose by nearly $6 billion in 2007, a nearly 20% increase. At the same time, Yale University’s endowment, which is the second largest in the nation, increased by 25% to reach $22.5 billion.

According to Gottex, the investment community is at the beginning of the convergence of alternative and traditional investment management. The firm says this is being driven by the segregation of beta and alpha performance and the increased requirement for risk adjusted returns, specifically from institutional investors.

The Gottex Group manages funds of hedge funds that are invested in more than 165 hedge fund managers around the world. As of June 30, Gottex had $15.6 billion of in assets under management.


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