Houston Firm Launches Commodity-Only Energy Fund

Nov 17 2006 | 12:28pm ET

Houston-based Trident Asset Management’s new energy fund is aiming to fill the space left by some of the troubled shops, with a fundamental relative-value commodity-only offering, the Trident Asset Master Fund, the firm’s first.

“I would say most energy funds have had a good year,” said CEO Jeff Shankman, the former chief operating officer of global markets at Enron Corp. “There’s a lot of demand for sophisticated risk managers in the energy space,” in spite of the troubles.

Shankman declined to reveal the asset level in the Trident fund, though Bloomberg News reports that he plans to raise up to $250 million over the next six months. The fund launched Wednesday and is run by portfolio manager Andy Weathers, a former energy trader at Houston electricity distributor CenterPoint Energy. Investors include both institutions and high-net worth individuals.

Shankman says the Trident fund will invest across an array of energy commodities, and isn’t concerned about short-term volatility, exemplified by this summer’s brutal natural gas market.

“We’re looking at the long-term, and we don’t expect to be hugely volatile over the long-term,” he said.

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