Tokyo-Based Firm Markets Japan-Focused Funds To U.S., European Investors

Dec 7 2006 | 9:39am ET

Ed Rogers, founder of Rogers Investment Advisors, is currently advising two hedge funds: Wolver Hill Japan Multi-Strategy Fund I and Fund II, for U.S. investors and non-U.S. investors, respectively. The Cayman Islands-domiciled funds, which began trading last month with some $4.5 million in assets, are expected to reach $6 million by the end of this month, according to Rogers.

Rogers, who is based in Japan, is working with New York-based Wolver Hill Asset Management to raise $500 million for the funds.

“We believe we are the only firm that has a Tokyo-headquartered advisor that advises funds open to U.S. and European investors,” Rogers told FINalternatives. “As most don't have the time or resources available to conduct due diligence in Japan, and in Japanese, there is tremendous interest in our Tokyo headquartered fund of funds product.”

He explained that the mandate for the two funds is that they are Japan specific, “so the underlying manager must have 80% or more invested in Japanese underlying instruments.”

The funds of funds, which currently include 13 hedge funds, invest in fundamental equity long/short funds, statistical arbitrage, convertible bond arbitrage, activist funds, event driven vehicles and equity long/short funds with a bent on short-term trading and market neutral strategies.

“What we’re shooting for is to have 15 core managers where we average $30 million per investment to get us up to $450 million, and then we’ll sprinkle the remaining balance in five-to-ten early stage managers,” said Rogers.

The Wolver Hill Japan Multi-Strategy Fund charges a 1.5% management fee and a 10% performance fee. The minimum investment is $1 million for institutional investors and $500,000 for high-net-worth individuals.

Rogers said his firm is also looking to launch a Pan-Asia multi-strategy fund with similar parameters to the Japan Multi-Strategy fund within the next few months.

Rogers, who speaks fluent Japanese, is the former head of prime service sales for Deutsche Bank in Tokyo and a former proprietary derivatives trader for Merrill Lynch in London.

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