Monday, January 01, 2001

Mutual Fund Guru Eyes Europe, Institutional Market for Hedge Fund

Mutual Fund Guru Eyes Europe, Institutional Market for Hedge Fund
Alternative Investment News
January 2001
By Pamela Appea

Mutual fund pioneer Michael Lipper is looking to possibly expand L & S Partners I, LLC, the hedge fund he co-founded a year-and-a-half ago, to the European market in about a year’s time.

With a current focus on high-net-worth individuals in the domestic sector, the fund is also looking to increase the number of endowments, foundations and other institutional clients looking to invest in alternatives, Lipper said.

“We’re going to have to wait before we do an institutional push,” Lipper said. “Part of that will depend on how the gods of performance treat us,” he joked.

The Milwaukee-based fund, which opened its doors in June 1999, invests in financial service groups, and had a 36% performance rate in 2000. Along with Lipper, managing member Zuheir Sofia, former ceo and president of the Columbus, Ohio-based Huntington Bank, are working with the firms’ two other principal members to develop their $17 million dollar long/short hedge fund.

The fund’s minimum for investment is $500,000, although the minimum amount is not cast in stone, Lipper added. L & S Partners I will employ the standard fee, with a 1% management fee and a 20% performance fee over a 6% hurdle.

Lipper, who is based in Summit, New Jersey, recently left his position as non-executive chairman for Lipper Inc., a mutual funds data and research group.

Now he plans on spending more time on L & S Partners I, which is a stand-alone hedge fund. Lipper who is the president of Lipper Advisory Services, a group that manages or advises about $750 million in investments for institutional clients and wealthy families.