Photo: Courtesy of Bloomberg
Yesterday at 11:46 PM, Lee Ainslie of Maverick Capital got an email with the Subject line, “Yo Lee homey, Sorry to break it to you, but looks to me likely that Maverick will soon be charged with insiderr trading. Just thought I’d let you know…”Sent by John Kinnucan from the expert network Broadband Research, the contents of the email was this link.
The email is below.
What’s in the article that suggests Maverick Capital is next?
From what we gather, there are a few pieces of new information in the article that Kinnucan might think will lead to Maverick’s getting charged with insider trading.
- “In questioning by Rakoff, Shimoon said he had passed tips about a Flextronics supplier, OmniVision Technologies Inc. (OVTI), to a man named “Nick,” who worked for one of Primary Global’s hedge fund clients. Assistant U.S. Attorney Antonia Apps identified that man as Nicholas Caputo of Kingdom Ridge Capital LLC, an asset management firm in White Plains, New York.”
- The complaint that was recently released contains details about Walter Shimoon and the insider tips he gave to 3 hedge fund clients, who are identified as CW-2 (someone who has experience evaluating tech companies and who has pleaded guilty and is cooperating), Hedge Fund Employee-1 (someone who works for a hedge fund with an office in New York City), and Hedge Fund Employee-2 (someone who works for a hedge fund located in New York City).
- “On Nov. 23, 2009, “Shimoon had a 42-minute call with the analyst at Hedge Fund No. 2 during which Shimoon conveyed material nonpublic information” about Apple, according to the complaint.”
- “In a parallel lawsuit, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission alleged Shimoon spoke with people from at least 11 hedge funds over 14 months and leaked stock tips to some of them.”
- “Fleishman is scheduled to be tried next month on two counts of conspiracy.”
Some of the possibilities crossing our mind is that he might think that Maverick got the same tips, or that CW-2, Hedge Fund Employee-1, or Hedge Fund Employee-2 worked for Maverick, or that because Kingdom Ridge was identified, soon Maverick will be.
Or Kinnucan might just be messing with Maverick’s Lee Ainslie. The email blast was copied to tons of reporters and people working in hedge funds. That was likely done to embarrass Ainslie or weird him out.
In any case, it’s almost a certainty that more hedge funds will be charged with insider trading related to the expert networks that supplied information to them. The big question is who’s next. Maverick was already on the suspect list because it got a subpoena last November. UPDATE: Maverick did not get a subpoena, but Charlie Gasparino reported that it had in the fall, so suspicions were piqued. Also, Maverick has had no contact with anyone involved, according to a PR rep for the firm.
Kingdom Ridge is a new possibility, but it’s not shocking because it’s a SAC spin-off, and a bunch of them have been targets.
Here’s the email. And here’s more about the recent news about Kingdom Ridge.