These Two Hedge Funders Would Prefer To Manage $800 Million, Not $3.5 Billion

Martin Taylor (41) and Nick Barnes (36)

Photo: Hargreaves Lansdown

Nick Barnes (right) and Martin Taylor used to manage $3.5 billion at Nevsky Capital.Then last year, the pair announced they’d leave Nevsky (which would appoint new managers for their two long-only funds) and open a new fund.

Their portfolios had just had mediocre performance numbers (their global emerging markets fund was 5% off performance at other similar funds in 2009, but the entire fund was up 32%. In 2010 it was up 10%.) and they didn’t want to take full responsibility for them, according to Reuters.

But — they were the “star” portfolio managers brought in by Sir John Beckwith (who does that a lot) to manage the fund, and the fund was expected to see a lot of investor withdrawals.

Sure enough, the amount of money that people want to invest in the pair’s new fund, Nevsky Fund Plc, has already exceeded the peak number they’ll take — $800 million.

Why turn away $70 million in performance fees?

A few hedge fund managers are also scaling back, so their move can in part be explained by 1) being part of a trend┬ábecause of the fact that it’s harder to manage larger amounts of money because you run out of things to invest in and 2) someone told Reuters that the pair will be able to invest in more of what they want now.

From Reuters:

They will be freed from a requirement imposed on its predecessor that at least half the portfolio be invested in emerging markets. The change gives the pair more freedom to walk away from investments when they’re unsure how the holdings will perform.

Their new fund is capped at $800 million.

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